Jen Goode is both geek and creative, a professional artist combing the worlds of internet marketing with art to share her passion for creativity. She is a work-at-home mom of three, social media enthusiast and the “doodler in charge” of JGoode Designs, a Denver based art and design studio. Jen's work has been published in a number of magazines, is a featured contributor for sites around the web and shares her insight about business and creativity at 100Directions.com.
Do you ever find yourself stuck for creative ideas just when you need them most? Maybe you have a project you’ve been wanting to make or a gift you’d like to create for someone special. The pressure of coming up with the perfect idea can sometimes be the only reason the idea well is dry. If you’ve read this far and your only thought is “I didn’t have any ideas to begin with”, well this brainstorming list should help you too. Clear your mind, relax and get ready to get creative!
7 ways to work through a creative block
- Relax - the more you worry about coming up with the great idea, the harder it will be to focus on the ideas you have. Sometimes little ideas can become big, wonderful, beautiful ideas if we just stop worrying about how wonderful they will be.
- Fidget and Fiddle - grab a couple of your craft supplies, markers, stamps, glitter packets, thread and yarn or whatever you like to create with and just start tinkering with them. Exam them, line them up, order them, stack them. Play with them as if they were alphabet blocks. Get your hands on them and see if something doesn't spark an idea just toying with your tools.
- Doodle - I don't care if you think you can't draw, doodling can be done by anyone. Grab a pen (not a pencil, there is no erasing in doodling) and just draw whatever comes to mind. Draw objects, abstracts and even words (aka writing). Doodle for a good 10 minutes without critiquing, set a timer if you have to. Sometimes you might find you've doodled a new, brilliant idea.
- Word Association - start with one word and add upon it with single words that relate to the last. Example: start with Black, what comes next? For me I say, white, then cotton ball, puffy, cloud, sky, bird, tree, apple, pie, baking, Grandma, apron, fabric, sewing.... and the list goes on an on. If you have a specific topic you need to be creative with, use a related word to start your association word play but don't censor yourself as you brainstorm.
- Cut and Paste - make a collage like you did when you were a kid. Grab some junk mail, magazines, fabric straps and whatever else you have handy and just start cutting up pieces. Glue it all onto a piece of paper and watch your mind start moving along as the imagery and glue become your new BFFs.
- Browse Creativity - check out what others are doing, related or not, with their own creative adventures. If you find some of your block is due to comparing talents or intimidation, stop looking at the ideas with the mindset that makes you feel incapable. Instead, look at what creativity is out there, write down your own thoughts of what you'd like to create and browse your own fantastic creations - remind yourself how fabulously talented you are!
- Take care of you first - sometimes we aren't as creative as we'd like to be because we're tired, stressed, hungry or just not up to par with our A game. Too much work is bad for the creative mojo, so make sure you're taking care of you because you try to be creative for everyone else.
There are so many ways to inspire creativity within our own minds. Usually the biggest block is our own inner voice telling us why our ideas aren't enough or that our ideas can't be done. If we stop over complicating and just go back to the way we thought when we were kids, we'd be able to create masterpieces we're proud of every day!
Thanks for the great info Jen!!