It’s completely normal to feel uninspired with your work at times, even though it’s a sentiment not often communicated well within creative circles. Your creativity isn’t gone; it just needs a restart. You’re extraordinarily normal for hitting a dry spell and here’s how we’re going to get you out of it.
Step away from the project
Long-term projects are very often the source of a creative dry spell. In order to reignite your creative passion, step away from your project for a time. Even if you’re under a tight deadline, you can do it. Go hiking, explore a museum, or try a new recipe. The goal is to resupply your creative energy so you can come back to your project with a renewed sense of purpose and excitement.
Create for the sake of creating
Dry spells can be terrifying for a professional creative. It means your livelihood could be at risk, which might make you feel even more pressured to perform. However, being controlled by this stress isn’t going to help you — remembering why you started is. Instead of getting jammed between sending invoices and creating art, choose to create for the sake of creating.
This simple act of separating your creative worth from your income, even for an afternoon, will help you find joy in it again. Once you find your spark, you can take it back to your professional life and continue thriving. Sometimes, though, you need a reset that only comes from trying something new.
Try a new medium
Very often our creative dry spells surround our art because we work in the same medium day after day. To help break out of the creative rut, try a new one. Throw it back to childhood and grab some Sculpey or create your own “shot on iPhone” contest with friends.
The more you can transition your focus from one chosen medium to another, the better you can evolve your art and get your spark back.
Collaborate with a friend
Friends and creativity go together like freelancers and co-working spaces, making it one of my favorite ways to break out of a creative rut. This is also an easy choice because creativity attracts creativity.
If you’re a designer, work with a writer to create custom prints. If you’re a musician, collaborate on another musician’s record. This can be for a side project or for income; the most important part is to shake up your creative process so you can create something incredible together.
Hit the open road for inspiration
One of the best self-expanding decisions I’ve made was taking a solo road trip to a city a few hours away. I went off the grid, explored new coffee shops, and worked on my personal writing. By forcing myself out of my routine with a trip rooted in personal growth, I was able to boost my creativity.
Choose a city a few hours away, load up on snacks, music, and podcasts, and line up an Airbnb for the night. Explore local shops, people watch, and use this as inspiration to create. Depending on the area, you can make this happen for under $100. Money well spent if it ends a creative dry spell! If you’d like to save, make it a day trip and pack a picnic lunch to enjoy in a park. Both options provide the same benefit: relaunching your creativity.
Creative ideas never end, but they do evolve, and this often requires moving through a dry spell. Remember: you’re a wonderfully unique artist, whatever your medium, and you will get through this. Support your creativity, and it will support you through every tough moment to bring you through to a thriving creative life.