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How to get out of a creative rut

How great would it be if our creative ideas just flowed constantly like water? For most of us, though, we will at some point get stuck in a creative rut; you know that feeling where you’re frustrated, bored, and lacking new and stellar ideas. We all hit a rut on occasion. The trick is not to let it get in your head and drag you down. Instead, keep your confidence up and use these steps to dig your way back out of it.

Learn something new

A creative rut is often caused by feeling bored or stagnant. Learning something new, either by taking a course or watching a Youtube video on a topic unrelated to your work, can help you to dig out of your rut. Take on a challenging project at work to stretch your potential and allow yourself to learn new skills.

Get on your feet

Taking a casual stroll not only encourages blood flow to important parts of the brain, it also helps remove yourself from the work environments in which you have forced associations. Being in new environments, and especially those that take you out of your comfort zone, exposes you to new sites and sensory inputs, all of which spark new connections in your brain and take you out of your rut.

Show up

When you’re in a rut, it can be tempting to park yourself in front of the TV and wait for the muse to come back to you. But the truth is, this will only prolong your rut. Instead, keep showing up. Even if you don’t think you’ll write a single word, it’s important to keep getting yourself in front of your work-in-progress on a regular basis. In fact, make it a habit. It won’t be immediate, but if you show up on a regular schedule to write, your muse will start showing up, too.

Get out of character

Creativity doesn’t come from doing the same things the same exact way. When we do the same things again and again, boredom can set in and get in the way of your creativity. Think about the things you do the same way every day – your commute to work, how you take your coffee, the time you wake up – and change things up. Get up a half hour earlier, try a different coffee blend, drive a new route to the office. Strike up a conversation with someone you’ve never spoken with before. Getting a little uncomfortable, even in small ways, can help you to spark your creativity.

We all hit a creative rut on occasion. The trick is not to let it get in your head and drag you down. Instead, keep your confidence up and use these steps to dig your way back out of it.

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