7 Tips To Shock You Out Of Your Creative Rut

I guess we all get stuck in a creative rut from time to time – artists whose variations on a theme have begun to lack, well… variety; musicians whose new songs sound a little too much like their old ones, or whose musical phrasings have become so well worn that they’re almost worn out; or writers who have settled for the easy.

And if what you produce fails to satisfy yourself then the chances are it will fail to satisfy your audience too. It’s time to shock yourself out of your creative rut.

How? Here are 7 ideas to set your imagination free and help you fly out of even the deepest of creative ruts. Choose one or a few and see what happens.

1. Change your inputs to change your outputs

Your creative rut may well stem from living your life from habit. You know what you like, what interests you and what entertains you, and you stick to it. Your inputs have grown stale. What can you do? Change your inputs.

TV, music, books, newspapers, films, theater, people, hobbies – shake them up to revitalize your creative ideas.

2. Test your assumptions

Assumptions are sneaky. They creep up on you and take hold of your mind so that more and more options and possibilities seem like impossibilities. It’s frightening how much we can rule out because of untested assumptions. So test them.

Exercise: use the following headings to make lists of your assumptions. Here are the headings:

  • I could never…
  • I can’t…
  • I should…
  • I need…
  • It’s not my style to…

Then for each assumption you list ask yourself questions like: Why not? Who says? Am I sure about that?

3. Make subtle changes

Consider adding new styles or techniques to your repertoire. Or experiment with modified themes and changes of emphasis.

4. Think about the levels of change that are possible – and impossible

It may be that the subtle changes of style, technique or theme above are enough to get you out of your creative rut. But if not, spend some time brainstorming all your options, from the saddest to the maddest. Use a friend to help you come up with ideas, including ways to reinvent yourself. Have fun and rule nothing out.

5. Do what scares you

A bit of bravery needed here. What scares or challenges you – either in your own artistic process or in life in general? Make a list and use it as a challenge to your creativity.

6. Change your creative process

Experiment with changes to tools, methods, locations.

7. Mess around with bad ideas

You can have some great fun with this one. Disgusting combinations, extreme cheesiness, blatant pastiche – anything that would make you wince at the thought of you creating it. Make yourself groan and giggle at the sheer awfulness. Collaborate to find even worse ideas and then try some of them out. Feel free to burn the results.

Whatever you choose, give yourself the time and freedom to experiment without worrying about the outcomes. Remember that at this stage it’s not new work you are trying to produce – it’s new inspirations.

Be ready to notice the interesting things when they happen – because what happens could be very interesting indeed.

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Creative Romantic Ideas Live in You

Why is it people believe they either don’t have the time or won’t take the initiative to be romantic? Is it because people don’t believe they are creative enough to be romantic? Have I got news for you! Everyone is creative, and creative romantic ideas live inside you, just itching to get out. By definition, being creative is having the ability to create. The word ‘create’ offers a much broader definition of being able to come up with something original or well thought out. Regardless, you can come up with many creative romantic ideas if you will just let those ideas out.

There is nothing wrong with giving traditional romantic gifts such as flowers and candy, but are they by definition creative? Sometimes you need something that goes one step further with a creative romantic gift. If your spouse enjoys flowers, don’t simply settle for roses. Present her with something completely original such as a flower that matches her eyes or is her favorite color. Maybe it can be a flower where petals can be counted and you could play the childhood game of ‘they love me, they love me not’. Just make sure you don’t allow the possibility of her arriving at the ‘they love me not’. To avoid that scenario, count the petals before you present the flower to your partner and start out the count to insure the right outcome!

Arts and crafts are another “outside the box” idea that can come in handy as a creative romantic idea. Instead of just promising you will love him or her forever, why not show them. Take a piece of paper, ribbon or any other material you might choose and write “I love you” on both sides from end to end. Twist the paper 180 degrees and connect both ends of the paper until you have made what looks like the figure eight. Tape or glue the ends together. You can present your love with a symbol that shows them your love for them is an infinite love.

Creative romantic ideas come in many different forms. Be inventive by creating an atmosphere of mystery. Plan the ultimate romantic evening by shutting down the electricity and pretending there is a power outage (it’s up to you whether or not you tell him or her!). With the power off, you won’t have any distractions such as a TV or a computer and you won’t have any heat either, so it will be up to both of you to keep each other entertained and warm!

From time to time romance is on your mind but creativity doesn’t have to come in the form of gifts every single time. Not every creative romantic idea has to have a price tag attached. A simple gesture like getting up and dancing with your spouse when a special song comes on the radio is quite creative and incredibly romantic! Whenever that ‘romantic mood’ comes over you, just allow your creative juices to flow!

