We’ve all been there. Some days, your creative juices seem to just flow effortlessly. Other days, getting a creative idea to spring into your mind is like pulling teeth.
Don’t worry, you haven’t run the creativity well dry. In fact, the great American Poet Maya Angelou famously said,
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
Well, that’s good news at least.
Event and meeting planners rely on their creativity. In fact, it’s an essential part of the job description. Not only do planners need to come up with creative ideas to make events one-of-a-kind and memorable, event planners also apply their creativity daily through creative problem-solving. You can always count on an event planner to use their creative brain to get themselves out of a sticky situation.
As a result, a creative block can be a blow to an event planner’s productivity and ability to do their job. While creative blocks are at times unavoidable, they can be overcome. We’ve put together some sound strategies for overcoming your next creative block when it strikes.
1. It Starts with Acceptance
Have you ever been lying in bed trying to fall asleep, but your brain is going a million miles per minute? (Of course you have, you’re an event planner) Before you know it, you’re stressing out that you can’t sleep and getting yourself all worked up. After that happens, it’s nearly impossible to fall asleep.
It’s the exact same with creativity. If you feel that you have a creative block coming on, don’t stress out or beat yourself up over it. This will only make it worse. Instead, calmly acknowledge and accept the situation, take a deep breath, and formulate a game plan to get your creativity flowing again.
2. Clear Your Mind
The next step is to clear your mind of all the clutter, to-do lists and stress that may be taking away from your ability to think creatively. Simply going for a quick walk around the block, putting in headphones and closing your eyes while listening to your favorite tunes, or doing anything that relaxes you like a yoga class can help “reset” your brain and focus your creativity again.
3. Declutter Your Work Space (Or Not)
Some people thrive in a cluttered workspace and some don’t. If you work your best in an organized environment, it’s time to cleanse your surroundings. Clear off your desk and move that huge stack of papers out of sight. Give yourself the ideal environment for creativity to thrive.
If you do your best work surrounded by organized chaos (okay, maybe just chaos), organize your space for optimal performance. Get your sticky notes ready, spread out your papers, and get ready to let the creative ideas fly!
4. Look for Inspiration
Sometimes, our brains need a little kickstart to activate creative thinking. There’s no shame in browsing the web or your favorite magazine for some inspiration. You can even try reading an article about a unique culture and their practices or scrolling through your favorite Pinterest board.
Need some event design inspiration? Take a walk through a unique clothing store or home boutique to get your brain thinking about patterns, color, and design. You never know where inspiration will strike.
5. Step Away
If you’re still not feeling like you’ve gotten your creative mojo back after following steps one to four, there’s still hope. If you have the ability within the framework of your job, step away from the project. Do other things first and wait for your brain to “wake up”. Have a notepad on standby; once your creativity comes back, the ideas will start popping into your head.
6. Try Brain-Stimulating Activities
We warm up our bodies before exercise, so why don’t we warm up our brains before creative thinking? The brain has two sides, and the right hemisphere of the brain is primarily responsible for creative and artistic thinking. The following strategies have been known to stimulate the creative brain:
- Sign your name in every way you can think of. Forwards, backward, with different cursive, and even with your non-dominant hand.
- Use your left hand to do new activities. The right side of your brain is responsible for your left hand. If you’re right-handed, using your left hand can help get the right side of your brain fired up.
- Make each brain hemisphere communicate. Hold a pen in your right hand and write a phrase in a conversation, then use your left hand to write a response.
There you have it! A creative block can always be overcome. The key is to accept it and to avoid getting frustrated. Once you accept that it’s just a part of the overall creative process, you’ll be able to handle your next creative block without stress.