Inspiration comes in waves. Some weeks I feel like I’m on a roll, ideas for content just keep coming, I feel inspired to write, I feel like people care what I have to say and I’m on a blog high. Other weeks I can’t motivate myself for the life of me.. words just won’t come out, I don’t even feel like I can pump out a good picture on Instagram, and I feel like nothing I have to say would inspire anyone to read it. It’s during these times that I start to question myself, my own worth, and why I even started blogging to begin with.
An important thing for us to be able to do is recognize when we are in these slumps, and take appropriate action. If you try to continue on as if nothing is different, you’ll find you dig yourself deeper and deeper into the black uninspired hole you’ve found yourself in. The more uninspired you feel, the more you hate on your own work, and the more you hate on your own work and abilities the more you feel like you can’t put out any content worth putting out.
Since I got back from my Christmas vacation I would be lying if I said I wasn’t feeling a little bit like this. I feel guilty and a little ashamed that all of a sudden I feel so uninspired. A new year is supposed to be the most inspirational time of the year… it’s a blank slate full of opportunity. I guess after leaving Kelowna which is such a beautiful place, I have this big fear that my content is going to go downhill. I’m afraid my photos just won’t be as pretty and I guess you could say I feel uninspired by Toronto and want to be back in all the beauty that is Kelowna, where I feel I can make endless pretty photos and be proud of what I’m creating.
In the spirit of self-healing (after all, these posts always stem from me trying to deal with my own personal issues) I’ve compiled a list of things you can do when you’re feeling unmotived & uninspired! – while these are geared towards bloggers, I hope they come in handy too for anyone regardless of the field you’re in!
What to do when you’re feeling unmotivated & uninspired
- Take a break. This one is really hard to do if you’re an anal “Type A” like me who feels like any break from the hustle only sets you back, but it really is true that there is so much value in unplugging and taking time away. Sometimes our brains just feel so clogged with all the information we receive on a daily basis that it gets hard to focus. Add to that the constant pressure we put on ourselves when we’re constantly comparing ourselves to others and it’s a breeding ground for all things negative. When you’re feeling uninspired, rather than continuing to look at all your peers’ content and feeling bad about how they’re doing so much and you feel like you’re doing nothing (or you feel like what you are putting out there sucks), step away. Take some time for yourself, unplug, do something you love, and don’t think about the hustle for a day or two. You’ll often find that something inspiring will come out of nowhere when you least expect it, and you’ll be back on track in no time and feeling much more refreshed and clear!
- Do something you love. Now that you have all this free time because you’re not scrolling through Instagram or staring at your feed plan tirelessly… take the time to focus on doing things you love that you haven’t been able to focus on much anymore. Whether it’s reading a good book, trying a new recipe, taking a spa day, watching movies, organizing your place… whatever it is do a hobby you love. You might be surprised to find that doing just that brings on the inspiration! Maybe you’ll love a new face mask you tried so much you’ll want to write about it… Maybe you’ll make a kick ass cookie recipe and you’ll want to share it on your blog.. Or maybe you’ll hear a topic discussed on TV that gets your gears turning and you want to discuss it. You’ll be surprised where inspiration can come from.
- Stop following those that make you question your own work (in a negative way). Although I strongly believe it’s important to surround yourself with people who constantly inspire you to be a better person (whether just in terms of what kind of person you are, or in terms of being a better content creator) it’s good to monitor and make sure these people leave you feeling motivated rather than deflated. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in feeling like you need to follow anyone and everyone on social. We follow people who have been doing this for 5 years more than we have and expect our work to be on the same level, and when it isn’t we beat on ourselves and our abilities. If certain accounts leave you questioning your own work in a negative way on a regular basis, unfollow them! And if there are accounts that leave you less than inspired unfollow them too. By minimizing who you follow and leaving it to only those accounts that really inspire you, you may find the ideas flow more easily!
- Write down your feelings. This doesn’t mean write out a blog post, although if you’re anything like me it will probably turn into one (like the time I started writing down my feelings about being an out of work actor, or the time I was trying to come to terms with the fact that I need to not be so hard on myself). Grab a notebook, open a blank word document, or take out your journal and just start writing. I’ve never really been one to keep a journal but lately I’ve found writing to be more therapeutic than anything. By writing out your thoughts you’re not only being honest about your feelings, but it gives you an opportunity to really think about why you’re feeling this way and what you can do about it. When you come to terms with the way you’re feeling and why you’re feeling that way, it’s often easy to find a solution to get out of that rut.
- Figure out what DOES inspire you. This means taking a step back and looking at your past work. When did you pump out the most blog posts or put out the best Instagram content? What was going on in your life then that had you feeling your most creative? After stepping back I’ve realized for me it’s always been when I’m traveling. I think the reason I feel so uninspired right now is because I loved my content while I was away, and now that I’m back it just feels like a struggle to create anything nearly as beautiful. Naturally when you feel like your content won’t be as nice as it was, you’re almost deterred from posting at all.. so it’s a negative loop that keeps you from creating!
- Once you’ve figured out what does inspire you the most, focus on that and be proactive! Now that you’ve had your break, taken the time to get in touch with how you feel, and figured out what really inspires you it’s time to be proactive! Now that I know what does inspire me the most (travel) it’s about figuring out how to make that happen. Of course not everyone can afford to just jet off anywhere anytime (myself included) but it comes down to figuring out the baby steps that you need to take to make it happen. In my case this means I need to plan smaller trips, and start reaching out to hotels and travel companies for sponsorship. Rather than sit on my butt upset because I have no upcoming trips planned, it’s time to be proactive and make them happen so I can start posting content that inspires me again!
- No matter what, don’t give up. Even if you’re still not feeling inspired by this point, don’t give up. Take a longer break, read blogs that inspire you, focus on your hobbies, write, and don’t ever feel pressured to create before you’re ready. Eventually something will give and you’ll be back on the creating train but until then focus on you and focus on fostering healthy + positive feelings about your journey.
I hope this post was useful to anyone who may be feeling in a bit of a creating slump, it happens to the best of us <3
What do you do when you’re feeling unmotivated and uninspired?