8 Ways to Break Out of a Creative Rut

8 Ways to Break Out of a Creative Rut

Most painters hit a creative roadblock at some point or another. Shocking, I know. Yes, we’re paid to be creative, but we’re also human. We’ve got fun designing, but doing so over and over without being repetitive has its own challenges. Like many others, we juggle busy family lives using a hectic work program — many of us are also small-business owners, that includes extra responsibilities. At times the stress doesn’t leave much space for creative brainstorming.

Here are eight ideas to assist creative and fresh ideas keep rolling in.

Poss Architecture + Planning and Interior Design

1. Act like a child again. Maybe it is because I spend far too much time rolling around with my 20-month old son, Xavier, but there’s nothing more entertaining to me than looking to some kid’s playroom for inspiration or escape. The vivid colors and frequently wacky details help remind me not to carry it all so badly, to loosen up and have some real fun.

So when you’ve struck a creative rut, think as a child and add some interesting textures, colors, accents or even a chalkboard wall or two to another job. Take it way back to the basics and add a personal art project for a signature piece.


2. Volunteer. If you are not in the mood to play with crayons and chalk, doing some volunteer work might be right up your alley, particularly if it means that you can use your design skills in a different way. There’s no greater feeling than seeing a client with no requirements feel so thankful for a gorgeous space.

Atlanta designers Dayka Robinson and Erika Ward combined their love of style and good deeds with Room Service Atlanta. Each year dozens of designers, designers and sponsors donate money and time to design rooms in different shelters for adolescents. This type of venture can remind you that what you do can really transform lives. Doing work that actually things can truly help open your own creative floodgates.

Hint: When there’s not a similar organization in town, reach out to nonprofits which you admire to offer your services — even if they are not asking! Odds are, you will find a lot of organizations which would relish the notion of getting free services from a design professional.

Fredman Design Group

3. Get away. Step away from the layout boards, your blog and social networking sites, and get outdoors! Smell some fresh air, sit with a pool and have a sip of wine. Guess what? That message from a client turned out to not be so urgent after all, right? Sometimes it’s OK to call back in the afternoon.

Hint: I try not to perform any type of business on Sundays. Once you get started replying on off days, you have erased your boundaries. Do not do it.

4. Check into a hotel for a day. No need to jump on a plane to escape. Occasionally a fast getaway in your city will do the trick. When you are away from home, even for a day, then you are less inclined to fall to your chaotic routine. Instead, turn on the hotel telly and watch marathon episodes of your favorite guilty pleasure show. Keep your cell phone on mute and order a room service.

Suggestion: A number of my very best layout inspirations have come from hotel stays. Hotel designers frequently have larger budgets to work with and can often splurge on items the average homeowner can’t, but there’s no harm in borrowing an idea or two and making it work with a bigger budget.

Great getaways for people who love design

Richard Kramer

5. Have a walk. If a resort’s too expensive, try parking the vehicle and taking a walk to clear your mind, ” says designer Kimberly Ward. Ward says that her frequent walks clear her ideas and help her concentrate on new ways to remain creative.

Tips: Taking a camera along on these walks may also inspire some creativity, also. Photography can stretch a different creative muscle and may even create some personal art for your next job. People-watching along a busy downtown street is also a great way to find a sense of what is trending. When it’s trending in style, home layout is probably next.

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Knightsbridge Vintage 1980s Push-Button Phone from Eco Retro Store

6. Hang up the telephone. Now I don’t mean hang up on customers or possible customers. Instead, just try not to stay glued to your telephone, checking mails, texts and all your social networking sites 24/7. Designer Sherry Hart tries to halt all business chatter by 6 p.m. and on the weekends. “It is only overload,” she says. “I’m a big believer that we’re not curing cancer.”

sherry hart

7. Laugh a lot. Hart attributes a part of her layout victory to a sense of humor. Be ready to laugh at yourself occasionally, and admit that you don’t have to take everything seriously.

Hint: Just the action of laughing can improve your creative juices. Depart from your office for an afternoon and check out the lineup at a local comedy club or let your beloved hysterical film to acquire in certain belly-aching laughs. Trust me, bliss in any form will loosen you up and spur a creativity.

Finished Basement Company

8. Let loose a bit. When all else fails, I have some wine. Occasionally a glass of shiraz or reisling can clean my ideas well enough to style the next job. Please, don’t judge!

Inform us What are the tips for staying creative? What do you do to avoid burning out?

More: 10 Rut Busters to Bring Back Creativity

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