by Kenneth Rudich
All creative types occasionally find themselves trapped in a rut. On some days ideas flow as if from a bottomless well. On others, they’re as scarce as water in the midst of a drought. As the old saying goes, it comes with the territory.
That’s partly what makes marketing such an intriguing endeavor. It presents a steady stream of challenges that are best overcome when creativity is applied along with good sense. It’s actually paradoxical, because one must exercise discipline while letting the mind travel to a place that is discipline-free. Creativity thrives on such freedom while discipline relies on employing appropriate restraint.
Needless to say, the two make an odd couple. One’s temperamental and the other is feisty. The only time they pose a danger, however, is when they clash just enough to conspire against you, and then the next thing you know is you’re stuck in a rut. At its humbling worst, you can barely spell the word creativity let alone summon anything like it.
That’s when things can start to get uncomfortable.
confronting a creative marketing rut
Everyone’s been there at one time or another.
And if you’ve been around long enough, there’s a good chance you’ve explored different strategies for trying to combat it. Maybe you’ve found one, or even a few, that seem to work well for you.
Me personally, I’ve discovered one and only one. And while there’s never a guarantee it will furnish a fix, it does have a fairly respectable record.
What do I do? Simple…I walk.
Not with purpose, mind you, but aimlessly. I just keep my legs churning, one foot relentlessly lifted in front of the other with no place to go and nothing to be sought.
I believe it’s this absence of purpose that helps make it work. Once my body reaches a free-flowing comfortable rhythm, the mind soon tends to follow. At that point, not a single constraint stands in the way of either. All they need do is just roam – freely, without inhibition, unencumbered by time.
exiting the creative marketing slump
There’s no destination per se, yet I always know when I’ve arrived.
It may not even be a moment of clarity so much as a kernel of thought with a creative thread running through it. You know, something to build on, something to mull. All I need is for the knotty part of the challenge to begin to unravel and then I’m usually good to go after that. The discipline to stick with it carries me on from there.
I understand that my technique may not be the right one for you, so I’ve included a video with 29 more suggestions for stimulating the creative side of your cranium. It was produced by a motion graphics studio named To-Fu. It’s called:
Give it a watch. Then let us know which technique seems best for you.