The Elevate Media Podcast

How To Overcome Creative Blocks in Business

August 25, 2023 Chris Anderson Episode 280
The Elevate Media Podcast
How To Overcome Creative Blocks in Business
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Struggling with creative blocks and looking for a way to charge ahead? Climb onboard as I, Chris Anderson, share nuggets from my personal journey to keep the creative juices flowing. With years of experience as the CEO and founder of Elevate Media Group, I've discovered there's an art and science to staying innovative, no matter how elusive inspiration seems. This episode is all about tapping into diverse sources, embracing constraints, exploring new environments, and collaborating - all powerful tools to ignite your creativity.

But creativity is just the start. The real magic happens when you can consistently churn out content that resonates with your audience. Here's where we roll up our sleeves and dive into the nitty-gritty of consistency in content creation, a game-changer in audience growth. From maintaining quality while increasing quantity, to mastering time management strategies like batching, let's explore together how to transform your creative blocks into stepping stones for success. Get ready to elevate your content creation game to new heights, and remember - sometimes, failure is just another step towards success!

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Speaker 1:

Welcome to the Elevate Media Podcast with your host, chris Anderson. In this show, chris and his guests will share their knowledge and experience on how to go from zero to successful entrepreneur. They have built their businesses from scratch and are now ready to give back to those who are just starting. Let's get ready to learn, grow and elevate our businesses. And now your host, chris Anderson.

Speaker 2:

