Are you finding it impossible to be productive? Has a mental block affected your ability to create and perform? Find out how you can get over the problem in the article below!
How Can I Learn To Get Rid Of Mental Blocks?
Unless you are exceptionally lucky and a miracle, chances are that you have experienced some sort of mental block sometime in your life. These ruts in the road are quite common, and no person is exempted from them – no matter how talented you may be!
Even great personalities like Maya Angelou, Leo Tolstoy, and our favourite fantasy writer J.K Rowling have admitted to having suffered from these. So, why would it spare you and me?!
From this, one thing is absolutely clear. Mental blocks are not related to creativity – or lack thereof – in any way. So, if you had begun to doubt your talent just because you hit an unpleasant bump on the road, stop right away! Though frustrating and exasperating, mental blocks are natural and extremely common for all creative people.
So, if mental blocks are so commonplace, has anyone figured out a secret way to get past them? Before we begin answering this question, let us spare a moment to define the exact problem.
What Exactly Is A Mental Block?
The internet defines a mental block as “an inability to recall something or to perform a mental action”. I like to describe it as “a pain in the ass”.
The English language has called the same problem with multiple things. A mental block, writer’s block, brain fog, or any other related term roughly mean the same thing. They all refer to a barrier in your mind that keeps you from achieving all that you want to make.
Whether it is writing the next chapter of your book, painting the wall of your room, or coming up with an excellent marketing strategy – mental blocks can really get you down. They can happen to anyone, at any time, and do not always stem from identifiable causes.
Can You Really Navigate Your Way Out Of A Mental Block?
Now that we have got the definition down, how do we address this problem? Is there any way out of it? Or is one just supposed to wait until it magically disappears? Is there anything you can do to prevent a mental block from taking over in the first place?
While stopping a mental block from happening is not that achievable, you can certainly navigate your way through it. There is no need to panic and get even more stressed when you are hit with a mental block. Several techniques can help you deal with the toughest of stumbling blocks in your way.
One of these many ways of solving a mental block is to wait it out. This is a solution that is recommended by many. However, going down this course will take you a significant amount of precious time, and is not always feasible. Therefore, #IChoose to make a conscious effort to find my way out whenever I am stuck in a brain fog. Here are some of the ways I have fought this nightmare in the past.
#iChoose To Create The Perfect Space To Be Productive
In my personal experience, I have seen that I fall victim to this torturous ordeal most often when I do not have the right space to work with. It is when I am working in a noisy cafe and I cannot seem to know how to progress. And when I finally find that perfect spot in the library where nobody disrupts my work, I get through all my assignments in a breeze. When this happened to me a few times, I realized the true importance of a perfect workspace.
And so, when I have a big project to tackle now, I always ensure that my settings are favourable. Doing this one thing has saved me from getting stuck in a place and missing deadlines more times than I can count.
#iChoose To Make Sure I Know All That I Have To Do
A lot of the times, it is the lack of direction that fuels a mental block that just won’t leave you alone. When you do not know your own agenda, how can you expect yourself to stick to it?
And this is where my love for bulletin boards stems from. Making lists of all the things you have to accomplish, and putting them up allows you to focus on the essential tasks. It serves as a constant reminder and motivation for all your projects and keeps you right on track. Trust me, do this once and you will never want to go back!
#iChoose To Take A Breather And Get Closer To Nature
When you have got a lot of things up on your bulletin board, sometimes you will get intimidated and lose your motivation. This will further fuel your creativity block and stop you from being productive. So, how do you tackle this problem?
When I find myself in such a situation, I like to take a step back instead of trying to trudge on through the mud. Every once in a while, it is vital to take a breather. And while you are doing that, try getting to be one with nature. A walk in the park, some gardening in the backyard, or a short camping trip always lifts my spirits and gets me in a productive mood.
#iChoose To Start Small And Take Things One At A Time
However, you will still have that long to-do list to tend to when you get back from your walk in the park. How do you find the motivation to get through it?
Whenever I’ve got a never-ending agenda, I like to start with the easiest thing. Instead of tackling a significant project, #IChoose to start small and work my way upwards. Ticking off these small projects off the list gives me a sense of accomplishment and allows me to prepare myself for the more difficult ones that lie ahead.
#iChoose To Go On A Social Media Cleanse
When you are trapped in an endless mental block, a lot of people turn towards social media to blow off steam. They will tweet, post, like, comment, and share endlessly in efforts of distracting themselves from the brain fog they are experiencing. However, in my experience, I have felt that doing this is counterproductive.
Looking for inspiration or relieving stress by going on social media can be tempting, but it hardly ever works. In my opinion, social media is a black hole that just sucks you in itself and wastes precious time without offering much in return. Therefore, deactivating my social media account is often my first step to tackling a mental block.
Going on a social media cleanse exceedingly helps me focus and see things from a broader perspective. In case of a period of low productivity, I would much instead read a book than scroll through Instagram for hours at a time.
#iChoose To Indulge In Things I Would Enjoy As A Child
Another great way to relax and relieve some of the pressure you are feeling from being in a mental block is to go back to your childhood. This is a tried and tested technique to conquer the most complex of all mental blocks.
When I feel too overwhelmed by the things at hand, #IChoose to indulge in the little things I used to love as a child. Going to the beach, swinging in the park, and enjoying an ice cream on a sunny afternoon are all activities that help calm me down and ground me.
#iChoose To Try My Hand At Something New
Sometimes, it feels like I have tried everything in the book, and yet the mental block refuses to leave me. I try to relax myself, organize and prioritize my agenda, and do various activities that promise to boost creativity.
Yet, at times, nothing seems to work. When I feel like I have exhausted all my resources, I decide to try my hand at something new. And more times than not, I feel it brings something good my way. If you feel the same way, then I recommend you to give this a try.
This new activity can be anything that interests and intrigues you. It can be learning to knit, reading a new book, or even cooking yourself a meal. Even if it doesn’t work at getting you out of the rut you are stuck in, you leave with a new experience! What could go wrong?
Wrapping It Up
Whether you like it or not, mental blocks are occasionally going to happen to you, as they happen with all other creative people. Hence, the best way to go about them is to prepare yourself against them.
Wallowing in self-pity is not going to get you anywhere. If that is what you are used to doing whenever a writer’s block hits you, it’s time that you went in with a different approach. Try the above tips and tricks and see yourself overcoming mental blocks that you thought you would never get over!
Patricia Love, The RahRah Coach