There are different names for it; call it burnout, call it a lack of passion. Whatever you name you choose, it simply means absence of inspiration, and whether you choose to admit or not, it is really having an impact on your work and your life.
We have to realize that no one can is a fount of wisdom and inspiration all the time, but the people who tend to churn out more of it don’t always come by it naturally and without work. Often, they have to use every trick in the book to keep the ideas flowing.
You’re not the only one to suffer from a lack of inspiration – and you certainly don’t have to be the only one continuing to wallow in that low spot. When you need some new ideas, try any or all of these handy tricks.
Here are a few things to do when inspiration is on the low
1. Space Out
Your school teacher might not agree, but there is value in checking out from the hustle and bustle of the world and daydream for a while. Daydreaming – in this regards refers to taking a mental break – can give your brain the break it needs to open up to new ideas or new inspirations.
Sure, you might look like you’re part dazed and confused for a while, but in the end, shutting down from everything around you could lead to that bolt of inspiration that gets you paid, promoted, or otherwise makes you look really good.
2. Steal Ideas
Yep, you read right! So, your boss expects something (obviously a mind blowing idea) on his desk by the end of the day today, and you still lack any sort of ideas whatsoever. You don’t have a single idea in your head, but you have to give him something. What to do?
When you are short on inspiration, getting ideas from other people is not a bad thing. A simple online search about your topic is likely to turn up lots of forums, blog posts, and articles about the thing you’re supposed to be doing. Likewise, you might have books, magazines, or even movies sitting around that pertain to your topic.
Yeah, I totally understand that you’re supposed to come up with inspired, innovative ideas, and not recycled ones, so instead of completely ‘copying and pasting’ the ideas you find from those sources already around you, try to come up with one teeny weeny little way to differentiate. It might not win you the innovator of the year award, but it will give you something to produce for that all-important deadline. And, who knows? Reading and looking at all that material that pertains to your topic might actually give you some real-life inspiration, as well.
3. Take Notes
It sounds over flogged, but taking notes really can help you get in the mood. This is something of a bone you throw yourself bit by bit over time. Anytime and anywhere you see something that might be an inspiration at a later date or an idea that you can expand upon, toss it onto your note.
When I say take notes, I don’t mean you should limit it to pen and paper, use any means at your disposal. You might not know why something stands out for you, but don’t ask questions. Just add ideas as they come, and then tap into those ideas when your well of inspiration has gotten low.
4. Get Off Your Mobile and Get Out There
Surfing through the net and looking through media materials that are related to your topic is not the only way to gain inspiration for your job or creative project, either. In fact, I have come to from experience that inspiration tends to strike more freely when you’re doing something completely unrelated to the topic. If you spend your days doing the same thing, day in and day out, it’s no wonder that you’re bored and devoid of new ideas.
You need to get out more!
Change location for a bit, go to a part of town you’ve never been and try a new restaurant, take a walk, do something different. Talk about the issue to someone who is totally unconnected to you and your work. Get out of town and go see something that you never imagined you wanted to see. If you’re a theatre lover, for example, go to a heavy metal concert. If you’re a metal head, go to the symphony. Most times, the reason for your lack of inspiration is a no-brainer; you have trudged the same mental path over and over that your mind is pretty much living on autopilot.
Thus, getting out more is not just something that could help inspiration strike – and benefit you in work – but it also might give you more zest for life.
5. Do Something Out of Your comfort Zone
As humans, we all have those things that we avoid like the plague because they’re just so difficult or fear-inducing. And like Dapper Codes said, “The things we fear the most, have already happened to us.” Or will eventually happen to us. So it doesn’t matter how far you push doomsday, it will keep pushing back at you till your back is up against the wall. So hey, face your fears already. Attempt to do that thing that you think you cannot do.
When you’re out of ideas and inspiration, it may be time to face those things once again. For one, they’re obviously things that you have to do eventually. For another, getting through a really difficult task can bring back some of the gratitude about the easier things in life.
6. Just Give Up Already
Ok, so you have taken all the advice listed here and you’re still not feeling inspired. While there are a lot of factors that might be responsible for your lack of inspiration, there’s one thing you should keep in mind: you’re just overthinking it all. Stop worrying and stop trying.
Just stop everything. Whether it’s a quick space-out in the middle of the workday or a period in which you don’t try to come up with new ideas for several weeks at a time, laying off and leaving the problem alone can sometimes do wonders. Sure, in the meantime, someone else in the office might come up with the most brilliant idea ever, but that’s a chance you’re going to have to take.
Having a shortage or lack of inspiration doesn’t make you a boring human, a bad artist, or a sucky creative person – even if it feels like you may be all three once in a while. But it’s how you learn to work through that slump that will separate you from the pack. Trust me, you’ll get through this.
What do you do when you lack inspiration? Share your tips and tricks with us in the comments section below!What to Do When You Lack Inspiration by Stellamaris Obomanu