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When Creative Juices Run Dry  02.10.2007

People are coming to appreciate more and more these days that some sort of creative outlet in our work or home life is critical in order to keep us sane in this overschedulised, over-pressurised world. Without a creative outlet, many people find the 9-to-5 life soulless and unfruitful. That’s why many people are resorting to more creative jobs or taking a break from the big career for a more low-key job that gives them space to be creative. On the other hand, some people’s career hinges heavily on having a substantial amount of creative flair.

But with deadlines looming, what happens when your creative juices run dry? The big question is: what can you do to get your creative inspiration back when your mind is a blank and you are under pressure?


Practice does make perfect. Just as exercise strengthens your muscles, thinking creatively regularly strengthens that part of your brain. The more practiced you are at thinking creatively, the quicker and the more creative you will be. Your mind will switch into creative mode quicker and the creative juices will flow quicker when you are more practiced in using that side of your brain.

Half and Half

Just like with studying or working in an office, try and designate one particular area in your house/room to creative thinking. Decorate it however you see fit for inspiring you creatively, keeping in mind that sometimes you need ideas around you to help you, but sometimes these things merely act as a distraction. If you have a creative space to work in, you will find that your brain reverts into that creative mode quicker, just as it reverts into work mode when you enter your work office. If time is as much of the essence as creativity, then having a creative space will save you precious time and get you in the mood quicker.




If you are not surrounding yourself with creative ideas and influences then you are sitting in a creative and inspirational desert. How do you expect ideas to jump out at you if your mind isn’t even in an accepting and nurturing headspace? If you are a musician, actor, artist and the like, you want to be aware of what’s new, what’s around – make sure to go see what people are doing and performing. It not only gives you ideas but it most definitely gets you inspired and driven towards doing more of it. Use the Force

I don’t know if it is a mix of envy and likeminded creative fire that inspires artists when seeing others’ work. Whatever it may be, using it as a driving force is also great.


It is better to be relaxed in order for your subconscious mind to develop ideas. Like the Eureka Moment with Archimedes, so many people have breakthrough ideas at the most unlikely times, such as in the shower/bath, on the toilet etc. By relaxing, you are allowing your subconscious mind to sift through all the influences you are exposed to, and try and make meaning from them.


If you are hoping to break ground in a tough creative industry, it helps to have a mentor or someone who has already succeeded in your field that you can model your success from. By living vicariously through your mentor, you can see how they have worked, understand the sacrifices they have made, note their work tactics, the people they work with etc. In this way, you can speed up your own success by learning from their failures while avoiding the hardships too.

As creativity relies heavily on personal interests, skill and interpretation, it can be a very difficult area to compete in. However, with the above tips, you will be more productive and have a system for getting better results quicker.

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