As someone who enjoys the art of creating something from nothing, I can’t think of anything more frustrating than what I’d like to call a “creative drought.” Here are three ways I’m able to get out of my own head and start fresh:
It’s easier said than done, but turning off my phone, laptop, and TV (for at least one hour) every other day really helps me to think about what direction my project is going. Whether it’s product styling, stationery design, a custom curated gift box or writing a meaningful post, for those sixty minutes, I don’t have the distraction of emails or notifications. It’s just me and my work; our own time to connect. To produce creations of value (I’m talking an emotional accomplishment here), I owe it to my works to set aside one-on-one time with them. I find that when I do this, my creative process becomes more about what my work expects of me, as opposed to what other people are expecting of me. Weird? Probably. Is it efficient though? Oh, yes.
With my eyes closed, I like to take slow, mindful sips of beverages that put me in a positive mood. This helps to clear my mind of all things “meh” and focus on the tastes dancing on my tongue, truly savoring the complex flavors and envisioning places or people I’d love to revisit or see for the first time. Also, it’s been proven that tastes and smells can take you back to a special (or not so special) period in your life. When I’ve experienced this, I’ve let the memories wash over me until I was left with nothing but a new starting point and a creative urge I couldn’t shake. Not all memories are happy ones, so I’ve forced myself to embrace those, too. Each memory — good and bad — make up my story, my history; and within the creative realm, help to push me even harder to have empathy for my clients (who’ve experienced heartbreaking situations, themselves) and show me that past pain can be turned into a piece of art for the world to see.
As a mama to a teeter-tottering toddler, I value my privacy when it’s available to me. If I’ve had a long day taking care of my little one and feel completely burnt out (which means zero creative juices flowing), I tend to stick to a simple routine that generally does the trick — a steamy shower followed by a facial mask, moisturizer, and quick mani-pedi. If I have some extra time, although uncommon, I head to the spa and truly unwind. Soaking up all those good vibes does wonders! #treatyoself, because you’re worth it.
Embracing any one (or all three) of these suggestions can help you go from “creative drought” to “creative sea”. These tips work for me; I hope they do the same for you!
X, Britt Cohen