All professionals know the difficulty of being unmotivated and uninspired. When this happens, productivity usually suffers. And even when you have all the talent and skill you need to complete a project, sometimes you may still have to chase inspiration. These 10 productivity tips will help you win the battle against your creative rut.
- Just like looking at things from a different perspective, try to look at your tasks with a different set of eyes. Take a break, (walk, have a snack, take a nap) and come back so that you can see your project objectively. You can also ask for help from a different set of eyes, literally.
- Don’t be afraid to lose inspiration to the point of pushing yourself to exhaustion. Your work won’t get done if you’re sick and in bed.
- Reuse and recycle ideas to reduce wasting them. Even if a project or an idea was rejected, it could still be reworked and improved for another time.
- Try starting with the end in mind. It may seem unusual to begin your creative process with your ideal result first, but working your way backwards can help you make sure you get there.
- Learn your body’s language. Work when you feel most productive. Are you a morning person? Perhaps you prefer to work with the silence of the night? Do you find it easier to work while you sip your favorite drink? You can also find out when your downtime is and take advantage of it.
- Set realistic milestones. Map out what you need to accomplish so you have an overview of what to expect from yourself. Do you need to finish at least 25% of the project by the end of the day? What needs to be done at the end of the week?
- Don’t be afraid to ask not to be disturbed. Instead of silently complaining about that co-worker or your sibling who keeps interrupting you, try being honest and tell them that you are in the zone and that you want to get your tasks done on time.
- Get small tasks done first. In contrast to prioritizing your tasks, to avoid being stuck, find the smallest thing you can do to get started. Keep doing this until you get to the bigger tasks or until you find your groove.
- Have a backup plan. Come up with 3-5 concepts during every brainstorming session, instead of just one to work with. This way, in case the initial idea gets rejected or is discarded, you will still have other ideas set aside.
- Follow your instincts. Sometimes, the only reason you are stuck is because you are fighting your usual thinking process. Don’t mind the rules too much and let your creative juices flow freely.
Whether you’re in a creative rut or you just want to make the most of the limited amount of time and resources you have, keeping these productivity tips in mind will help you stay sane. These tips aren’t foolproof, but what’s sure is that they will help you save time and effort, especially when chasing those deadlines.