Have you ever hit a writer’s or creative block? Where you don’t know what to write, where to take photos, or what to create next?
I have. I’ve been creating content for Emma’s Edition since 2014 and I’ve definitely have days, weeks, and sometimes months where I wasn’t sure where to find inspiration and what content to create.
Recently, I received this question on Instagram stories:
“How do you find inspiration when you’re in a rut?” submitted by @katie_forsha.
Here is my process on finding inspiration when I’m in a rut:
First, I don’t force myself to be creative.
If I’m feeling blocked or unfocused, I don’t try harder to push being creative. I used to try to push myself to sit there and be creative and I ended up getting more frustrated and more blocked. I’ve learned that if I’m feeling this way, I need to take the time to shift my energy and perspective.
Instead of forcing myself to be creative, I do things that help boost my mood or at least get me to a neutral state. Personally, I like to walk my dog Boone, go on a run, or grab a snack. If I’m feeling really cranky, then I’ll even take a short nap to reset.
2. I travel to a new place.
One way I find inspiration is through exploration and
travel. One way I explore new places is finding new (Instagrammable) places to
shoot at. I get really excited researching new photo shoot locations.
Traveling to new cities and finding new photo shoot
locations also inspires me to figure out what outfits to style and what new
poses to try. I’ve found that some of my favorite photos and blog posts have
come from traveling:
Most Instagrammable Places: Melrose Avenue Edition
Most Instagrammable Places in Scottsdale
Francisco’s Most Instagrammable Places
3. I explore my own city.
If I don’t have a trip planned to a new city or state, I love to explore my own city of Seattle. I love showing others what cute restaurants, coffee shops, dessert spots, and more around Seattle. I also get reenergized when I find a hidden spot in my own city. For example, I grew up near Tacoma. So when I was creating Tacoma’s Most Instagrammable Places and found this book wall on Antique Row, I was ecstatic!
4. I look at Pinterest or Instagram.
Other ways I also look for inspiration are by going through hashtags on Instagram or scrolling through Pinterest. I’m usually looking for new locations or posing ideas – so both Instagram and Pinterest work well for these goals.
5. I look back at what’s worked well on Emma’s Edition before.
If I’m truly unsure of what direction to go and I feel stuck in a rut, I take a step back and look at what’s performed well on Emma’s Edition. I usually create content with my audience in mind. Taking a look at Google Analytics and Instagram Analytics always reminds me what my audience responds to well.
I usually will look back at my top performing posts of the
past 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year to see if I can recreate those types of posts.
6. I talk to my friends and family.
My sister and my blogger friends always help me flush
through new ideas. While my sister may not be a blogger, she does have a good
pulse about what type of content people like to consume. She always gives me
feedback about what type of content my audience might like to see next!
How do you find inspiration when you’re in a rut?
For more Instagram story questions and answers, you can also check out:
6 SEO Tips for Beginning Bloggers
How do I stay organized with my blog, podcast, and life?
How much time do I spend on my blog and Instagram?
Thank you for reading!
Photos: Holly Phan