What To Do When You’ve Lost Your Creativity
When you are a creative person, feeling that you’ve lost your creativity is horrible.
When that well of ideas that so often seems to be bubbling over dries up.
When you have nothing.
Not a single idea.
If this is you, don’t worry.
It happens to all of us from time to time and it’s usually only temporary. Your creativity is not lost forever, it’s just taken itself off for a nap.
How to Regain Your Lost Creativity
This might seem like a weird place to start, but feeling uncreative often goes hand in hand with feeling tired, stressed and burnt out.
If being creative is your job (or if you are working hard at making it become your job!), churning out idea after idea on demand can be difficult and at times a little bit stressful. You need creativity to strike and when it doesn’t, it just makes it worse!
It might be that you just need a break. So take some time away from it. Go for a walk. Call a friend. Spend time with people who are important to you. An afternoon might be enough, or you might need a few days. Doing something else is sometimes enough for your lost creativity to return.If you are feeling tired, sleep! Nobody has their best ideas (or does their best work!) when they are tired. Creativity is more likely to flow if you are feeling perky.
If you are going through a stressful time, you might just have to put everything else on hold and deal with whatever it is that’s going on. Moving house, looking after a newborn, divorce, death of a loved one, these things especially will take it it out of you and you’ll have to focus your energy on sorting things out or getting through it and out of the other side.
Creativity can be a good outlet for dealing with ongoing stress, but be kind to yourself. Being stressed out doesn’t usually result in amazing creative ideas. So if you are stressed but you need to make stuff, keep things simple. Try making something that you’ve made before, or that is similar to something you’ve made before. Don’t try anything too ambitious. Don’t burn the candle at both ends trying to get things finished either! Sleep, eat regular meals and exercise. Then do what you can.
Here are some more ideas if you’ve lost your creativity.
Look at What You Have Already
If you’ve been making stuff for a while, you’ve probably accumulated a collection of bits and pieces. Things left over from other projects, stuff bought on sale, things you saw and knew you needed, but you didn’t know what for! Have a rummage and you will probably find some treasures that you’d forgotten you had. Creativity may strike in the process.Unfinished projects are another good place to start. My unfinished projects pile includes stuff that’s gone wrong! You might feel inspired to finish something, or to change it, or to turn it into something else.
If the ideas above are not working, have a look at some of the things you have made previously. Could you make something similar? Or make another version that’s better? Or a version that is different (think different fabric, extra pockets, quilted, appliqued or decorated in some other way)?
Look For Inspiration In Other Places
Obviously you don’t want to copy other people’s ideas, but looking at what other people have made and working out how you could do something similar but that is your own can be a good place to start. As Voltaire said, “Originality is nothing but judicious imitation”.
Places to look for ideas include:
Blogs (including linkups). My favourites include Creating My Way to Success, Sew Can Do, Threading My Way, Flamingo Toes and Sum Of Their Stories.
Other craft sites like Craft Gossip, All Free Sewing and Craft Gawker
Even if you haven’t lost your creativity and you have plenty of ideas, looking at what else is out there is a way of feeding your creativity and keeping up to date with what’s out there.
I wouldn’t normally recommend doing this for a number of reasons. Shopping to fill an empty feeling in your soul is a bad idea because you will never be able to buy enough stuff to fill it, you might end up in debt and possibly on one of those TV shows about hoarders. More stuff is usually not the answer.
However, if you’ve lost your creativity, buying one thing might be enough to give you an idea for something you could make. For example, looking at bag handles might inspire you to come up with a design for a bag, or you might have an idea for using a lace zip. The important thing here is to think about how you might use it, so that you don’t end up just shopping for it’s own sake.You could visit your local craft shop but if you are like me and prefer not to leave the house unless it’s absolutely necessary, these are my favourite online sewing/ craft shops:
Try Something New
Sometimes trying something new is a way of giving your brain a break.
If you usually sew, try crochet.
If you normally crochet, try making a wreath for your front door.
If you make cards, try upcycling a tatty piece of furniture.
There are kits on Amazon that have everything you need to get started (affiliate link).
So if you have lost your creativity, don’t worry. It hasn’t abandoned you and it will come back. A rest and /or a bit of a nudge will bring it back. 🙂
Linking up here.