Monday, October 20, 2014

Ten Tips To Block Creativity


Do you want to live a creative life but sometimes feel something is holding you back? Guess what? It’s most likely you. Those obstacles you feel are in your way and block your creativity are the negative attitudes/thoughts/choices you allow into your life, that have the biggest impact and keep you stuck. From a writerly point of view, consider how your creativity suffers. I don’t know about you, but I am guilty of some of the following points:

I get too tired. Know that feeling of working late when you should be relaxing and winding down?

Eat sugar. Drink caffeine. How did I get tempted by coffee and a biscuit instead of water and fruit?

Take on extra work. Learn to say ‘no’. Saying ‘no’ doesn’t mean you are being rude; neither does it mean you are being disagreeable. It’s how you say ‘no’, rather than the fact you’re saying no, that affects the outcome. After all, you have your own priorities and needs, just like everyone has his/her own needs. Saying no is about respecting and valuing your time and space.

Spend time with energy vampires. Don’t fight them. Don't argue or get defensive, or tell them they're wrong. As soon as you do this and interact with them directly, you are pulled into their drama. Stay away from them. Rather say no to that invitation that doesn’t appeal to you.

Beat myself up for what I haven't achieved. Why not see the successes?

Compare myself with others. When I know their world is so different to mine. Remember, each individual’s talent, contribution and value is unique to that person, and to his purpose in this world.

Worry. 80-90 percent of what you fear will happen, never really becomes a reality. They are just monsters in your own mind. And if they happen then they will most often not be as painful or bad as you expected.

Forget to go out and play. Moderation and balance are things that we don't often think about in life. It's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day tasks. Addictions can take hold of us quickly and devour us. Moderation and balance = a little bit of this, a little bit of that, not too much and not too little, just right.

Feel there's no time, so don't get started. Every moment counts. Remember your life is not lived one day or one hour at a time. It is lived one moment at a time. The only thing you have absolute control over are your choices right now in this moment, so make the most out of this moment - and every one that comes after it. Even ten minutes is worth getting started for.

Cut out the clear thinking time. We all know that these moments of space are so important. Your brain needs that downtime. Mental breaks increase productivity, replenish attention, solidify memories and encourage creativity. 

Can you relate to any of these? Want to share any thoughts/ experiences of things that block your creativity?

18 comments:

Elsie Amata said...

Oh my goodness, Michelle, I resonated with so much of this. I used to be terrible about saying no. Especially at work. I would feel guilty. Now, I understand the importance of putting your own needs ahead of most others. And, surrounding yourself with negative people is so very draining - you nailed this post. Thank you!

Elsie

Murees Dupé said...

I am embarrassed right now because you just described everything I do. You are so right when you say it blocks creativity. Great post and thank you for giving me a creative wake-up call.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Stress not related to my writing life is slowing me down. Being aware of its existence helps me some but I'm still not meeting my production goals.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Worrying is such a drain and most of it never comes to pass.

Christine Rains said...

Worry was one of my big energy drainers, but I've gotten better with that. Now if only I could learn to say no more often!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Just say no! It'll be all right.
That's why I enjoy playing my guitar. It's my brain's time to chill.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

thank you for this list. I really, really needed to read this. Long story, but it feels as if you wrote this for me. Happy Monday!!!

Janie Junebug said...

Excellent tips. These are spot on. I block myself frequently with my fears.

Love,
Janie

cleemckenzie said...

I know those Monsters only too well. Have to keep telling myself they're of my creation and not really out there. Thanks for the quick list to help unblock that creativity.

meganmorganauthor.com said...

Let's see, check...check...check...yep, I can relate!

Patricia Lynne said...

Stress and fatigue are the biggest ones for me. When I'm stressed, I can't think of anything else. When I'm tired, there's just no energy to muster to do what I'd like to do.

Catherine A. Winn said...

Beat myself up for what I haven't achieved...oh, wow, that's me! Thanks for stopping by my blog, Michelle!

Jennifer Chandler said...

WONDERFUL post! YES! I'm guilty of most of these, especially the worry and thinking that there's no time so why bother. Thank you for the reminder that our lives are lived in MOMENTS.

~ Jen

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Michelle - it's so easy to get put off by things we don't want to do .. prevaricate over those and then when we've done them .. think what on earth was I thinking about ...

The main thing is to achieve what we need to get done .. enjoy the time off and all those fun things that give us a balanced life ...

Cheers Hilary

Fundy Blue said...

Excellent post, Michelle! I think I've been guilty of each one of these at one time or another!

Michelle Wallace said...

Elsie, it took me a LONG TIME to learn the word - no.

Murees, I'm so glad I could give you a creative wake-up call!

Susan, a step-at-a-time; I'm sure you'll get there...

L.Diane, I realised that late in life.

Christine, as I mentioned before, it took me very long to learn both (too long actually...)

Alex, I still feel a slight twinge when I say no, but not for long...

Joylene, happy that I could help.

Janie, we're all guilty of it, eh?

Cheryl Lee, larger-than-life-monsters that don't even exist! LOL

Megan Morgan, seems I hit the spot today...

Patricia Lynne, I really hope that there comes a time when you can work through and learn to manage and also reduce the fatigue & stress...

Catherine, we need to stop doing that. *sigh*

Jennifer, moment-by-moment, Jen!

Hilary, hindsight is always an eye-opener, when we realise that it didn't turn out so bad, after all...

Fundy Blue, welcome to the 'I've-been-guilty-of-that' club!

Gisele LeBlanc said...

Great post, Michelle! I think it's important to not feel guilty about taking down time, too--something I used to do. Now, I realize that it's essential and don't let the guilt seep in. :)

Anna Nordeman said...

Good advice!
Thanks for this.
Anna