Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Why We Shouldn't Force Creativity

Bloggers always want to continue creating content, but what happens when you hit a creative road block? There's a constant need to be creative. For example, when I sat down to write a post for this week, I thought, what can I do that is creative? I was considering doing an outfit post of a roundup of totally swoon-worthy swimwear to get ready for spring break, but I ended up deciding not to do either, because neither of them were truly creative and original. I even considered not doing a post today at all, because I couldn't think of something worth posting about, something creative and worthy of sharing.
As of the beginning of this year, (and of course before that, but I've really been focusing on it recently), I've been striving to create original content on my blog. Do we really need another blog post of the same DIY that has been seen plastered all over the internet? We need new things out there, that are creative and unique. But the thing about that is that as content creators, we feel the pressure to come up with innovative ideas like nothing before. And when you can't come up with something, it's disappointing. However, as much as we try, we can't force creativity.

Why We Shouldn't Force Creativity

Creativity is sacred. While it's totally tempting to just work on something that is a little less creative than you would like, but still enjoyable, I am a strong believer that if I can't come up with a high quality blog post, then I shouldn't post anything at all. This is where creativity comes into play. As I previously mentioned, I've recently been trying to foster my creativity and produce fresh and original content on my blog. A great filter for creating high quality content is asking yourself, "Is this something that is original and unique to me and my blog?" It's so easy to fall into the trap of doing whatever the trend is for blogging and put up the posts that people want to read, but creativity is what makes a blog succeed. 

I don't want to read the same post that I've read five times in one day, I want something different, which brings me to my next point. I've seen blog resources that include blog post ideas in case you're feeling a bad case of writer's block. I have to admit, that sounds like a really great idea, it's efficient and it's nice to have when you get stumped, but I believe that the best ideas don't come from a book, but from your experiences and your life. In my personal opinion, I think that in a way, using post ideas from a book is a way of forcing creativity. I get it, you want to get a post up and are also suffering from writer's block and also put your own personal spin on the given idea, but it's not necessarily something that is 100% yours. It's your take on someone else's idea. This is why creativity is so important. By fostering your creativity, your content is one of a kind. 

However, fostering your creativity is not always the easiest. Creativity is all about being imaginative and original, but when you're so focused on creating, it's difficult to be imaginative. For example, if I'm sitting at my desk, trying to think of a spectacular post idea for next week, it's highly likely that I won't be able to come up with anything. Nothing special comes out of forcing creativity. Unlike schoolwork, where you need to put all brainpower into and really get focused on, if you focus too much on coming up with a creative idea, chances are, the ideas you come up with won't be very "out of the box." Simply pushing yourself to be creative when you're just not in that mindset puts you in a box and limits what you can do. It's a little backwards, because creativity is something that's spontaneous. Whenever I am actively making an effort to come up with a good idea, it never comes. It generally pops out of nowhere, when I'm least expecting it.


In my experience, I have never gotten a good idea from brainstorming. I get sitting down and just thinking over a topic might work for some people, but I have never gotten a single good idea that way. In a way, it's boring. Maybe you might come up with one or two potential ideas, but the ones that are special, the ones that make a difference, don't come from sitting in a chair and thinking.  In a way, by forcing creativity, you're killing it. Your focus on creativity is consuming your mind from thinking about anything else. The good ideas come from living. They come from experiences. They come from getting up and doing things, not thinking about doing them. 

It's when you let your imagination run wild that your mind can relax and wander. There's that quote that says, "Not all that wander are lost." The people that wander, aren't looking for anything in particular, they're just exploring. If you stay confined in your little bubble of brainstorming, you can't explore. You need to wander, let your mind go wild with curiosity, because you're not lost. Wandering means that you're free. There's no specific aim that's limiting you, anywhere's fair game. And that's how creativity is at it's best, when there are no limits. By not forcing creativity, in a strange way, you're actually fostering creativity. You're getting your mind to go somewhere else, full of endless possibilities. 

Sometimes the strangest things can prompt an idea. For example, my recent blog post, What It's Like Telling People About Your Blog, I came up with it while discussing the topic of coming out. The idea that coming out is like telling people your biggest secret and I related it to my blog. I thought about the nerves that came along with even telling my closest friends about my blog, because I was so overly nervous about what they would think about it. And this idea sparked one after another. Just talking about coming out to people, even though it was not super closely related to blogging, sparked a chain reaction of ideas. It's the times that you least expect it that the best ideas come to life. 

Instead of pondering over what you can do to become creative, get up out of your chair. Get outside, go crazy, and live your life. Maybe you will come up with a million dollar idea, maybe you'll come up with a small one like this blog post, but by being free and wandering, you're opening up the doors for creativity to come through. So today, let's stop forcing creativity. And let's start living. 

2 comments:

  1. creativity & building better blogging content is a tricky thing for sure..however, wow! you're a super talented artist! Love your bike painting in the previous post!
    Cheers,
    Katelyn
    theyellowspectacles.com

    ReplyDelete