Is Your 9-to-5 Draining Your Creativity?

OK Go are known for their creative music videos, and their most recent release is definitely on par.  After all, why stand on stage playing instruments (yawn!), when you can use a car with retractable arms to play the instruments for you?  These guys are either insane or genius – decide for yourself.  (Click here to watch the video for “Needing/Getting”!)

Musicians are usually creative by nature.  But sometimes – especially if music is something you do in your spare time, instead of as your career – it can be all too easy to get caught up with the routine of life.  Maybe you have to stay late at work, and the last thing you want to do is practice scales and etudes when you get home.  Maybe your goal is to write a song, but the lyrics just aren’t coming to you.  Maybe you’ve practiced your heart out, but the idea of performing in front of people makes you break out in hives.  But why give up on something you were once so passionate about?

Being creative is something that needs to be exercised, just like a baseball player exercises certain muscles.  So if the daily grind is starting to get to you, it’s time to take action.  Shake up your routine and jump-start your creative mind.  Even if the initial activity doesn’t involve music, it may awaken parts of your brain that will help you in music later on.  Need some ideas?  Here are 10 ways to rejuvenate your creativity, courtesy of

1. Surround yourself with creative people. Hang out with writers, musicians, poets and artists. Often, just being in a creative environment will inspire you and refresh your creative mind.
2. Start somewhere. Whether it’s creative writing in Word or sheet music, the brain will eventually loosen up and it will be easier to break through the barrier and come up with ideas.
3. Expose yourself. Expose yourself to new art – books, music, paintings – all the time. If you’re a rocker, listen to funk. If you’re a crime writer, read fantasy. If you’re a productivity writer, read something about slacking off.
4. Do something new. Play chess. Read a book if you usually watch television and watch television if you read. Go outside. Sing in the shower.
5. Meet new people from different walks of life. Gain insight into their perspectives on life. Strike up a conversation on the bus.
6. Shut out the world. Instead of sucking in new information, sit quietly, go to sleep or meditate. Stop thinking and clear your mind so that the clutter doesn’t get in the way of your thoughts.
7. Don’t be a workaholic – take breaks. Your mind needs a chance to wind down so it doesn’t overheat and crash.
8. Experiment randomly. What does a flanger sound like on a vocal track? Like Lenny Kravitz, of course.
9. Exercise every day, before you sit down to be creative. If you exercise afterward, you’ll get the creative burst – just too late.
10. Spend time with your children. Or someone else’s.

What other ideas have you tried when you feel your creativity dragging?  Share your thoughts below! Like these posts?  Sign up to receive daily updates right to your inbox!  Click here to subscribe.



You might also like…

Stuck In a Musical Rut?  Here’s How To Get Out
Stop Stressing: 3 Remedies For Musical Frustration
5 Ways to Practice Without Your Guitar


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