You and I, we both have different times when we’re in the zone and feeling inspired.
I’m in the zone right after I wake up and have had some freshly-squeezed juice.
But what do you do when you’re feeling uninspired? It’s easy to want to force it just so you can show your mind that you’re the one in control.
From my personal experience I’ve discovered that taking the form of water and going with the flow is where the least resistance is found.
Learning how to get inspired is almost an art in and of itself, at least it has been for me.
It’s about getting to know yourself and how your body, mind and soul work.
The best way to overcome feeling uninspired is to not write or produce anything at all, because it’ll usually not be anywhere near as good as it could be.
If you’re a writer, blogger or a content producer of any kind, you know that you can’t slack off when it comes to producing great content.
My personal strategy is to be proactive and take advantage of those times when I feel incredibly inspired, which usually means in the mornings.
I can easily write two or three posts each morning, but I like to keep it simple and write just one post daily. Sometimes I send these posts to other blogs and sometimes I save them as drafts on my blog for an inspiration recession.
5 Effective Tips on How to Get Inspired
Let’s be honest. There will come a time where you have to write something when you can’t seem to produce anything. In these instances, something special is required.
What personally gets me inspired and in the flow are the following five things:
1. Exercise. After some rigorous exercise my mind is always clear and calm. I’m feeling relaxed and after a shower all is well. I’ve noticed that my ideas seem to flow a lot better after exercise. I am almost able to recreate the amount of clarity I have in the morning. What kind of exercise am I talking about? Mainly something that gets your heart pumping, such as running, swimming or martial arts, but it can also be something like yoga, tai chi or anything along those lines. It all depends on who you are and how you’re wired.
2. Meditate. Meditation always works in getting me into the flow. I begin by focusing on my breath for 5-10 minutes. After that I start observing what it is that is blocking my inspiration from flowing freely. I usually find some fear that is causing the problem. I then observe the fear. I get curious and see where it takes me. When you allow the fear to be there, it usually fades away. At this point I go back into breathing until I feel clear, centered and calm. This helps lift my mood and bring back clarity.
3. EFT. I like to use Emotional Freedom Techniques in conjunction with meditation, because it enhances the effect it has. You can also use EFT alone and focus on the feeling of not feeling inspired and not being able to do what you want to do. As you keep working on the issue, you will notice other thoughts pop up. These may be fears, concerns, worries or anxieties. Work on them until you feel like you’re done.
4. Inspiration. The best source for inspiration is inspiration. Mindblowingly simple, isn’t it? What or who inspires you the most? Check out inspirational speeches, listen to inspirational music, watch an inspirational movie or do whatever uplifts you and gets you in the right mood.
5. Massage. Getting a light massage always makes me feel good, but if I go for an intense, full-body massage I come out too relaxed and want to take a nap, so there are lines you cannot cross if you want to be able to stay awake.
Most of my friends and family would probably say I’m impatient. Most of the time I benefit from it because I can channel my impatience into taking action, but where it hurts me is when I feel uninspired but want to force myself to produce something.
If you aren’t feeling inspired, the best thing you can do is take a step back and go do something else. Try the four tips above and I’ll guarantee that you’ll see a difference in how you feel.
Carrie @ Make Mine Happen says
I love EFT. In addition to Make Mine Happen, I cover massage therapy for Examiner.com and I will be writing on how EFT and massage are complimentary.
Surely I am biased, given massage is my “day job,” but I would certainly add massage and other types of bodywork to the list. Our brains and bodies function better when in parasympathetic (“rest and repose”) mode versus sympathetic (“adrenaline”) mode. 😉
I had no clue you were a massage therapist. My brother used to be a massage therapist as well. He still practices but not full time, more of a fun thing and I get to be his test subject. I’m adding massage to the list right now! 😉
Carrie @ Make Mine Happen says
Indeed! Other than blogging, of course, my #1 passion is massage. 😉 The day job: http://www.revolvemassage.net
My grandmother used to make apple and carrot juice all the time for me as a kid. It’s delicious!
Jennifer Hart says
Great insights for finding inspiration! Thank you for the reminder to go with the flow. In this information age, I sometimes feel bombarded and it seems so important to follow the inspiration!
Overwhelm visits me often too. Keeping focused and just doing something always helps me get clear even though I might not know what I’m doing. Thanks for stopping by, Jennifer!
I completely agree with your thoughts. Forcing yourself to be creative when you’re out of inspiration is not only painful, it often produces second rate results that you regret later. When I’m feeling low on inspiration I like to go for a walk. I’m lucky, I live by the sea so I can combine exercise with a great view and plenty of fresh air. However, what I really like about walking is it gets me out and about, away from the phone and other distractions, it gets my heart pumping, and I get to be alone with my thoughts. Often I can figure out, and sort out, what’s getting in the way of my inspiration flow, and by the time I’m finished I’m back in the zone!
Walking is something I do often as well. Since I moved to Spain I also have the privilege of walking near or on the beach (depending on the weather). It definitely helps clear your mind.
Archan Mehta says
There’s nothing to beat swimming. It is a total body work-out. At least this has been my experience. It pumps up your heart rate and improves the blood circulation. It is good for cario-vascular health. It works as a mood elevator.
I always feel rejuvenated whenever I feel low. Swimming is great for the “moody blues.” It is especially helpful to swim in an indoor pool when the weather outside is lousy, such as too much rain or snow. And freezing temperatures as well.
I also discovered how out of shape I was; people were way ahead of me. I mean, there was no comparison: I wasn’t even in the competition. The other recommendations you have made are all great too, but do go for a swim if you get a chance. I have never felt better in my life.
I feel a sense of elation after a swim and my mind is more agile and flexible.
