We all have those days where our creativity walks out on us. All we are left with is the frustration of not knowing what the hell we're doing.
Here are 5 ways to get inspired when your tank is empty.
1. Look to the Past
The biggest resource we have is what came before us. It doesn't matter what field you're in, whether you're a writer, musician, painter, or even a student. You must look at who came before you. Drawing inspiration from the greats in your field will only make you more knowledgeable.
How: Look at your favorite writers, musical artists, painters or scholars. Do some research on what made their work brilliant and use that to spark your creative energy.
2. Start working on something you know is terrible.
I can't tell you how many times I've just started writing, and I know it's absolutely terrible work, but later on in the process if I work for long enough the good stuff will start to come out. Part of getting past the lack of inspiration is just working through it. When your mind is all blocked up, it's easy to get frustrated and want to quit, but if you keep going something amazing may come of it.
How: Work on your task for 30 minutes straight, if you don't discover something by then, take a 10 minute break and return to it. Don't push too hard, but don't let yourself off the hook too easily.
3. Go outside.
There are so many things to engage your brain outside. It's a really good practice to get out of the office, your room, wherever for at least 10 minutes during the workday to get some fresh air, and some fresh ideas.
My memory has been jogged and my mind inspired by just catching someone doing something funny in the park, or seeing a bird pick up something odd. It just depends on how your brain works.
How: Go outside with a pen and pencil, and write down qualitative statements about what you see, this can work for writing essays, stories, making music or art...whatever. Just observe.
4. Get your mind off of your task.
Sometimes you just need to walk away. Part of getting inspired is not being too hard on yourself. Going outside, or taking a break can work sometimes. When you're totally overwhelmed it's just better to get your mind off of your task. Inspiration comes from a clear mind most of the time, so just let the frustration go and do something else.
How to: listen to music, read a magazine, do something mindless and then once you're feeling calmer, get back to your task.
5. Get literal and "search" for it.
The internet is a wild and wonderful place where people can share literally anything they want. There is a lot of inspiration to be found there. Look at Vingle, and websites like it that host a variety of content and types of people. Go into the Inspirational Stories community to find writing inspiration, check out the Music community for new things about bands and artists. There are literally 3,000 choices on Vingle alone for you to find inspiration. So go out there and get it!
How to: On Vingle, put anything you want in the search bar and find it! You can also use #inspiration on twitter and tumblr too.
Because you never know when inspiration will strike!