How to Achieve Creative Dating Success

So many people young and old are finding it a big challenge to find their ideal partner these days. Some are also turning to the online dating sites to find their new date, which can be a bit ‘hit and miss’ at the best of times.

It’s often the case that you’re asked to describe what you’re looking for in your ideal partner in great detail, for example, what color should their eyes be? How tall should they be? What age should they be?

It is a little bit like going to the supermarketing and choosing a product from the shelf. But, the thing is, most ‘off-the-shelf’ parterships just don’t work out and the problem is not just what the person looks like, or their age or the color of their hair – it’s their personality that will be the crucial factor in the ‘make or break’ stakes.

When you first start dating it’s important to be aware of some of the personality differences that may cause a few clashes on your first few dates together.

Here are a couple of really important facts you should consider about yourself when you first start going out with a new date:

1. Do you consider yourself to be reserved or outgoing?

Just understanding this one aspect of your personality can help you achieve dating success, You see most reserved people are not looking to be constantly entertained or go to a whirlwind of parties or social occasions as they are much happier in a more cosy, intimate setting for their dates.

On the other hand, if you’re more outgoing by nature you may be expecting to be entertained a lot of the time and surrounded by people at parties. Quiet cosy ‘nights-in’ and spending time just the two of you together may not be exactly what you had in mind for you ideal dates.

2. How do you live your life in general are you a planner or are you more carefree?

Your attitude to life in general can also become a sticking point if you aren’t aware of how you plan your dates. For example. if you’re a planner you’ll have everything ready well in advance before going on your dates. The table at the restaurant will be booked (days ahead) you’ll know exactly what you’re going to wear on the date (days ahead) and you’ll be so disappointed if your new date turns up late or doesn’t even mention what you’re wearing.

Whereas, if you have a more carefree attitute to life, you may not even think of prebooking a restaurant in advance then you wonder why your date is annoyed when all the tables are reserved and you can’t be served without standing in a long line. Or worse still, you forgot to collect your best suit from the cleaners and turn up too casual for the occasion.

A little bit of ‘give and take’ is what’s needed when you’re searching for your perfect date and spending quality time together with some creative dating ideas can really make a difference when you are both getting to know each other and building a strong relationship.

Keeping Guests Entertained On Your Wedding Day

On mentioning the words ‘wedding entertainment’, the unfortunate reality which pops into most people’s heads, is that of an image of a cheesy DJ, acting as though he’s just stepped out of a scene from Love Actually. Along with pictures of the even more terrible dancing his music receives in response, it’s not what everyone has in mind for their special day.

However, having some sort of entertainment at your wedding doesn’t have to be like another clich├ęd scene in a film; there are a lot of very unusual ways to keep you and your guests thoroughly entertained all day. And they’re guaranteed to leave a lasting impression.

Why not hire a magician for some table entertainment as your guests are having dinner? This certainly doesn’t mean that your wedding guests will feel as though they’ve been invited to a kid’s birthday party; in fact there are some incredibly impressive and sophisticated magicians available for events and they will be well adapted to charming even the most sceptical family member. From card tricks to optical illusions, there are magicians that delve into all aspects of trickery, so you can make sure that you will be getting very varied entertainment.

For weddings at which guests will also be able to enjoy spending time outdoors, hiring some giant games is a definite way of keeping people of all ages occupied. This could be the perfect answer for those couples including children at their wedding. The range of outdoor activities available is huge and depending on the style of your wedding, you might want to opt for the more traditional lawn games, such as croquet and bowls, or go for those all time favourites with a giant jenga or snakes and ladders set.

Similarly if you want to inject some fun into your big day, then inflatable games or bouncy castles will be a hit, and not just with the younger guests at the wedding. Everybody loves these activities and you’ll be surprised how many people will want to get involved, happily ditching their finest outfits to don that giant sumo suit!

Unusual wedding entertainment can be the ideal option for a lot of couples, particularly those looking to have a themed wedding. Entertainment can be tailored to suit any wedding style, but something particularly apt if your theme is fun is sourcing some fairground stalls or games for the occasion. Guests will feel as though they’ve just stepped into a theme park and there are a number of companies available that offer unique, quirky stands. Alternatively, hiring a fun casino is also a great option for those who perhaps aren’t too keen on the after-dinner dancing. Even if guests have never played any casino games before, the experienced croupiers that oversee the games will usually be happy to explain, so your whole wedding party could try their hand at gambling!

