21 Ways Creative People Keep Themselves Inspired

When you’re a creative person, it’s so easy to get caught up in the mundane details of your every day routine. With a 9-5 job — and life’s general responsibilities — it can seem like there isn’t enough time to work on your latest project. Sometimes the best way to keep the creativity flowing is to try something new. In partnership with HP for their new x360 tablet, which you can take with you and use whenever the inspiration strikes, here are a few ways creative people always bend the rules, and stay inspired.

1. When they’re having trouble with their current project they experiment with other art forms. Perhaps they try their hand at painting or make an attempt at writing short stories. Putting themselves in an area of art they aren’t used to allows them to change perspective and focus on a different creative outlet for a moment.

2. They make it a point to constantly absorb new content. Checking out a new band, buying the latest book from a favorite author, or getting caught up in a new TV show everyone’s been talking about keeps them engaged with pop culture and an influx of new ideas.

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3. They block out time in their schedule to dedicate to their art. They know how important their art is to them and make it a priority in their schedule.

4. They immerse themselves in new environments. Instead of sitting around at home waiting for inspiration to hit they go outside. Walking around the neighborhood or going on a bike ride let’s them stay connected to the world around them.

5. They welcome life’s random experiences. This means saying yes more often than saying no, staying open minded, and encouraging an array of experiences that can later be the inspiration behind something.

6. They go on adventures. Maybe this means heading to a nature preserve for the afternoon with their friends or booking a trip to a foreign city alone.

7. They recognize what makes them the most productive. They take note when certain things or environments give them a boost.

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8. They indulge in their favorite vices. Maybe it’s a glass of wine in the evening or their favorite caffeinated beverage in the morning. They let themselves partake in some of the things that can get the ball rolling, inspiration-wise.

9. They find ways to turn life’s hardest struggles into fuel for their creativity. A bad day, heartbreak, or disappointment can later lead to one of the greatest things they’ve ever created.

10. They meet new people and enjoy spontaneous interactions with strangers.

11. They stay connected to what other artists and their peers are doing. Whether it’s going to an art gallery opening or reading a story a friend published they keep an eye out for what others in their industry are doing.

12. They keep a tablet or sketchbook with them at all times. When inspiration hits they’re able to put it down without losing it.

13. They randomly browse the internet and see what turns up.

14. They’re always learning something new. Whether it’s about a star constellation or a random recipe they found online they’re continually seeking out new information.

15. They find inspiration and beauty in the simple moments of every day life. This means taking in bits from an overheard conversation, noticing the moment when one season has passed and the other has begun, or finding meaning in a song lyric.

16. They go back to what inspired them to become an artist in the first place. Reading a book they read when they were a teenager that sparked their interest in writing or listening to a piece of music that inspired their decision to take guitar lessons can ignite that passion for the art again and make them remember what started their craft.


17. Even if they don’t necessarily feel like being creative they push through their block and work on their project anyway. They understand a lot of the work may be bad but often it gets them to a place creatively they may have otherwise missed if they hadn’t done anything at all.

18. They find ways to recharge. They curl up with a good book and a cup of tea on a rainy day or indulge in an afternoon of naps. Taking a day to do their own thing allows them to recharge and refocus their energy.

19. They re-connect with their past. Sometimes in order to understand the person we are today this means trying to understand the person we were in the past. Calling up an old friend or visiting the neighborhood from childhood can bring up old memories and feelings.

20. They make collages or keep a blog. Having a place where they can look at images or quotes they find meaningful allows them to draw inspiration into their own work.

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21. They let themselves fail. They understand sometimes their creative vision ends up not being executed in the way they thought it would or perhaps their final project wasn’t received well by their audience. Instead of letting this stop them they go back, look at where they could re-work their art, and try again. They stay flexible just like the HP x360 and it’s multiple modes. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Former senior staff writer and producer at Thought Catalog.

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