I like to think that I’m a good writer, and not because my prose is effortless, or my characters leap from the pages — although I do hope those things are true. I like to think I’m a good writer because I write.
I write as often as I can — in notebooks, on my laptop, in my head, wherever. I write novels, lists, sometimes nonsense that helps me make sense of what I’m feeling.
But sometimes I can’t write.
Every writer, artist and creative type has these moments when creativity takes a holiday and we’re left twiddling our thumbs, reminiscing about the times when we felt creative. My best tips for getting over these creative blocks is to find out what’s causing them and finding a way to work around it.
When these times hit, it’s best to take a few steps back and think. Loss of creativity can be caused by so many different things. Reflect on that. Look at your life and try and find if there is something that may be hindering you. Stress, family troubles, work drama, you missed the last episode of Gogglebox. If you’re able to identify these problems, you’re one step closer to working out a resolution and, hopefully, reconnecting with your creativity.
Overworking can also be a factor. As a creative, you may work from home and place a lot more pressure on yourself to stay motivated and get shit done. I know that this is certainly my problem. Go easy on yourself. Treat your work like a real job, set ground rules for yourself. Start at 10, lunch at 12:30 and clock off at 5. Or whatever fits best for you. Also, give yourself a weekend! Whether it’s actually Saturday and Sunday or Thursday and Friday, fit a designated break into your week. This seriously helps to make you feel less guilty in your off time and way more productive and, most importantly, creative in your work time!
Get Back To Basics
A great way to find creativity again is to look to other creators. This can mean immersing yourself in a book, heading out to a gallery or catching up with another artsy pal to discuss ideas and projects. It might mean watching a favourite movie, looking at things like dialogue and how a scene is framed, to help inspire your own creative bug to bite again. I love hanging up art and surrounding myself with it in my space to have constant inspiration. When this fails me, a walk also helps. Go out and grab a coffee, sit amongst some people and let the world inspire you. Your creativity will soon rear its magical head and you’ll be back in the game in no time.
So, push on, my fellow creatives, and find your flow! Life has its ups and downs and your work probably will too but once you find the way, you’ll find the will.