On Overcoming a Creative Block

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As the hordes of my readers will have undoubtedly noticed over the past 2 months or so, I haven’t been posting new articles nearly as often. Although I don’t feel I need to post to a schedule, I just write when the mood strikes, I feel I need to write something, anything to get over my creative block.

That’s right, as idiotic as it sounds, I kept telling myself there’s nothing interesting to write about, when in reality there’s so much that it’s actually very intimidating. I came to the conclusion that I must be going through a phase of creative blockage, i.e. I’m taking in too much of other people’s creativity and not expressing my own because of that. With that in mind, I decided to write a piece on the first thing that came to mind, and naturally this has been on my mind a lot.

The Effects of Said Creative Block

  • My writing has suffered

This is the first sign I noticed after not having posted in a while, my writing in every situation has taken a back-seat. More mistakes, omissions and generally less varied were the biggest symptoms. I’d often miss out smaller words by mistake like “an” and “be”, I don’t know if that’s because my subconscious thought of them as irrelevant or that my brain would rather get the point across as fast as possible and not worry about the technical stuff.

Either way, I was never happy when I made a mistake like that. Of course we all do it quite often and that’s quite alright, but I hated to see the rate of my mistakes increase. This was just the tip of the iceberg though.

  • I was becoming content appreciating other’s creativity while not thinking about my own

This is probably what I disliked most as I never want to lose my drive to create, it’s one of, if not the highest form of human action in my opinion.

I would read articles, watch series, play games and listen to debates among other things and take them for granted. I would learn from them but not in such a way to bolster further my own creativeness, I took them at face value some might say. This isn’t something I want to get in the habit of doing, it’s too passive and wasteful for my taste and it. I say take everything you can from all your experiences, don’t sit idly and watch it go by without thought.

  • I was beginning to put other hobbies/activities above writing

I do a lot of different things or else I get very bored and that can turn into apathy. Being apathetic stifles creativity and growth in the direction you want to grow.

I was never in danger of becoming apathetic, however I was pushing writing under my stack of other things I enjoy doing. I’ll weightlift, read articles, watch series, play games and practice piano among other things, but writing was that little niggling feeling at the back of my mind. It wasn’t there because I no longer enjoyed it, quite the opposite. It was there because I felt it had to rest and build up ideas so it could come back with a vengeance, however that seemed not to be the case, what it actually needed was a bigger push. That push is beginning now.

  • If I thought about writing, I’d consider what people would think about what I wrote

And this is probably the one I’m most disappointed in of all. When I took a break from writing, I started thinking about other people’s opinions more, unhealthily so. It’s not that people’s opinions are important to me, neither are they worthless, it’s that I could imagine other people’s opinions and provide my retort in my head, instead of spilling it onto here in article form.

Thinking is one thing, doing is another. Thinking wasn’t and isn’t enough for me, I have to do something, I have to keep adding to my archive of thought at impulse. It serves me in my train of thought and hopefully it even interests the occasional anonymous visitor, then again the end result is the same, I’m very unlikely to hear how my words affected them.

Post-Creative Block

I’m hoping as of me finishing this article that I’m back to picking topics like fruit and writing faster than I can speak. I’m hoping that I just needed to write something, anything, to give my writing side the well-needed push back to normality.

With that in mind, normal programming should begin in 3, 2, 1…

– Jamie


Featured Image: ©Charles Jeffrey Danoff