In a similar way, if you know that getting your guests up on the dance floor could take some persuasion, then couples might like to consider hiring an instructor to give a mini dance lesson to their friends. This will keep guests entertained while the bride and groom are having their photo taken, or it could be used as an ice breaker to get people into the party mood. Whether it’s family line dancing, a bit of tango or some sexy salsa skills you’d like to have a taste of, there is scope to get creative.

For wedding entertainment designed to impress, and something different from the traditional firework display, why not consider using circus acts or fire shows? These are designed to be wonderful spectacles and the amazing pyrotechnics involved are one way to ensure that your guests will be impressed.

Of course, even with all these weird and wonderful alternatives, no one can deny that having music at your wedding creates the perfect atmosphere. Instead of the obvious choice of a DJ, it is definitely worth thinking about integrating some live music into the celebrations, as this can set exactly the tone you require on your special day. To add a touch of sophistication and class, couples might enjoy having a jazz band or classical quartet or a musician to play during the meal or reception. It is worth investing some time into finding the right musical act because the variety is immense.

So, whatever you’re thinking about wowing your guests with on the big day, ensure that everyone is thoroughly entertained by trying something fun, quirky and different, could be the just the twist you need.

Resourcefulness and Good Fun Family Entertainment

Everyone wants and needs to have some fun, relax and just get away from it all for awhile. In tight times, resourcefulness is important in every area of our lives, including entertainment and recreation. Just as in all other areas of the household budget, you have to change your thinking a bit to figure out some resourceful ways to beat the high cost of traditional modern family entertainment.

So when you want to take the family out for a fun time and keep within your budget, here are some ideas for fun family entertainment that you may want to consider.

Even though movies are available to rent or buy so that they can be enjoyed at home, many people find that the excitement of a movie is just not the same unless they are sitting in front of the big screen at the movie theater. If this resonates with you, how about attending a matinee or a second run theater film where the prices are cheaper. You will also usually find that the snack bar prices are much more reasonably priced in the second run theaters than they are in the first run movie theaters.

If you and your family enjoy sporting events, instead of buying tickets for the major leagues, change your thinking, and start taking in the local sports games? High school games can be really exciting for everyone in the family. In addition to being resourceful and saving a ton of money, you will also benefit from the social aspects of getting to know other people in your community, and you’ll just feel good as you support the local kids. If you have any minor leagues or colleges in your area, you’re sure to find a lot of excitement and fun family entertainment at those events as well.

Everyone enjoys pizza, so take the gang out for a big piping hot pizza. Enjoy the delicious pizza, great conversation, the laughter, and the music, and if your budget allows it, take in some arcade games afterward.

If you are lucky enough to still have a bowling alley in your town, be sure to consider a night of bowling occasionally. It is truly unfortunate that many communities have torn down their bowling alleys, often being replaced by workout gyms. If only the bowling alleys remained one could work out as well as enjoy good fun family entertainment. Besides the exercise that you get from bowling, you get a chance to socialize with the people in the lane next to you.

Swimming together is an old family fun tradition that does not cost very much. In days past, people used to go down to the old swimming hole. That’s a little different in most communities today, but there are often pools running all year long. Be sure to practice safety and teach everyone in your family how to swim. That is really important to do anyway, so a family swim time is a great time to practice those skills. Take care to follow all the safety rules posted wherever you swim, and do not swim unless there is a lifeguard present and on duty. Again, the exercise is a tremendous side benefit as well as being resourceful.

How about good old walking? There are walking clubs you can join if you want to be with a group, which is not a bad idea these days for safety sake. These clubs have regularly scheduled walks, and you and your kids can even earn rewards for participating in this activity. The cost savings plus the social benefits, the exercise, and spending time outdoors enjoying nature and the scenery is the height of resourcefulness.

If your family is more adventurous find out about hiking trails in your area. Go on a day biking trip. Discover local places to go camping.

There are still many communities and malls who put on free concerts, so pack up the kids and enjoy some great robust music with the local talent. Sometimes these local concert venues are able to attract more well known entertainers as well. There may be an admission price for the entertainers of renown, but it is certain to cost a lot less than a major concert at a coliseum or an arena would. You may be able to bring your own snack foods as well. Be sure to inquire beforehand if you need to bring your own seating because if you found you had to remain standing, it may dampen your enjoyment of the event.

Almost every community and school has local fairs, festivals, and plays so get to know what is going on in your community, and go out and have some fun as you are being resourceful and support your local community as well.

Also, many libraries have special events and presentations that you can participate in so check out what’s going on at your local library.

Let your imagination be your inspiration and your guide for fun family entertainment. Resourcefulness does not have to mean that you must deprive you and your family of entertainment and fun. It just means that you must become more creative and change your thinking so that you and your family explore new alternatives for fun family activities.