In college, I was an English major. I wrote paper after paper after paper, until they all got jumbled up in my mind. Lying in bed at night, I might be struck with the perfect conclusion for my paper on women's issues in Victorian literature. Mmmm... good stuff. Today, I work on creating new jewelry items, and then spend hours in front of the computer, updating my shop, connecting with social media, and sharing my life with you in this lovely little blog. One problem that I have faced pretty frequently in the past few years is writer's/creator's block. I can stare at my materials without coming up with any new designs, or get sucked into the sharp white glare of the computer screen. Oh, boy - nothing beats that slack-jawed feeling of inefficiency and total creative impotence; every blink of the cursor is a pounding "fail. ure. fail. ure. "
Of course, I know that creative block is a common problem for many of us who try to make beautiful things. Sometimes, the well just runs dry of any inspiration. My experience has taught me one important thing:
Walk Away. Now.
You are just wasting your time banging your head against that invisible block, when you could be taking some steps to help your creativity bloom:
1. Tidy your workspace. putting things where they should go can help your thoughts fall into place. An uncluttered desk leads to an uncluttered mind.
2. Get moving. Go for a nature hike. Being in nature helps your mind focus on the "now". The exercise will help clear your mind and you might just see something or someone that sparks a new idea!
3. Take a cat nap. This suggestion is the polar opposite of the previous one, but sometimes your brain is just too tired to function right. A 30 minute nap should be enough to refresh you mentally.
4. Switch tracks. Ignore your blog for the moment and revisit that pair of earrings you were working on. Bake some Irish soda bread or try a recipe for oatmeal cookies. Get out of the house and hit the bookstore or the craft store to find new inspiration.
5. Start an inspiration book. Start writing down your bits of inspiration as they come to you - a blog post idea, a new design for a necklace, etc. When you feel stuck, you can pull out the inspiration book and work from ideas there.
What are some of your favorite ways to beat the block? Please share!