5 Ways to Overcome Creative Blocks
by Samantha Davis
If you’re a writer, artist, or any form of content creator, chances are you’ve experienced a creativity block at some point or another. As defined by Goodtherapy.org, a creative block is “the inability to access one’s internal creativity”.
These blocks are experienced by many throughout the globe and can last days, weeks, months, or even years. I’ve experienced writer’s block several times. Sometimes it stems from a bout of depression, other times it just seems like I can’t think of anything—or, what I do come up with doesn’t seem good enough.
A block can come about because we are overthinking, over critical, or over analyzing our content. As creators, our work is like our baby and so we hold it near and dear. We want it to be the absolute best and truly are our own worst critics.
Being over analytical may seem like a good thing at first but it can limit your ability to be creative as well as meet deadlines due to the overwhelming desire of making sure it’s ‘perfect’. I’ve deleted entire blogs and videos or simply didn’t upload them over minute details that were insignificant.
One of the main things I’ve learned to surpass a creative block is to identify the underlying feeling or issue and tackle that head on. I have found that after identifying the initial cause or trigger, calming the mind aids in the restoration of creativity.
There are a lot of tips on how to overcome creativity blocks. For example, pushing through and forcing it is one way I’ve come across. However, I found this to be ineffective (personally).
I find that I am my most creative when I feel inspired, uplifted, and motivated but more importantly, when I feel at peace. So, that is the state of mind I strive for when combating the block.
5 Ways to Overcome Creative Blocks
1. Change your scenery. Go outside and get some fresh air or head to a coffee shop. Changing your environment is a great way to get inspired. If you can’t change your environment while working, get a change beforehand. This can be taking a walk in the park or going to a place that gets your creative juices flowing such as an art show.
2. Breathe. Deep breathing has been proven to have many benefits to the human body and soul. Slow, deep breathing can calm the mind, improve circulation, increase energy levels, and detoxify the body, as well as many more benefits. I was taught deep breathing exercises as a part of my coping strategies for anxiety—which can be a factor in creative blockages.
3. Write about how you feel. Writing can be very therapeutic. It is a great way to get thoughts and emotions out and make sense of them. When you’re experiencing a block write about what you’re feeling. Take time to describe your current state: physical and emotional. Be open and transparent with your writing as this will help you to release those thoughts and feelings.
4. Prayer. Prayer is powerful. It can resolve any issue. When I experience a block, I will express my feelings and frustrations through prayer. I also make sure to ask for clarity and peace of mind, and I always feel better afterwards. The prayer doesn’t have to be extravagant, just be open, raw, and intimate with God.
5. Meditation. Meditation is great for clearing the mind, restoring peace, and easing anxiety. It is also a great way to become more grounded and present in the now. Meditation can be done with or without music, guided or in silence. A lot of people are intimidated by meditation for many reasons. However, it can be just as simple as laying down for 5 or so minutes, focusing on your breathing as you envision how you want to feel or the project you want to create. When it comes to meditation, I recommend you do what feels best for you, there are a ton of different methods out there.
These are just a few of the many ways to combat creative blockages. Other ways to clear a block include visualization, exercise, consuming motivational content, reading scripture, and yoga.
My advice to anyone looking to clear the dreaded creativity block: do what you feel is best for you. What works for some might not be effective for you and that’s okay.
If you aren’t into yoga, don’t force yourself to sit through an entire class or session because you’ve seen it work for others. This will only add to your frustration which can increase the block.
About the Author
My name is Samantha. I live in North West, Ohio with my son. I am an Autism mom, blogger, writer, and entrepreneur. Hobbies of mine include cooking, listening to music, walking outdoors, and working out.
My blog/ business, Soulful Success, was created to inspire others to achieve their best versions of themselves. I believe that everyone has what it takes to become successful, no matter what that definition may be for them. Furthermore, I want to inform and aid others in understanding self-wellness, and its importance when discussing success.
You can read Samantha’s “The Soul Spot” column on 3rd Thursday each month here at Mustard Seed Sentinel.