Ahh, the brain. It’s a beautiful organ isn’t it? Some days the ideas are flowing effortlessly from your mind translating so smoothly onto your notebook paper or computer screen, and other days you can’t seem to drum up a thing to say or write about. This is also commonly referred to as a creative rut, road block, brain fart, etc. We’ve all been there.
There are a few specific things I like to do when I fall into a creative rut. Some are tools used to escape and reset and others are used to encourage and rebuild. Keep reading for my best tips!
Check Out & Logg Off
This seems obvious right? You’ve heard it before a million times? I know, probably so. But do you listen? When is the last time you really logged off and checked out of your social media accounts?
We are all guilty of low key being addicted to staying plugged in and in-the-know of what’s going on in our own worlds and what our peers are up to. If we aren’t careful, our favorite apps like Instagram can lead us down a path of constant comparison … and not the good kind either (I have talked about the good kind of comparison here). Social media also influences us daily with visuals and text, so it’s vital to create some distance to allow your mind to be free from others unsolicited influence that may be negatively impacting your work.
So next time your social starts to make you feel icky inside, logg off for the day, the week, or the month and re-channel your energy towards what DOES make you feel good.
Revisit Your Own Bomb Work
When I’m feeling down on my work and uninspired, I like to go back to my work and posts that performed well. I re-read the post, the comments, the shares and I remind myself that I got this and that more dope work is on the way!
It’s helpful to see what kind of content was successful for you in the past, and revisit those type of ideas to continue better serving your audience and readers. If you need a boost of self confidence, head to your comments section and be reminded of why people eff with you.
Ask For Feedback
When it’s time to level up, start asking for feedback. Start with your closest friends, family members or support group and get some inside intel as to what they think you could improve on. Ask for feedback regarding your content, is there a topic that may be missing that others are seeking answers to? What do they think you are particularly awesome at that you should be doing more of?
Don’t forget about your audience too. Instagram has a cool “Poll” feature giving you access to gather feedback from your readers by asking them directly, “what do you want to see more of?” Pay attention to what your audience is telling you.
Make Yourself A Priority
I love and cherish alone time. Sure, I’ve had people in the past try to make me feel bad for being a homebody, but I truly enjoy spending time with me. Honestly, it’s a necessity. When I’m alone, I allow room to refocus and regroup. Go to the spa, get a mani/pedi, swing by your favorite museum, see a matinee movie, finish that book you started, buy a new outfit, paint, deep condition your hair while laying by the pool, do absolutely nothing all day. You get me, just do something for you, by yourself.
If interaction is more your speed, get out…in real life… with your real friends and enjoy yourself! Laugh, dance, shop, girlfriends are everything! Friends always give you boots of happiness and feel good feelings to carry with you through the week.
Step Into Another Lane
When I start to feel overwhelmed with all things beauty, I start to turn my attention elsewhere. Meaning, I’ll listen to different podcasts about finance, or business, or a good jail crime series (Any other crime/thriller fans out there? lol). I’ll even read a book about something completely unrelated from what I talk about daily (right now I’m half way through Shoe Dog by Phil Knight…the Nike story).
Tap into another world, even if just for fun! The whole idea is to train your brain to rewire and get off track into a new lane and way of thinking from a different perspective.
Embrace The Transition
Sometimes that creative rut is something else speaking to you. Sometimes, it means you’ve outgrown what you’ve been building and it’s time to move on (I wrote a post on that a while back here). You have to learn how to tap into your intuition and trust your gut. If something doesn’t feel right to you anymore, it probably isn’t. Don’t ignore those signs. For me, I know that feeling and voice is God speaking to me. Be open to the signs and give yourself a hard evaluation of what’s working and what is no longer serving you. After that, be ready to adjust or change course and do it boldly! Don’t feel like you owe anyone an explanation for it. It’s OK to start anew again.
So next time you hit a rut, remember these tips and don’t be too hard on yourself. Life is about mountains and valleys right? Handle it with grace, you got this.
(all images are from Pinterest)