Honestly, a lot of my issues (and there are many) aren’t so much of my lack of creative energy, but rather my lack of focus. And a lack of motivation to actually be productive and finish something instead of just jumping to the next shiny idea I find myself enamored by.
But I do sometimes find myself well and truly drained. This usually happens right after I finish a very large creative project. And, uh, since that happens rarely (both the being drained and the *cough* finishing something), I’m pretty much at a loss as how to fix it. So honestly, I’m reading this series of posts right along there with all of you.
That being said, I have found two ways that work pretty well for me. Your mileage may vary, etc etc, but if you’re finding that you’re scraping at the bottom of the barrel for any sort of creative juice, try this out.
Seriously. Go to bed. Take a nap. Take a long nap. I’m a pretty big believer in the power of sleep to heal all things, whether it be colds or migraines or cramps or whatever. And it even works when I’m feeling creatively drained. I mean, after all, creative works take energy, and sleep is pretty good at restoring lost energy.
Plus, something ridiculous like a third of Americans are sleep deprived, so you should really just be sleeping more in general anyway. Take more naps. Got it? Good.
- Socialize With Your (Creative) Friends
Not gonna lie, this one probably won’t work for everyone. A lot of my creative friends are introverted types that can hermit themselves away to recharge. But for me, what with my being extremely extroverted, being alone actually drains me. And being alone for an extended amount of time is practically an invitation to let depression move in. And then nothing is gonna get done. At all. For a very long time.
And yet, it took me a laughably long time to figure out that if being alone costs me valuable creative energy, then maybe the inverse is also true. Hanging out with friends* re-energizes me, reinvigorates me.
*Minor caveat here: this only really works with friends, in my experience. Random people, and even family, can exhaust me. Less because of some kind of introvert/extrovert ratio, and more because, well…they’re exhausting.
I don’t even have to already be feeling drained of creative energy to get this to work. Visiting with friends, especially creative friends, can recharge me to the point where I feel like I’m going to burst. I’m usually my most productive after an afternoon of socializing with my fellow writer types—I get home and I’m filled with not just new ideas, but energy in which to get them done.
(Of course, having the old creative well overflowing tends to lead to lack of focus and bouncing from one shiny new idea to another, but that’s a problem, and a post, for another day.)
So what about you? What are some of the ways you refill your creative energy? Leave them in the comments below!