Creative Block

Oh yes, many times I get stuck. Is not nice, it is not easy to overcome sometimes, but then, on others, it is extremely easy if we just follow a few steps…

I found some good material online and I’m referencing it here. Please visit the original article, highlighted as [source], to read more. Words below are a mix of the topics on the articles and my own experience (in italics).

How to Overcome Your Creative Block [source]

Are you going through a creative dry spell? Here are five creativity busters and some practical tips for overcoming them:

Fear is a common problem apparently. Fear of rejection, fear of success, fear of failure, and many types of fear. The one that gets me sometimes is the fear of trying something new. Depending on the day a new task can be exciting and motivative enough, but sometimes the ‘blank canvas’ can be terrifying!!! And yes, it causes creative paralysis. One of the best ways to overcome it is to give yourself permission to face the fear head on. Once you identify the fear that’s paralyzing you, tell yourself it’s okay if the fear comes to pass. Write this permission down if you have to and refer to it often. Then, proceed to act in the face of your fear.

“Are your creations never quite good enough? Do you have trouble feeling that a project is really complete? Are clients happy with your work even though it never seems quite good enough to you? If this is you, you may be suffering from perfectionist tendencies. If so, you’re not alone. Many creative people are perfectionists. One trick for combating perfectionism is to ask yourself if you would be this hard on someone else. Often, the answer is “no.” You should be at least as reasonable with yourself as you would be with another person.”

Overscheduling your time with too many projects might seem like a good moneymaking strategy but in the end it can leave you feeling burnt out. This is because most creative people need time to process their ideas and they also need exposure to the outside world for inspiration. When you over schedule yourself you eliminate both processing time and inspiration. To overcome this problem, incorporate a regular block of time that isn’t assigned to a project in your weekly schedule. Use this time to process ideas, find inspiration, or just rest.

In many ways, this is the opposite of busy-ness. If you have a problem with putting projects off you may find that the quality of your creative work suffers. I’ve done it, you probably have done it… we do tend to push things to the limit and last minute sometimes… if you leave procrastination creeping in it could be a routine later on and your projects and deadlines can become a big mess. Tackle your procrastination by creating a workable schedule with plenty of breaks. Also, examine your attitudes closely to make sure that the root cause of your procrastination is not really the problem of fear or perfectionism.

Not taking care of your health is a bad idea in many ways. Let’s face it. No one performs well on a diet of junk food or after only a few hours of sleep. If you get sick, your creativity will take an even bigger hit. To solve this creativity buster, identify your unhealthy habits today. Make healthier living (exercising, eating right, getting enough sleep, and regular checkups) a part of your routine. It’s best to avoid as many health problems as you can.

It is easy said than done, but for me it worked slowly changing bad habits… or adding a few good ones. My sacred good is to have at least one full bottle of water a day (not counting tea or coffee or juices). I bought a KOR water vessel to motivate me – a great piece of design – and it is also a reminder of my commitment to myself. Other good habits: not have lunch at my desk, it helps me to unwind and rest my eyes from computer even if it is for a few minutes. Try to walk after lunch, as a break from work, the desk and get some fresh air (also, even if it is 10 minutes it makes wonders).

In another article:

10 Tips to Avoid a Creative Block [source Inspired Mag]

1. Doodle in Your Sketchbook

Graphic Designers always sketch up some ideas or concepts when starting on new projects. I know I do and I have been sketching and drawing since I was little and you might have too. Drawing takes your mind off things and gets your creative juices flowing, you will be surprised how quickly ideas come back to you just from doodling in a little book.

2. Visit Inspirational Galleries on the Web

Looking through designs that were created by other people is usually a great inspiration too. People around the world has gone about setting up Inspirational Galleries for us to visit and view masses of art on the same website, saving us time and effort. I recommend visiting Inspirational Design Galleries as a hobby day to day too, keeping you up to date with the design trends. Read more on 10 Niche Social Networks to Get Your Design Creativity On

3. Take a Walk

Get out of your office, sitting all day is just going to make you look at the same things over and over again which definitely isn’t going to benefit you. Go outside and take the dog for a walk or just go for a walk by yourself. The fresh air and seamless nature around you might drive some new inspiration into you.

4. Search for New Fonts

You will be surprised by how much inspiration you can draw from a few simple curves. It freshens up your thinking patterns and gets your mind fixed on the things that you have to do. Fonts aren’t only used for saying something, they are also used to create something. Read more on 20 Websites for Font, Letter and Symbol enthusiasts

5. Stop Doubting Yourself

Self doubt is a huge thing to overcome a a person, every person faces it sometime or another.When the time comes and you break free from the emotional stumble block a whole new world opens up. Like I said earlier don’t compare yourself to other people, take a stand and believe in yourself, you will accomplish a lot.

6. Get Away For a Day or Two

Sitting in front of the computer days at a time isn’t good at all. My advice is to go away with friends or family for a day or two, the change of scenery will change your thinking patterns and a few ideas might spring up in the process. Keeping a balanced lifestyle is very important in the work that we do, working out is essential.

7. Take your work to the nearest Coffee Shop

Working amongst a busy environment can be very beneficial, especially if you have to come up with new concepts and ideas. The reason is that nothing stays the same, it keeps constantly changing and therefore your thinking changes. You won’t understand the difference until you have experienced it yourself. Try it.

8. Go out with some friends

A night on the town with some friends can bring across some inspiration as well. Having fun and taking your mind off work lets you relax and have fun and not think about your clients.

9. Listen to some Music

Try changing your usual music taste to something different that you don’t always listen to. It broadens your spectrum of thinking and moving by inputting some new sounds and words. A lot of inspiration can be drawn from a simple song. Read more on 20 Fantastic Ways to Find New Music that You Like

10. Follow Some Tutorials

You might think that you don’t want to follow tutorials because you want to come up with your own work, but learning new techniques is the only way to improve your skills and creativity. Following tutorials is a very good base to start off with, because you can add your personal touch to the image you are working on.

A couple more articles: