Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Three Solutions to Creative Roadblocks

I have the habit of giving common, non-essential things the ability to distract and deter my progress on my projects that I've set out for myself. This means if I every want to get anything done, I had to come up with some strong coping mechanisms, or counter-habits, to keep me from becoming a recluse who never achieved her dreams. Anyway. Four things prompted this post, and I think that it will help you finally get into the process of creating whatever it is.

Step One.
Now, I'm not on to cheat on my future husband but sometimes you just need an attractive British man's music to help lead out whatever inspiration you've been sitting on. It's well known that music influences your mental state, and you should be mindful as to how your soundtrack is or is not promoting a creative environment. So, make progress and listen to this.

My generation believes that life is better with a soundtrack. If you don't like Benny (picture above) then find a suitable replacement. Just don't waste the entire afternoon looking up music. Here, I'll help: use Songza. Pick your mood music (my favorite is Rainy Day Indie) and then get working. An advertisement-free soundtrack for your next working sesh. You're welcome.

Step Two.
In reality, this post is not for people who are lacking creative ideas. I can't write to them, I can only write to people who are like me and are sitting on numerous ideas and just need a little push to get going. Seeking creative geniuses only: if you know that you have to create, then you just do. You're not happy pushing paper and you never really graduated from the "finger paint" stage of life.

As I was going through my "starred" items on Google Reader in preparation for it end my seamless reading habits, I came across this old post of John Mark McMillan (one of my favorite songwriters) shared this tweet with on his old retired blog:
You're addicted to inspiration. You consume it but do nothing. You've been inspired enough for a lifetime; it's time to go make something.
What other prompt do you need?

Step Three.
Get lost in the process. For a moment of accountability, right now I am in the process of launching a Youtube channel addressing a specific women's health issue. So far, I have sat around, planing and thinking, and accomplishing little. The reality is that I just need to jump in and produce something. I'm just need to start working at it. Another gem from my starred items mining was this post from a paleo website that featured a recipe, but a delightful life lesson quote at the top:
...once you have collected your information and decide to put it to use you MUST JUST LET IT HAPPEN.
Moving one step further from step two, in this mindset you have to let go of the perfection of what you're imagining and get lost in the process of creation. Things aren't going to be perfect, and even if you had the hundred dollar editing suite and a masterful produce and editor behind you, even then you can't get choked up in the end result. What are you not letting happen? I've been sitting around for the past couple of days working on my Master Thieve's rank in Skyrim and cuddling with my cat. I could have published two videos by now. Be realistic with how unrealistic you're being and get going.

Step Four.
Okay, so you're a creative genius and you have the yearning to create. But you just went through a break up, a job change, you're living with your parents, you got in a minor car accident, and your creative well has run dry. Fortunate for you, a dear friend of mine has been putting the pressure on me to get working on The Artist's Way, a devotional book of sorts to help cultivate creativity. I do believe that eventually you have to leap from the visionary/planning committee chair and into the action chair, but as a counselor, I also want to stress the importance of self care. Don't neglect creation, nor inhibit it.

And if you don't like that song by Benny, then look up his rendition of Call Me Maybe. Trust me, you'll be ditching Carly's version by the end of the first chorus. Honestly, I could of stopped writing after that first point because I believe that there are few things that an attractive British musician can't solve.

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