I believe there is creativity in all of us. Being able to unlock that part of ourselves and generate beautiful work can be hindered by the roadblocks we put up. This blog series is meant to bring to light things we do that can hinder our creativity.
If you haven’t yet read my first blog post – Stifling Creativity: Things We Should Stop Doing – check that out first and come back to read the rest of this list. Make sure you follow my blog to get the update when I post part 3 in this blog series!
Here are five more things that are killing our creativity.
6. Failing to Take Risks: It’s easy to look at what everyone else is doing and try to stay somewhere between those lines. But being the same as everyone else is boring and certainly not the way to be creative. Your work probably won’t make a great impact on someone if you’re playing it safe – doing what everyone else has already been doing.
Create that thing you’ve always wanted to create without thinking about how people will receive it. Share your work and when the negativity comes because you’re different – Don’t let it stop you.
Instead – Take risks. Dare to be different.
7. Not having time to develop your craft. Being a master of any craft takes time. If you’re especially dedicated to your work, you may soon feel like you never have time to dedicate to research and improvement. It’s true there’s no substitute for practice, but I’ve lost count of the times where I’ve been involved in some type of learning experience where I discovered a new writing technique – One that awoke a new talent inside myself and made me feel inspired. Keep an eye out for learning opportunities – seminars, blog posts, courses, books, etc. – that can awaken your creative juices by making you stronger in your craft.
Instead – Seek out learning opportunities to make your craft stronger. Learn from others. Read widely.
8. Feeding distractions. Filling time meant for your craft with other activities is a great way to completely stomp out the creative process. Maybe you planned to get something meaningful accomplished and then realize a half hour has passed that you spent on Twitter. There will always be something you’d rather be doing – social media, chatting with your best friend, shopping on Amazon, making lists, organizing your gel pen collection, etc. Then you end up feeling awful about yourself for wasted time, and you either give up or get little else accomplished. Stop the trend by dedicating specific time to your craft and refusing to fill it with other activities.
Writer’s Tip: I’ve found participating in writing sprints to be great for staying on task – I’ll write for an hour while I ban myself from social media, leave my phone off, and let my family know I’m unavailable.
Instead – Minimize distractions. Honor your dedicated work time.
9. Forgetting to do the things that inspire you. When up against deadlines, deciding to also carve out time for another task may seem counterintuitive. But how much better it is to work on your craft when you’re feeling fresh and invigorated! Think about what things inspire you and schedule in time to devote to those things (for me, these are things like music, walks in the mountains, gardening, great movies, quotes, chocolate…).
Instead – Actively seek inspiration, and take time for the things that awaken your creativity.
(I just started an herb garden, and I swear I get new writing ideas every time I tend to my plants. There is nothing more inspiring to me than nourishing life in the form of tiny seedlings that will one day be fresh, tasty, and healthy!)
10. Critiquing your work too early. When starting something new, do you revise as you go or wait until draft one is complete? Do you ever get frustrated when you feel like you are stopping every five minutes to change something? For the writer, creativity can be stifled when a person is constantly looking out for filter words, pausing to check grammar rules, or worrying about whether or not their writing is evoking emotion. Try letting your creativity flow unhindered in the first draft. Save the critique for later.
Instead – Critique your work only when you’re ready to revise. Before then, just be thankful for the fresh words on your page.
So those are my #6-10! My next blog post will include my last five. Don’t forget to follow my blog, so you get the update when I get that one up.
Let’s Chat! – Do you notice any of these things stifling your creativity or am I the only one? Leave me a comment in the reply box below!
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