As designers, we’ve all been there before. We have different names for it; creativity block, stuck in a rut, sucks-ville. Nothing we produce seems up to par with our personal expectations. We are hacks and ready to throw in our wacom tablets and surrender our moleskins to the design gods…for we have failed them.
I’m obviously being overly dramatic, but sometimes that’s exactly how it feels. Over the years, I have developed some tactics to help motivate and inspire myself to start creating things that I’m proud of once again. Here are a few of them.
Change Your Mindset
Sometimes I begin worrying so much about my timeline or how important a certain project is that I prevent myself from focusing on actually doing the work. I’ve found it helps to task out what I think I can accomplish in just the present day and then focus on one task at a time, rather than worry about the project as a whole.
There is creativity all around you. Some of it is on demand and at your fingertips. I find myself perusing sites like Tumblr, Behance and Pinterest for unique ideas. I get motivation from podcasts like The 99% Invisible and talks from design conferences.
Often the best solutions come from actually forcing yourself to not think about the problem. I am definitely someone who needs to break away from my work periodically to gain clarity. Exercising, reading, and experimenting with new cooking recipes are all activities that I really enjoy and they can also help to clear my mind and bring down my level of frustration.Shutting down your laptop and interacting with people is a great way of introducing new perspectives. There are so many people with so many different stories to tell. Why not attend a networking event or art event at your local coffee shop? There are many websites like Meetup that provide ways for people with similar interests to get together and collaborate.
Go out and live your life. Try something new. Who knows what you can learn and how it can positively impact whatever you are working on!
Ride It Out
It’s not ideal, but sometimes you simply have to ride out your creativity block. Just know that it won’t last forever. When you finally do get back into the swing of things, it’s usually accompanied with a renewed love in what you do and a spark that just might even inspire others you work with.
Those are some ways I deal with my creative block. What works for you?