Overcoming Your Creative Block 101

May 10, 2016

So the dreadful moment has arrived. Your Creativity has suddenly deserted you and didn’t leave a word behind. You sink in a deep despair full of worry, hoping for its quick return. You even begin to doubt your capability and think was I ever creative in the first place?

Hold on.

Fortunately or unfortunately, that is just your mind down-playing you. It is common and okay to lose perspective especially when you get yourself a new project. Staring into the endless white space on your screen can be debilitating when you know the clock is ticking faster than usual towards the deadline. But hold on; there are ways to beat your creative block and get back in the game.

Identifying the Triggers

It is a good idea to understand the causes of your creative block. For some it can be something as simple as accepting a project outside their comfort zone. Maybe the project is too big and the expectations are too high and you can’t mess it up. The unwelcomed fear triggers your creative block. Fear is the most common affliction experienced by creative people. Fear of not being up to the mark or losing control or being judged. Another trigger could be working on something new of which you have no experience. In this case, the lack of knowledge can trigger your creative block.

The key is to understand the triggers and then come up with a framework to manage them.

Creating an Action-Oriented Framework

Once you have identified your trigger, you can work towards solving the problem. If you are intimidated by a project or are trying out something new, here is a sensible action-oriented framework that you could follow to overcome your creative block.

Break Your Project

As pointed out earlier, we get creative block mostly because the project seems too big and it’s intimidating. If you break the project up into smaller tasks, you won’t feel intimidated because the project will seem more manageable and less burdensome. It will become more exciting.

Make a To Do List

It is essential to develop a list of goals and objectives that need to be achieved. Doing so will free your mind from worrying about keeping tracks of all the parts. As a result, you will be able to devote your brain power in working on creative concepts.

Doodle, Sketch, Doodle

It is not easy to break through your creative block sometimes. However, your mind will grasp ideas quicker if you can get into the habit of sketching or doodling. Doodle or sketch whatever concepts or designs come into your mind. This will ultimately prove fruitful because you will be less distracted, more focused and hence the ideas will begin to flow.

Talk to Friends and Fellow Geniuses

You never know how a chat with a colleague, friend or even your spouse can bring you new ideas and help you overcome your creative block. If you got a second opinion about your project, you might get a new perspective. Getting insights from different minds and eyes can help you branch out your current ideas and take your project from bring great to greater.

All Hail Google

Every project starts with research. If you are stuck in a project or know very little about it, it is essential to dig deeper and research. Get to know your clients, their mindset, their industry and what they look for. You can also look at what competitors are doing. Try and find your inspiration. Doing all this can lead to an award-winning design solution.

Doing the Word Tree Exercise

Take your project and write down every element/word related to your topic. Draw branches and write every concept that comes to your mind above and beyond those words. Don’t worry whether they are related or not. You will be very surprised at how you could make connections between the concepts and come up with something unique and clever.

Shut Down and Return Later

Sometimes it is best to stop yourself from working too hard. Take a break and indulge yourself in some of your favorite activities. These could be anything – from long walks, jogs to eating spicy food and revisiting that classic movie collection on your shelf. When you take a break and come back, you might end up seeing your project from a different angle that will spark an idea.

Make a Permanent Room for Positivity

It is essential to retain positivity even if you are having a hard time breaking your creative block, whatever you do, do not fall victim to self-criticism. Think constructive thoughts and ask yourself questions that lead to a new perspective. Such as:

-if I was an expert what would I do? This will push to the next step,

-if I could not go wrong, what would I dare to do? This will allow you to take more risks in your work and bring out your creative side.

Our Conclusion & Your Beginning

In a creative career, it is essential to dance beyond the perceived limits of your ability. This means working hard outside your comfort zone. And yes that is often the cause of our creative block. But freeing your mind is crucial. Getting away from what is holding you back subconsciously is the key in letting you move forward with your work. Which is why an action-oriented framework customized to your context will work as your guideline.

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