Coach to Creatives

The Clarity Journal

Tactics, Tools, and Truth for Creative Entrepreneurs

the pep talk: rest yourself out of a creative rut


As creatives, we don’t always know where or how we’ll get our next idea. We want to avoid our work becoming formulaic or stale. We don’t want to be people who simply produce the same thing over and over in different color palettes.

So we look for new ideas. Twyla Tharp calls it “scratching.” We may call it searching for inspiration.

Frustratingly, according to neuroscience, new ideas don’t come when we are working. They come when the mind is resting.

"Neuroscience is finding that when we are idle, in leisure, our brains are most active. The Default Mode Network lights up, which, like airport hubs, connects parts of our brain that don't typically communicate. So a stray thought, a random memory, an image can combine in novel ways to produce novel ideas."

If you’re stuck in a rut and in need of new ideas, the answer is to let your mind rest in leisure. Most of my writing and content ideas flood my brain when I’m working out. Maybe you need to read fiction, go on a walk, or sketch without an agenda.

Let your mind rest in leisure this week. You might just get your next big idea.

All my best,