Thanks for a great post. And for reminding us that we have options. Cheerio.
Sounds like swimming is your salvation! I’m going to start swimming in the ocean very soon here in Spain. I took a dip in January but it was freezing. I had to try!
Exercise is a biggie for me. A good run makes me feel like a different person. I must try EFT … I have been meaning to for a while.
I like the idea of being proactive in terms of getting ourselves inspired… we have a lot of influence over our internal state and it is good to harness that power. I think we all have natural peaks and flows with inspiration too so it’s also a good idea to catch the wave when it hits too. Also catching my ideas in a notebook when they come helps me for ideas when I come to writing.
I use a simple notebook myself. I’ve recently started using mind-mapping to get my blog post ideas down. I’m a visual person so it helps me see all the different categories and what I’ve already covered and what I could elaborate on.
great post, what i did was take a break, i didn’t write anything yesterday. although you make agood point about writing whatever, i want to write positive things therefore when my mind is not positive i take a break and breathe, re-focus. thanks.
Exactly. If you want to write inspiration or positive articles, make sure you’re in that state before you write!
Ben Weston says
I really like that you included EFT. Like you, I often find that lack of inspiration is due to some internal block. It’s also a wonderful way to get funny looks from people in public! =) Also, have you tried paraliminals? I find they are a nice pick me up.
I have tried paraliminals extensively a year or so ago. They didn’t do much for me, but then again, we’re all different. I’ve found EFT to work well for me at this moment in time.
Stephen Bozzone | Invention Addict says
I really enjoy articles about inspiration. The theme of my blog is to take people from Inspiration to Innovation. My mission is to take an idea through the inventing process to the point where it’s for sale to consumers.
I did not make the connection between exercise and inspiration but now that I think about it, one of my most inspired times was when I took a walk.
I was working at my day job and I was in the habit of taking a walk during my lunch break. By walking, I was away from the distractions of my phone and computer.
The ideas starting coming like a waterfall. I had been working on an invention for some time and got stuck. Some other ideas I had mingled together and I had a flash of inspiration.
The only problem was I forgot to bring a notebook! Next time I will think to make a voice recording on my phone.
I need to start bringing my voice recorder on my walks as well, or just bringing it with me whenever I go out because I always forget! I do however remember a few ideas when I get back so it works out pretty well anyway 😉
Ryhen | Mind Power says
I’m with you on “meditation,” Henri. I meditate for about 45 minutes after doing about 10 minutes of pranayama breathing exercises. However, this happens only when I get to have some peace and quiet around the house. Normally, I’d just sit in front of a wall in our backyard for 5-10 minutes several times during the day. That’s the time that I do get the inspiration to write. Sounds pretty boring, I know, but that’s when the good stuff start to enter my mind. Anyway, your post is awesome. Keep up the good work! =)
Peace and respect,
Meditation is extremely boring to the mind, but it is beneficial in so many different ways. I’m actually going to do some meditating right now. Thanks for the reminder!
Julius Kuhn-Regnier says
The best way for me to inspiration for what to write about is when I lie in bed. The other place that’s great to get new ideas is when taking a shower. I always get so many ideas it’s incredible.
Keep it up Henri!
I’m back from a quick meditation. Mmm, it was nice. Oh yeah, lying in bed is one of my favorites as well, forgot to mention that one!
Tara Sophia Mohr says
I think all of these are great techniques – and they help me clear my mind, get fresh perspective, etc. I would add to this list a great connection with another human being. For me, that’s always inspiring.
When it comes to blogging, I’ve learned that writing is a source of inspiration too. Even when I feel uninspired when I sit down to write, as I get started, inspiration comes. Getting started might be asking myself, “what’s really up in my life right now that I want to explore?” or it might be just starting to write about one of the topics I’ve noted somewhere.
I love the creative process. I get engaged in the process of crafting words, in looking for the right language for what I want to express. And I leave writing with the same refreshed, clear, happy, life-is-good feeling that I feel after a workout or a long chat with a dear friend.
Those are excellent suggestions. Now that I think of it, the hardest part of writing is getting started, after that everything seems to flow.
Kole McRae says
I’ve noticed this over the years but never actually put it down in words. Being a generally creative person I’ve realized that my projects always got far better when I was entering some new phase in life.
The first time it happened was back when I first moved out. My music suddenly went from mediocre to pretty amazing. Whenever I go out and play piano people still request songs I wrote from that period.
The next was when I first moved from Ontario to Alberta. All of a sudden I had a comedic voice. I’d write these simple essays based on crazy ideas that people fell head over heals for. Even got published for the first time.
Then I moved to British Columbia and became a screenwriter. My ideas suddenly got far better. People love my plays and monologues.
I’m trying to say that if you keep things the same every day your ideas will stay the same. You need to break free from any loops you’ve put yourself in. I don’t recommend the “write one page a day” thing that teachers spout at their pupils. I say get out and change your life. If your life is exciting and different, your writing will be too.
Rochman Reese says
One of the best ways to get inspired and to stay inspired is to surround yourself with uplifting and inspiring artworks. Artworks have such an amazing power to influence thoughts and emotions.
By the careful placement of inspiring paintings and sculptures, you can transform your living and working environments to be more loving, peaceful and happy places.
A really great artwork is a snapshot of the artists feelings, emotions and mental state at the time the artworks were being created.
So every time you look at an inspiring artwork it gently and subtly focuses your mind into a higher state. If you are looking for inspiration, what would you rather look at, a beautiful painting, or the seven o clock news full of doom and gloom?
There are some beautiful inspirational art works on http://www.theartofhappiness.net
Lots of Love, happiness and inspiration to you all