5 ways to get out of a creative block

03.07.2016

I’ve been in a bit of a creative impasse these past few weeks. It can happen to anyone, I know, but it’s always scary. “What if my creative juice never comes back?”“I need to tackle this project, but I’m empty… zero inspiration, nada…” “What am I going to blog about this week, I have nothing to say…”

Does this happen to you as well? How do you handle it? How do you get your creative mojo back?

I’ve decided to write down ideas to share with those of you who may face a similar situation, and also to go back to whenever this happens to me [again], because I’ve noticed a pattern – totally unconscious though – in the way I handle these phases of creative drought.

  • Get up earlier. “Le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt” or “the world belongs to the early risers” fits the bill for me. I get so much creative juice in the first 2 hours of the morning. I’m up by 5 AM and get one and a half hour of work done before my family is up. This, for me, is the most productive and creative time.
  • Write down any idea [good and bad] down.  Whether on my iPhone notes or my little notebook that I carry everywhere with me, I always write down any idea that pops up. Sometimes, on good days, I can get as many as 5 post purchase clomid ideas in a day – some of which will never see the light. That helps for the dry creative days. Even better, writing draft posts in advance can save you when you find yourself in a creative block zone.
  • Get out and exercise. Whether running, walking, a pilates or yoga session, keeping your body in shape helps your mind get out of a creative fog. Don’t ask me why, but when I’m in a regular running routine or take miss Daisy for long walks, I’m super creative.

walking daisy

  • Clean your desk. This may sound silly, but when I’m in a creative impasse, I declutter my desk and it helps a lot.
  • Challenge yourself and embark on a creative project that has nothing to do with work. Painting a wall, trying a new challenging cooking recipe, starting a sewing project, anything really that keeps your mind away from work but uses your creativity. Last week, I made this DIY bed mattress, and I was pretty happy with the result. Using a creative outlet that has nothing to do with your creative ‘job’ sometimes helps unleash the beast.

French By Design

Above all, don’t panic. Step back, open your mind to other things; if you can take a few days off work, do it! You’ll get back with a fresh creative brain and rock your world again. Xo, Si-

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10 comments

  • Chiara

    Oh, how I can relate to all of these points! Yoga and long walks really help me as well. The scariest is when the creative block lasts longer than the previous one. Then you wonder if your ‘creative mojo’ like you call it will ever come back, but you’re right, it feels good to know that everyone goes at some point through it. Great post, thank you Si!

    • French By Design

      Yep, @Chiara, we all go through it! Thank you for your kind words.

  • BODIE and FOU

    Ah…I go through this on a weekly basis at the moment!
    Mondays seem to be the worse day for me, I don’t know if it’s because I switch off during the weekend or because I’m embarking on a new freelance path and I have to push myself but I seem to be harder on myself than when I was running the shop.
    Did you feel that way when you made the switch a few years ago?

    bises

    • French By Design

      Oh no, @Karine, sorry to hear. No, I do not recall going through such a phase when I went full time blogging [as opposed to shop and blog]. I think in your case, it’s a matter of switching from a blog that relayed mainly to a B&F shop content [which my blog never really was even when I had my small vintage shop] to more of a personal blog. But, I’d tackle it the same way : find your unique voice and blog style – what makes you who you are, what you go through, what inspires you, etc… and everything will come naturally into place. Good luck Karine!

  • Tiffany

    Oh yes, so familiar-I had an awful time of it last summer, weeks of nothing, same at the beginning of this year too. I think it’s important to take time away from it from time to time to stop putting pressure on yourself to come up with the goods. I try to stop looking at what other people are doing too-because that’ll stop any great idea I have coming into fruition half the time if I see it done by someone else! x

    • French By Design

      Oh, @Tiffany, I completely agree with you. Putting pressure on yourself only makes it worse for sure. Also, I agree that if you start trying to find inspiration through others, you get some sort of mojo, just not yours… Keep on rocking it, Tiffany!

  • Anne

    Excellent tips. I am also an “early riser” and I love that everything is so quiet and for the same reason I love working out in the morning. It just starts the day in the best way
    xx A // http://awayandtogether.com

  • Jess | Rose & Fig

    Tip no. 5 is so spot on! Periods of “frolicking” in something that seems unrelated are so important to the creative process.

    As are periods of frustration, according to another great writer on the creative process, Maria Popova / Brain Pickings – for example, https://www.brainpickings.org/2012/03/26/flash-rosenberg-jonah-lehrer-imagine/

  • laney s

    patiently waiting for your diy daybed mattress tutorial. could be the perfect solution for my upcoming move. :)

  • Viki

    I think at times we all feel empty. Really a good idea just to distract, to do something else, not related to work. This can be anything you want. All these methods are good.