As a freelance journalist/part-time language instructor, it’s up to me to keep my ideas open and flowing. Writers and journalists always need to have multiple stories ready at any given time while being an instructor means I must constantly be looking for ways to engage the minds of my students.

Taking a long walk in nature has always provided me with a way to feel open to new ideas. This time alone calms my mind and lets fresh thoughts in. As I stroll, I have my phone handy so I can speak and idea into a notetaking app or sit for a moment to catch my breath and jot down an idea.

Then, winter comes and along with it the snow and rainy season. Inclement weather means I’m stuck inside alone with my (frustratingly useless) thoughts. Walks in nature are out of the equation.

Here are some other methods I use to spark creativity when I’m stuck indoors due to weather, illness (self-quarantine, anyone?), or just plain life:

  • Washing dishes, folding laundry, general housework: repetitive activity dulls the mind into a state of calm where creative thoughts can break free.
  • Music: whether playing an instrument or just blasting the tunes via the radio, music is a great way to inspire thoughts
  • Sex: as a stress reliever, sex is one of the best ways to relax and recharge your batteries. For creatives who feel blocked, the burst of oxytocin from sex with a loving partner opens channels of inspiration and engages another level of being.

An important thing to remember is that creative blocks happen to everyone. The most effective way to work through them is simply to sit down and *work*. If all else fails, writing about my frustrations gets my mind moving and helps me feel a little more productive 😉