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Hit a wall? 10 Ways to Spark Creativity

Trying to be a creative genius takes its toll. Everybody hits the creative wall now and again, so here we have compiled 10 of our top tips to get your motivation back and get the creative juices flowing.

1. Mind Mapping

Write your brief or project in the centre of your page, then surround it with all of your thoughts. It doesn’t matter if your initial ideas are very basic as even abstract thought might lead to a great idea. A page with all of your ideas will help you to track your thought process and help you to gain an understanding of what you really want to create.

Why not get even more creative? Use post-it notes – stick them to your wall to create a collage of ideas!

2. Take a Break!

Working until you burn-out is not always the best approach to take. Your work may seem rushed, with your lack of motivation showing in the quality. Chill out for a while, go for a coffee or for a relaxing walk. When you return back to the task, your fresh eyes and relaxed mind will help you to produce exciting content.

3. Keep a notebook

When you first sit down to work on a project you might struggle to produce ideas. Do not fear, as ideas can strike at any moment. You might have an epiphany when you’re sitting on  a bus, brushing your teeth or even while you’re dreaming. Make sure to keep a notebook with you at all times  – you never know when it will prove to be useful. Write down inspirational quotes or stick creative images in it. Flip through when you hit that ‘creative wall’.

4. Communication

Sometimes it’s useful to source other opinions. Whilst you might be scared of criticism, in the long run this will strengthen your project because others may be able to find errors which you have previously overlooked. Group work can be a great environment to work in, as when you’re part of a group, your ideas can be bounced back and forth from each person, working together to develop and build on your project.

5. Research

No matter what project you’re undertaking, it’s always useful to research other creatives and have a look at their work. This might involve reading the latest book on marketing techniques, analysing the works of Pablo Picasso, or even simply looking through your colleague’s portfolio. Learning to appreciate the work of others is important, and it can spark some exciting ideas of your own.

6. Exercise

If you’re not a fitness buff, ‘exercise ‘ might be a negative on this list. However, exercising releases a feel-good chemical called ‘endorphins’. Endorphins help to relieve stress and encourage positive thinking. What more do we need to add? Put on those running shoes!

7. De-clutter

Sometimes, a messy work-station can encourage messy work. Allowing yourself a pleasant area to work in will make you feel more comfortable, and hopefully your organised environment will encourage an organised attitude towards your work schedule.

8. Write Lists

Writing lists is a way of prioritising your workload and setting yourself small goals. By separating your tasks into achievable targets, you’ll feel more motivated to tackle the first thing written on the list. Ticking off your completed tasks is also hugely satisfying.

9. Music

Some people find it hard to concentrate in a quiet environment. Try listening to some music in the background whilst you work.

10. Attend events

There are always exciting events happening in your subject area. There are tons of events and festivals happening all over the country – from literary festivals to public lectures at universities. Hearing an inspirational talk may be just the prompt to get you started.

 

Alastair Dickie

11th June 2015