If you’re feeling doubt, frustration, failure and no motivation to do anything, that’s perfectly normal. Take it as a sign to rest… to take a break… to take a day or two off and play if you can.
Recreation says it all: it is to re-create.
So take a break when you need to. Enjoy activities that refresh and inspire you to re-create your sense of enthusiasm, wonder and optimism. Recreation in balance is like rest, it’s essential and refreshes your aspirations and the resolve to bring them about.
Once refreshed, you’re likely to be very ready to dive back into creating. If not, we have additional ideas below that should help.
AUDIO ARTICLE: No Motivation to do Anything?
“Never let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”
~John Wooden, basketball coach, author, 1910-2010
Creative Highs and Lows
Everyone experiences highs and lows and some historical talented creators are well known for erratic swings between genius and madness. Most of us can relate to dramatic swings between creative euphoria and paralyzing doubt.
Blank Page Syndrome
Some are stunted by “Blank Page Syndrome“, which is another way of describing the concept of having a million ideas… until you sit down to create. Suddenly, your mind is blank.
Nothing is more simultaneously ominous and exciting to a creator than a blank page, canvas, sheet, or state of mind. Sometimes we have so many ideas rushing in that it can be hard to know where to start.
Other times it’s a discouraging lull of a blank page, which can lead to feeling stuck or even inadequate.
From Excitement to Overwhelm
Alternately, creators can also easily overwhelm themselves because the flow of ideas collect into an ever-growing pile of things to do.
It’s an erratic—almost—manic-depressive kind of thing. Artists, writers and entrepreneurs have heightened energy fueled by the fun and excitement of new ideas and projects, often followed by overwhelm, and getting stuck in a purgatory with no motivation to do anything.
Sometimes it plummets into depression that lasts to the point of a major life disruption, or worse, medications that develop a dependency and suppress the creative life energy.
Other times, it just seems blank up there… the muse has vanished.
Stumped by a Creative Slump
The voices upstairs seesaw between incessant chattering, each over the other, to being so quiet that you have a momentary lapse of sanity and question who you think you are to have had big dreams.
Motivation is a muscle that must be exercised daily, even when we don’t feel like it, and presuming you’ve enjoyed adequate rest and recreation.
The best way to break free of the stifling bonds of inertial is to get moving.
Stump the slump by pushing through it. Yes, you can!
Your Ideas Need You
Give creative shape to your ideas. That’s what they want… to be set in motion to become something.
It’s up to you to give life… to plant them in the fertile soil of effort and nurture them to a life of their own and to be whatever they may become. The more ideas we bring to life, the more ideas we have, and generally, the more motivation will be present with us.
Your ideas brought to life will light your way through shadowlands of slumps.
Don’t wait until you feel like it. You will feel like it because you do it.
The best way to prepare to have ideas when you need them is to listen to and encourage your obsessions.
~Tamora Pierce, American fantasy novelist, b.12/13/1954
No Motivation to do Anything?
We get by with a little help from our friends.
A member of the iCreateDaily group on Facebook posted that she was struggling with motivation to write.
“What do y’all do to get motivated? I have a deadline… I’ve done the research… but I can’t get motivated to actually write new words…” Stephanie asked.
The community rallied to help by sharing their best motivation and mindset tips. We’re sharing that here as a virtual tool chest of possibilities that you can come back to when you’re feeling the gravity of no motivation to do anything.
If you’ve ever stalled out on motivation, these ideas will help.
Pain is temporary. It may last for a minute, an hour, a day, or even a year, but eventually it will subside, and something else will take its place.SOURCE: Why Do We Fail – YouTube
If I quit, however, it will last forever.
8 Motivation Tips from Fellow Creators
1. Watch motivational videos.
Here’s one example of an epic inspirational video.
You can find so many of these epic videos on YouTube if you use search terms like motivational videos, inspiring videos, or positive video. Here’s a playlist.
2. Set up rewards.
“Set up rewards. If I write X number of words, I can take a break and _______, (fill it in with whatever you like). I like chocolate, or a walk, or a swim. Or sometimes a freaking nap. Whatever. Set up some rewards. Do writing sprints with friends.”
~Nicole Mackey, writer, crafter
Here’s an article on writing prompts that may help.
3. Just Start Writing.
“Just start writing. Even if it’s garbage or maybe even good stuff. The activity of writing itself can often break the log-jam. Change your venue-go somewhere else that’s different than where you are stuck. Write by hand, something coherent or just freestyle-whatever pops in your head as you go along for three pages or so. Some other tools I use to get creative juices flowing:
- Read War of Art by Steven Pressfield, or The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.
- Get the 90 Day Journal -a system of goal setting and accountability.
~Coleman Alderson, author, investor, gardener
5. Move around.
“Even if it’s just a quick walk, 10 squats, or some pushups. Get the blood flowing. Let your mind wander or think about an idea intentionally. Both can stimulate creativity.”
~Devani Anjali Alderson, iCreateDaily.com
Here’s are some fast fit tips to get you going.
6. Take Time Off.
“You may just need a day off to play… or a good night’s sleep! Starting in with a well-rested and refreshed body and mind make such a difference.”
~LeAura Alderson, cofounder-iCreateDaily.com
If you have trouble sleeping, this may help.
7. Do different things.
“Do something totally different. When I am stuck and take a shower, do the dishes, grocery shop – anything – ideas start popping into my mind. Your brain sort of puts it on the back burner, but it’s still cooking!!”
~Meredith Hale, Actor
Here are more tips on changing your state.
8. Make a list of words.
“I make a list of words… no sentences. Then I come back later and see if inspiration jumps off the page! Sometimes I find myself abandoning the list in the middle ‘cause I now feel like writing. Once I made a list of words/topics for a poem series that would be set to music. That put my mind at ease since I knew I didn’t have to remember them.
One day a few weeks later, I realized I was ready to write them. I did. I wrote 6 before getting up from the keyboard. No edits. They sorta flowed out. They are now in print as song lyrics!”
~Lynda Suzanne Wright, Artist, photographer, a retired teacher
“Just write… don’t worry about whether they are the right words. You can edit later!”
~Monique Clendinen Watson, CEO BlueGauling Media
9. Clear and Organize!
“When I’m stuck and putting off art-making, there are a couple of sure-fire starters. One is to clear/organize my work area. The other is to write in my process notebook – usually where I am on a piece and what needs doing next.
I can also pull out my box of art ideas and see what I’ve written. But that one’s tricky because sometimes it gives me too many ideas. Then I’m stuck in abundance instead of stuck in scarcity.”
~Lynne Hundley, Artist, Retired Pastor and Editor
Creative Block? You Can Shift Your State
Whenever you encounter a creative block, shifting your state will allow your mind to reset and make space for new creativity.
For lots more inspiration to help you get going, check out these many momentum quotes and shareable memes.
Anyone who dreams of an uncommon life, eventually discovers that there is no choice but to seek an uncommon approach to living it.
~The One Thing book, by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan
Feel free to share what motivates you in the iCreateDaily Facebook Group! We’ll keep this article updated with new ideas for getting unstuck. Meanwhile, here’s another article with simple but powerful ideas to help you power through any obstacle.
Remember, take a break and recreate… re-create — R and R — when you need to, then dive back in and get vigorous.
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