Beat the Block: 3 Ways To Unstick Your Creativity

I work in the creative industry. Every days there’s a new client, a new project to work on. Creativity is what we sell. We’re not allowed to run out of ideas.

That doesn’t mean we don’t get creative blocks from time to time. But when you have a client paying $100-plus an hour, there’s no explaining that you couldn’t think of anything for him.

Instead, we power through. The more you exercise your creativity, the more you learn how to keep it flowing and how to handle it when it gets difficult.

So here’s five great ways to help you beat the block:

1. Do some research. It may be you simply don’t know enough about your topic to be properly inspired. Grab your keyboard and delve into your topic from every angle. Write down things you find particularly interesting.

2. Take a break. Go for a walk or stare at the window. Even when you’re not consciously focusing on a problem, the brain is still moving and connecting and solving.

3. Draw a word map. Do some word associations to free your mind from the rut it’s in. The visual aspect of this, drawing out the map, will stimulate different parts of your brain, too. Set a timer for a few minutes and don’t stop until time’s up. Then look back, choose your favorites and use that as a starting point.

4. Try on a different perspective. Pick out a list of people who you think would do a good job with this project, or who you like, or who you think is creative. How would your sister approach this project? Your boss? A creative friend? Lady Gaga? You’ll be surprised what you think up.

5. Let yourself be not perfect. Pick up that pen and write down an awful idea. You can do it. Really, it’s okay. Sometimes we get caught up in the pressure to make every idea being a mindblowing ball of awesome. Stop putting so much pressure on yourself. Let the bad ideas out and you’ll find you’ve got more room in that brain of yours for the good ones.

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