Being creative and forward thinking is essential in a marketplace that’s ever changing. So it can be quite frustrating when your well of inspiration for new ideas runs dry.
Here are some steps I take whenever I experience a creative slump that can help you:
Ease your foot off the gas
Putting immense pressure on yourself to produce diamonds doesn’t work when you’re uninspired. Working harder will leave you burnt out.
Take a break and revisit your business after doing other activities you enjoy.
Ultimately, creativity comes from experiences. If all you’re experiencing right now is work (or stressing about work) you may have some trouble.
Some of my best ideas come after I go hiking, watch a good movie, or do other activities outdoors.
I’ve tried hunkering down in front of my laptop until the wee hours of the morning attempting to force creativity — it’s always an epic fail.
Mark Manson shares a similar concept on how to be more productive while working less.
Put the masses on mute
If you’re anything like me, you consume a lot of information about business on a daily basis.
Much of the information is valuable especially topics regarding marketing, sales, and invoice strategy since all three are necessary to actually make money.
But when it comes to creating your special thing or unique edge, there’s only so much guidance you can take from others.
Speaking from experience, imitating a business strategy (consciously or subconsciously) while in a creative slump can do you a disservice.
If you’re over-consuming, your lack of creativity may be a result of hearing too much noise.
Try taking some space to find what makes you original again.
This could be through a short- or long-term fast of all media or simply taking a break from checking out what other businesses are doing.
Be creative in an area unrelated to your business
If you’re a graphic designer, try acting.
Own an e-commerce store? Try drawing.
Dabbling in new methods of expression can spark creativity in your business as well.
I recently started taking a stab at writing fiction. I usually write course material and website content about financial literacy, business, real estate, and entrepreneurship.
Pretty much as far away from fiction as you can get.
Trying a different form of writing got me thinking about new directions and projects for my business that would be unique to my skill set.
This practice can be particularly helpful if you’ve hit a brick wall where it feels like you physically cannot write one more word of copy, design one more logo, produce one more website, or create one more product.
We’ve all been in this situation, so don’t feel alone.
Give yourself freedom to be completely imaginative in something else to exercise your mind.
Being fresh out of new ideas can be terrifying since innovation is important for survival.
Don’t panic, though. Making decisions in panic mode can make it even worse.
Instead, give yourself props for coming up with great ideas before. And have confidence that you’ll come up with great ideas once again because you will.