Creative block

Overcoming a creative block

Creativity is at the center of who we are as an advertising agency. And it expands far beyond the creative department here at Vendi. Our research and marketing strategists, media planners, account managers and web developers must all think creatively to continuously meet client goals.  

Even in this industry, creative blocks are inevitable. We are all familiar with the downward spiral of impatience, distraction and frustration.

There are both psychological and environmental factors that influence our ability to maintain the right amount of balance between feeling free and focused. When we can separate ourselves from internal and external distraction, we find the sweet spot.

Psychological influences on creativity

Headspace relates the mind’s activity to a still bowl of water. We can use this analogy to understand and overcome some of the psychological influences that result in creative block.

For example, imagine each thought is a raindrop that creates a ripple on the surface of the bowl. When negativity is frequently and repeatedly plunging into the surface of the water, it is almost impossible to see what’s floating below. Since new ideas are built on previous knowledge and experience, having a clear view to the bottom of the bowl is an essential part of the creative process.

Letting go of the impatience and frustration is a necessary step in becoming aware of our knowledge, experience and inspiration below the surface. At that time, when the surface is calm, we also begin to notice the ripple of new ideas and can run with them toward execution.

Getting into the creative flow

Consider these tips to help alleviate negative psychological influences when experiencing creative block.

  • Take a short walk outside or around the office to reset
  • Engage in a mindfulness exercise to help increase focus on the task at hand
  • Refrain from habitually glancing at the clock
  • Get an adequate amount of rest to prevent fatigue
  • Explore other creative disciplines in your free time to gain unique perspectives and inspiration

Environmental influences on creativity

Creativity is a balance of feeling free and focused. The environment around you plays an important role in the creative process. When your attention is continually compromised, your inability to concentrate on one task at a time may tip the scale.

Creating an ideal environment for creativity

  • Organize your desktop—both your computer and workspace—to eliminate clutter and avoid peripheral distractions
  • Note the time of day in which you feel most creative and, when possible, prioritize items on your to do list accordingly
  • Listen to music without lyrics to encourage flow and focus, or try listening to a different type of music while you work to spark new ideas

The bottom line

When experiencing creative block, reduce negativity and reset. Get organized, get comfortable and eliminate distractions.

Still feeling stuck? Perhaps it’s time to tap into other resources to gain a new perspective. Here at Vendi, we have 16 full-time employees—each, no matter their area of expertise, share a vibrant passion for creative exploration. We believe collaboration is a fundamental part of creative strategy and we’ve integrated it into each phase of creative development.

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