The difficult lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping from old ones

Have you ever found yourself hitting that exasperating creative block or mental wall? I’m certain all of us have experienced that at some point, and we all know how difficult it can sometimes be to overcome that hurdle, push hard and carry on. Sometimes all you need is to refresh your mind a little and we believe we have the cure.

Take a look at the handy infographic below of our top 15 hand-picked strategies on how to remove creative block! 


 1. Carry A Sketchbook

Sketch ideas as they come, even if they’re unrelated to your current project. Then, revisit these ideas when you’re stuck! Did you know that Richard Branson jots down all of his big ideas on a scrappy notepad? Each to their own I guess.

2. Do Something Else

Ideas can be hidden where you least expect it, so do another activity to see what happens. We often find that watching an easy-on-the-eye video helps to relax the mind.

3. Look At Other Things

Creativity can come from anywhere, so don’t just stick to discipline – look for inspiration elsewhere. Perhaps there’s a cool piece of art on the wall that you can glare at for a few moments.

4. Make A List

Listing down everything you think of that is related to your project will give you more options and different ideas. We often find that listing the entire project also helps with restructuring your workload (Too much workload is often a pre-requisite to creative block.

5. Go Outside

Simply going out and getting some fresh air can give you new clarity and ideas. Not to mention the health benefits of stepping away from your screen and grabbing some fresh air. Clear your airwaves and think about something non-related.

6. Work Somewhere Else

Working from the same place time and time again can drain your creativity. Go to the park or work in a coffee shop for some change in the environment. If your boss doesn’t like it, compare your work to when you are in the office vs when you are outside. The digital era makes remote working highly accessible.

7. Come From A New Angle

Change the question and look at it from a new/different perspective. For example, what would the Queen do? What would Michael Jackson think? Would David Beckham have this colour palette in his living room? Sounds crazy, but you’ll be surprised at how much we are heavily influenced subconsciously by the rich and famous.

8. Take Time Off

Simply stopping and taking a break can re-energise you for when you come back to the project. It doesn’t have to be weeks, (we wish that sort of time was available!) but a few hours is sufficient to start running like a Duracell again. You may enjoy this so much that you’ll stop searching for ‘how to remove creative block’ and start searching for ‘how to acquire creative block!’

9. Think Outside The Box

Look at your past work and look for similarities. You might not have creative block – you might just be bored. Thinking outside the box and trying something different may also help you with other projects. If it does, jot it down before you lose it!

10. Clean Your Workspace

Despite stories of world leaders being messy pups, a tidy work area will keep you organised and focused. It is also, psychologically speaking, a task complete which works wonders for your mental state of feeling ‘progressed’. A progressive mind is an active mind!

11. Break It Down

Sometimes things can be overwhelming. Break down your project into easier to manage tasks instead. If you are tackling a big website design project, start off with just the footer. Working backwards to the norm is also beneficial in itself.

12. Treat Yourself

Go on and treat yourself to something like a donut or your favourite bar of chocolate. It will help you relax and ready to tackle your project. Comfort foods send happy signals to the brain and relax your mind.

13. Work Differently

Do the opposite of your discipline. If you’re a writer, paint. If you’re a guitarist, sing. You’ll get a renewed sense of focus and may even stumble across a new talent altogether. A good game that we often attempt is writing a short story with your weakest hand and asking somebody to read it aloud.

14. Ask Questions

Ask questions about the project. Who is your audience, what is their needs/wants/fears. This can help you generate new ideas. The questions can be to yourself or another. If there is somebody free, perhaps ask them for their layman opinion. Value is always in the eye of the beholder and you may even get some new ideas from their feedback.

15. Sleep On It

If all else fails, just work on it tomorrow. It’s a new day and you’ll get clarity on ideas. There is no shame in pushing back projects if the result of doing so is far superior to if you were to hit the deadline. If you are working with clients, just be honest. Tell them you are struggling but reinforce that you want the best outcomes. In business we often forget one vital thing; everybody is human!

So, there you have it folks. Our top 15 ways on how to remove a creative block. We know all too well how frustrating this can be and we hope that you find solace in our suggestions. Feel free to let us know if you have any of your own methods for us to try!

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