25. Breaking creative block

I’ve never really prepared for what to write for the day. An idea would usually come to me early in the morning. Something will spark on the journey from my bed to my bus stop. Either about an idea from the past, inspiration from a recent reading, or feeling I am experiencing.

But today, I got nothing.

I’m only a quarter into my #100NakedWords challenge. There are 75 more days to go and I’m worried if I will run out of things to write. Worried that I might have exhausted all my creative juice and inspirations.

So I decided to create an idea inventory. A list which I can pick ideas and go with at times of creative emergency like this.

Then I thought of what James Altucher said about becoming an idea machine. Part of the exercise is to come up with 10 new ideas a day. And If you can’t come up with ten, go for twenty. When I first read that, I thought it was ludicrous. If I can’t event come up with ten, how am I supposed to think of the extra ten?

But then what he said makes sense, for obvious reasons. We tend to put too much pressure on ourselves. We yearn too much for perfection. We avoid exploring unchartered territories, for the fear of embarrassment.

So when you expand your list to twenty, you are telling your brain to chill the fuck out. That it’s okay to come up with bad ideas. You force it to come up with bad ideas. Allow yourself to make mistakes, to be silly and ridiculous. The point here is to not impress anyone. But to let our creativity flow freely. Each new idea creates links to new possibilities. Continue exploring those possibilities and we’ll arrive at something great eventually.