Overcoming Creative Blocks

by : LeonardoTrait

I have two more techniques I think are very useful in fighting creative blocks.

**Technique 4: Spend Some Time Talking with Your Muse**

I know this sounds a little, well, a bit, um, kind of, er, okay. It seems kooky as heck.

I'm not suggesting you have to get all mystical, unless you are mystical.

But try this exercise.

1. Sit down somewhere comfortable, away from your work area.

2. Ask yourself, "What does my muse want me to do, that I'm not doing?"

3. Listen to that answer. I know in my case, most recently, I was writing solely for money, and my muse (subconscious, whatever) was withholding inspiration until I realized I needed to write for me.

4. Ask yourself, "What does my muse want me to stop doing, that I am doing?"

5. My answer here was that I needed to stop working myself half to death, and focus on doing better work, not more.

This whole "talking to your muse" thing may seem a little odd, but you do have a subconscious, and it does know things you need to know, and it will release that information if you let it.

Just try it. If it doesn't work for you, you don't have to keep doing it.


Technique 5: Go Back to Work

Okay, now it's time to just forget about the block, and go back to work.

That may sound very mercenary, telling you to get back to work when you're blocked and can't work.

But the fact is, I think by now you can work. I think the main reason we feel blocked is that we focus on the block.

I believe that if you go back to work, you'll be able to work.

I once read a great technique, and I think it was in Jerrold Mundis's book on writer's block.

My variation of it is this. Find your favorite poem, or novel, or painting, or whatever it is you do.

Go to your work area and spend 20 minutes meticulously copying that piece of art. Do it by hand. If you write, use a pencil and a legal pad, or crayons on newsprint. Get your hand involved in working again.

Now, spend twenty minutes working on a completely new project of your own. Do not go back and try to "finish" what you were working on before the block. Start something new. It doesn't matter if it's something you can finish in 20 minutes, or if you're just starting.

But only work 20 minutes. And then don't work again that day.

The next day, copy for ten minutes and work for 30.

The following day, don't copy. Work for 45 minutes. No more, no less.

By now you should either have broken your block, or be totally convinced it will never break. If these techniques didn't work for you, try them again, or try Mundis's book, or try another book, or just keep trying to work. But don't give in to the block. You are a creative person and you can work.

You will work again very soon.

[End of Part 3, End of Article]