Reigniting Your Creative Spark

by Denise Jacobs

13 Reader Comments

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  1. I wholeheartedly concur with the value of setting yourself a challenge to overcome if you feel stagnant in your work. Just recently, I was tasked with a web design project that just did not excite me, but I decided to turn it into an opportunity to pick up some experience using lettering.js and a jquery rotator. Indeed, when I changed careers and went to design school for 2 years in my late 30s, I turned every assignment, even if it seemed boring, into one that would add to my skill set. But as to the advice to squat in a coffeehouse for “inspiration” : please, we need fewer all-day squatters—some of us, including me, go to coffee shops to get OFF the grid and sit and drink coffee, maybe read the sports section…it would be nice to actually have a chance of a seat!
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  2. I have been struggling with depression lately and very unmotivated in generally. This article has described my situation really well and made me realise I’m not alone with this. This is some great advice and I am already feeling more positive about my work. thank you :)
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  3. @Chris Raymond - So fantastic that you totally got what I was getting at: that making something interesting and turning it into a game of sorts where you reach a goal and gain skills along the way can totally transform the mundane into the sublime. I’m glad that trick worked for you in school. The advice to sit in a coffee house is not necessarily literal - there are a lot of modern-day “coffeehouses” that will serve the purpose well: conferences, tweetups, networking functions, volunteer committees. The gist is really more to get out of your house and your head and around other people to mix and mingle ideas. Starbucks or the equivalent need not be the spot to do so. :)
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  4. @mechanism - I am so, so glad that the information in the article helped to raise your mood! It sounds like you’re about to put yourself on the right track, and that looking at where you have been focusing will probably help a lot. Please do keep me posted on your progress, and feel free to email me directly at denise@denisejacobs.com if you have any questions or need another boost. :)
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  5. Definitely a good read, appreciate your article.
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  6. Maybe I’m new to the blog, but am trying to understand exactly what you mean when you say, “Consider where you feel bored, stymied, unappreciated, and frustrated with seemingly pointless tasks. If you’re feeling this way, there’s good news: you can infuse new life into your work life by gamifying it.” Is there a process of gamification that I may pursue?
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  7. Having moved from a small town to a big city and shacked up with a delightfully social roommate, I have discovered that my previous self-identification as one who re-energizes after a period of solitude is completely delusional. This truly is the DIWO era: for as much as I’d like to fancy myself a lone wolf type, most thoughtful and productive on my own, I actually revive my creative inclinations during a great discussion or activity with friends and co-workers.
    Strange, because during my undergrad I always enjoyed meeting with others from my classes to muscle through a poem or piece of short fiction and come up with wicked ideas collaboratively. But I never made the connection.
    DIWO! Great point!
    Cheers, Sarah Bauer
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  8. Browsing through Flickr is also a great way of finding new inspiration, because it’s not web design but it is still art/design related.
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  9. This was a very well written and helpful article that highly related to the current situation of myself and the design firm I work for. We currently all work remotely, myself as a designer. Working from my own room can prove to be distracting on occasion, but all the points you made, I was able to fit myself into and see that they could work if I am to feel unmotivated or lacking creativity.
    I was also very impressed with your section on idea creation and collaboration, as this is also a challenge for our firm. Lacking an office where we can constantly feed off of each other for creativity and idea generation, it is sometimes hard to move forward on some projects. We have discovered the value of and our need for brainstorming with a variety of people within our firm, and the suggestions and points you made will help in the process, with or without an office space. Thanks!
    @BopDesignSD
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  10. I think travel and getting yourself out of your comfort zone is the greatest inspiration for creativity, at least for me.  If you want to hit that Flashlight “rabbit hole”, then you need to put yourself in different situations.
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  11. Seriously, this entire post was THE BUSINESS! The best two paragraphs I have ever read in my entire life, *and I have read many paragraphs* is “Be A Stress Alchemist”, It almost brought tears to my eyes! I thought maybe I was the only one with serious external stressors, especially the ones that have plagued me for a long time. I have read those two paragraphs, over and over, and my entire physical disposition changes with every re-read, it’s like the whole world just changed before my eyes, being a recent graduate with surmounting debt and a crap-tastic economy, this entire article changed my life. I don’t even know how to repay you, I’ll figure something out.
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  12. @DjarumS - That’s freakin’ AWESOME! How wonderful that those words facilitated such a profound shift for you! Yes, practicing that perceptual shift (indeed ANY perceptual shift) can be life-transforming. No repayment is necessary - your comment is a enough to affirm the power of the practices suggested in the article. Thanks for taking the time to comment!
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  13. Denise,
    You’re a wonderful writer. I keep a keen eye on the competition and that’s where my motivation comes from. Sometimes we need our rest, anything in excess is not good at all. But what you put into something is what you get out of it. Goes for anything in life.
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