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15 Tips For Professionals Suffering From Creative Boredom

It’s not uncommon for professionals in creative roles to experience periods of creative boredom or burnout. Whether you’re stuck in a creative rut or simply feeling uninspired, creative boredom can be frustrating and impact the quality of your work, but there are effective ways for creative professionals to get out of this kind of funk.

Below, FCC members share solutions to help you reignite your creativity and get back on track. From trying new approaches to taking breaks and finding inspiration in unexpected places, these ideas can help you overcome creative boredom and unlock your full potential.

1. Leave Some Work For Tomorrow

At the end of each day, stop when you know what to do next. Over time, this will allow you to be more productive. Ernest Hemingway was famous for stopping writing midsentence because he knew how to start the next day to keep the momentum moving. I did the same thing when writing my dissertation. I would begin every day by editing the previous afternoon’s work. – Christopher Mullen, PhD, chrismullen.org

2. Do Something Enjoyable, Relaxing And Repetitive

Science says ideas flow easiest when we’re relaxed, when we’re distracted and when we’re releasing high levels of dopamine. That’s why your best ideas come in the shower or while you’re doing dishes. Induce your creative state by doing something enjoyable, relaxing and repetitive. Showers, walks, meditation and more can improve creativity. – Jessica Sweet, Wishingwell Coaching

3. Change Your Environment

If someone is suffering from creative boredom, I suggest changing the environment. For example, take a few hours and visit an art museum. Think about the projects you want to bring to life and get inspired by the creativity around you. You can ask yourself, “What would Picasso do?” Imagine your projects through the eyes of the artists around you. – Wendy Hanson, BetterManager

4. Learn From People Outside Your Industry

Go to a conference or take advantage of a learning opportunity outside your industry. Listen to innovators in another profession sharing their ideas for change and growth. Seeing innovation through a different lens can reinvigorate you and help you think outside of your traditional box. Sometimes, it can help you see that your industry is not that different and that solutions you learn about might apply to your circumstances. – Jennifer Wilson, ConvergenceCoaching, LLC

5. Get Out Of Your Routine

Change your environment or do something out of the ordinary. Basically, get out of your routine. If you never meditated, try meditating. If meditation doesn’t work, take up a dance class. If you live in the city, go to the countryside. If you live in a small quiet place, visit a vibrant, busy city. Do something that excites you and brings you joy, and your creativity will come back too. – Masha Malka, The One Minute Coach Corp.

6. Get In Touch With Nature

Creativity can’t be forced, but it can be found. Get out in nature on your own, and sit in it quietly to give yourself time and space to reconnect with your greater purpose, vision, goals, ideas and creativity. It doesn’t have to be fancy—toes in a garden, bare feet on grass, sitting on a rock or bench; it’s about time for decompression and expansion to allow the ideas to flow. – Laura DeCarlo, Career Directors International

7. Find Ways To Shift Your Perspective

A shifting of perspective is at the core of development and growth—it’s also a way to not force the “art” into what it “should” look like. A spark of creativity can come from a change in scenery, connecting with people, ideas and sensations. I would suggest considering “drawing” outside of the lines and inside negative spaces. Don’t force it. Pause to try something new and see what emerges! – Adena Johnston, D. Mgt., Lateral Group

8. Connect With Other Creatives To Talk Shop

I suggest taking a break to explore something new, such as learning a new hobby or skill. Also, try expanding creative outlets by experimenting with different ideas and techniques. Make sure to practice self-care and find ways to relax and reset the mind, such as by taking a yoga class or going for a walk. Finally, connect with other creatives in the community—talk shop and get inspired! – Peter Boolkah, The Transition Guy

9. Make Space In Your Life

In my experience, creativity dries up when our lives are too packed and we narrow the focus of our attention to get through everything. Pause. Cancel a few appointments. Leave blockers in your calendar for doing what you feel like doing at that moment. Un-plan. Go as slowly as your breath, or your feet, and creativity will find its way through to you again. – Alessandra Marazzi, Alessandra Marazzi GmbH

10. Don’t Try To Fix It; Embrace It

If we can lessen resistance to what’s real, we can allow for more flow. Assume that this period of boredom is fertilizing inspired thoughts that are about to sprout. Then, commit to following any impulse that feels spacious, generative and/or expansive. We unlock dormant energy and begin to create momentum when we focus on anything that breathes life into our souls. – Amy Wong, Always On Purpose

11. Tap Into Your Inner Child’s Curiosity

If a client who works in a highly creative role were suffering from creative boredom, I would suggest they tap into their inner child and let curiosity take over. Engage in activities that inspire and relax you to get excited about creating again. – Jevon Wooden, Live Not Loathe

12. Take Stock Of Your Values

Since boredom results from no longer finding meaning in the activity or activities we’re doing, I’d recommend taking stock of your values. We change over time, and so do our values. What brought meaning before may no longer serve you. I recommend exploring the feelings resulting from visualizing yourself in a new creative endeavor to find meaning that resonates. – Jakob Franzen, The Modern Coaching Company

13. Join A Design Thinking Class Or Hackathon

I would suggest participating in a design thinking class or local hackathon in your industry. Working with others to crack open potential solutions for a problem usually gets the creativity going in your own role as well. – Karan Rhodes, Shockingly Different Leadership (SDL)

14. Explore New Creative Outlets

Explore new creative outlets or hobbies outside of your current work. This could include taking up a new form of art, trying out a different style of writing or music, or even taking a cooking or dance class. By expanding your creative horizons, you may be able to find inspiration and new ideas that can be applied to your current role. – Jonathan H. Westover, Ph.D, Human Capital Innovations, LLC

15. Try The ‘Morning Pages’ Exercise

Many of my clients work in the arts and swear by cult classic, The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron to reignite creativity. I recommend her “Morning Pages” exercise: As soon as you wake up, write three pages in longhand—no judgments, no constraints, just three pages. In our world with so many inputs, this exercise invites us to get what’s in our head out and onto the page, making space for new ideas. – Jennifer Zaslow, Clear Path Executive Coaching

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