If you ever wonder how to get your creative juices flowing again, you aren’t alone. I love that my job is that it requires me to be creative. One of my least favorite things about my job? You guessed it…it requires me to be creative. There’s rarely a dull moment, but it’s hard to phone it in. I’ve had so many times in the last three years that I’ve struggled to stay on top of my work, especially after pregnancy loss, while pregnant, and coming back from maternity leave.
How To Get Your Creative Juices Flowing Again
I had some rough bouts with depression in the first year after giving birth which sometimes made it difficult to get out of bed, let alone excel at work. I have to be brainstorming and constantly innovating to be good at my job. That’s difficult when I’m feeling burnt out. I’m definitely no expert, but I have learned some things that have helped keep me on track.
1. Work When You Feel Up To It
When I do feel creative, I do as much conceptualizing as possible — coming up with blog post ideas, thinking about Instagram and email newsletter possibilities, filming Reels, etc. I tend to work best in bursts, so setting an hourlong timer and letting the creative juices flow works really well for me.
2. Keep Normal Hours
When I’m feeling blah about my work, the day tends to drag on with me not getting much done. Previously, I’d punish myself for this by working into the night. Now, I force myself to log off by 4 or 5 p.m. as long as I’ve met all time-sensitive deadlines. Sitting in front of the computer for hours when I’m feeling uninspired isn’t great, and work/life balance is still important.
3. Do Tedious (But Fulfilling!) Work
Blogging isn’t my full-time job by choice. I take on freelance copywriting projects that are often unexciting compared to influencing. Still, it gives me a way to provide for myself without feeling pressure to develop revolutionary ideas. In some ways, doing outside work gives me a deeper appreciation for the fun stuff.
4. Change Up Your Scenery
Whether you work from home or at an office, your surroundings can get stale. I like working in coffee shops and co-working spaces, but if I’m not in the mood to spend money, I’ll walk and brainstorm ideas or sit on my porch with my laptop. Even a subtle change is enough to make a difference and trick my brain into feeling less listless.
5. Give It Time
If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that creative blocks are rarely permanent. It’s so hard to remember when it’s actually happening, but our brains sometimes need a break. For the last two months of 2020, I had zero motivation or drive and had to balance that with the fact that I needed to bring in money. I look back at that time and remember how hopeless I felt about my career, but the fog eventually lifted.
Have you dealt with creative blocks? If so, what’s helped you?