Welcome back to another episode of the Elevate Media Podcast. I am Chris Anderson, your host. Today we're going to dive into a topic that anyone who's creating content or growing a business can probably relate to overcoming creative blocks. In this episode, I'm going to unravel the secrets to breaking free from those frustrating moments when inspiration seems to play hide and seek. I know I've struggled with this and I'm sure you've probably dealt with it at some point or not. If not, hey, you're lucky. So, as entrepreneurs, content creators and visionaries, we all have those times where we get into creative slumps. It dampens our productivity and innovation right. But don't worry, because this next, because the information I've gathered, along with some tips, will help you overcome those roadblocks and keep your creative juices flowing. So I've been doing this for multiple years as the CEO and founder of Elevate Media Group and the host of the Elevate Media Podcast. So I understand how important it is to have consistency when delivering top-notch content for your audience. Whether you're working on video podcasts, corporate course videos or coaching content, maintaining a fresh and engaging perspective is key. So throughout this episode, we're going to discuss strategies I've personally employed to overcome creative challenges and sustain a steady stream of creative ideas. So if you're ready to overcome those blocks and your creativity and take your content creation to that next level, this episode is for you. Let's turn those creative slumps into stepping stones towards success, and what we're going to start with that is we have to understand what creative blocks really are. Here at Elevate Media Group, we've encountered our fair share of creative challenges while producing top-tier content, whether it's video, podcasting or our courses, or even helping other people do this same thing. These experiences have helped me and the team gain insight into the delicate balance between creativity. Creative blocks are those frustrating roadblocks that impede our creative process. They're the ones where you get you stumped, get you frustrated, wondering am I supposed to be doing this? I can't come up with ideas. They can take the form of those dwindling ideas, the monotony of routine or the weight of self-doubt. Whether you've been doing this a while or just getting started, you've experienced creative blocks, and it's common for everybody. When we can understand that creative blocks are a natural part of our journey in creating content that's going to help us so much. Just as a river navigates obstacles in its path, so too does your creativity encounter challenges that it has to meander and avoid. When we can accept this fact. That can alleviate a lot of the frustrations that often accompany these slumps. We get in Now. Remember, even the most accomplished entrepreneurs and artists have faced some sort of hurdles, just like these. The sources of created blocks are diverse. There's a lot of different ways. The different things that cause this to have created blocks vary. There's external stressors to internal perfectionism. External factors, like personal issues, can infiltrate your creative space, cloud your thoughts, stifling your imagination, and, on the other hand, internal factors such as fear of failure can also create some big barriers. Now consider the creative process itself, which has a lot of stages, from gathering inspiration to refining concepts. Different types of blocks can emerge at each stage. For instance, during brainstorming, a block might limit your ability to think innovatively. It's important to take note that not all creative blocks are equal. Some signal a need for rest, while others suggest a necessary change in approach. Recognizing the root cause is vital in effectively addressing these challenges. So we're going to go over now the significance of consistency and how that can help us with these creative blocks. Now, consistency isn't just a buzzword. It's truly a cornerstone for your success. As the famous entrepreneur Jim Rohn once said, success is neither magical nor mysterious. It's the natural consequence of consistently applying basic fundamentals. As the famous entrepreneur Jim Rohn once said, success is neither magical or mysterious. It's the natural consequence of consistently applying basic fundamentals. In a world of content creation, whether, again, you're crafting video, podcasts, course videos or just material to put out there on the internet, maintaining a consistent output is vital for growing your audience, growing your business, growing your brand. So your audience craves regular engagement, and that consistency builds some anticipation. They know what's coming. According to a study by HubSpot, companies that publish 16 or more blog posts a month get 3.5 times more traffic than those publishing four or fewer. This principle applies equally to other forms of content as well. Whether it be YouTube videos, whether it be podcast episodes, it all correlates. Consistency isn't just solely about quantity, though. It's also about the quality. Each piece of content you create should uphold a standard that resonates with your audience. You should be giving your very best, no matter what that looks like. Your content becomes a reflection of your brand's identity. Just as we've built Elevate Media Group on excellence, your content should consistently reflect that excellence as well, and if you're just starting out, you have to do the best you can regardless, and so that should be your level, until you can innovate and grow and implement new technology and new tools to make it even better. Consistency is the key to content marketing success, and that is a quote from the Content Marketing Institute. It's not just about producing content. It's about creating a reliable experience for your audience. This experience builds trust and loyalty over time, and that's what we want. We want to build trust and loyalty within our audience so we can help them with what we have. And we can't overlook the role of consistency and how it plays a part in overcoming creative blocks. So the act of consistently showing up to work on your craft can serve as a lifeline during those moments of stagnation. It's a practice that keeps your creative muscles flexed and ready for action. And something I find really interesting with consistency is the compound effect. Each piece of content you create adds to your body of work, contributing to your online present and authority. So the more you put out there, the more people see it, the more people begin to trust no one like you, which raises you in their mind as experts and authorities. Just as drops of water gradually carve out canyons, your consistent efforts pave the way for success. This will resonate with your goal of building a successful six, seven or eight-figure business. Consider other successful individuals in your industry. They all understand the one thing the importance of consistent interaction with their audience is key. The content they put out there plays a pivotal role in the growth of their businesses and brands, and it's the same for you. Consistently delivering value positions you as a reliable resource in the eyes of your audience on their journey. But of course, just like any journey, challenges will come up. So how do you maintain consistency in the face of a busy schedule or all your kids' events or travel? One approach I love is batching content creation, batching video recordings, batching episodes. This is where you dedicate specific blocks of time to produce multiple pieces of content in advance. This not only ensures a consistent flow because you get a head, but it also allows for more efficient use of your creative energy. What I've done to improve time management is undoubtedly a huge skill that I've had at home along the way and it's made such a difference. It's one of the reasons we've almost released 300 episodes without missing one week. Batch recording has played a huge part in that, because, as I batch record episodes, when I first started I would just randomly record and hope to get enough before the next release day came out. And then I got a little bit smarter and I had a little bit more time. So I took the first week of every month where I would record as many episodes as I could to get ahead, which put me months in advance in the release of episodes. That way if something happened I didn't have to sweat it. I was two months in advance. And then as we started to grow out, elevate and things changed I had two kids the schedule changed. So now I do two days the first week of every month and all I do is record either guest interviews or these solo episodes, and so I batch all of them ahead of time again so I can be months in advance. So when we take a trip to Texas for a month to see my wife's family, I don't have to worry about recording. I don't have to worry about my episodes not coming out because I'm so far ahead. It takes sacrifice of time and fun twice or four times a month, whatever fits your schedule. Sacrifice a little time or a little fun instead of partying on the weekends. Take a weekend or two and get two months of content done ahead of time, but you've got to be willing to sacrifice. You've got to be willing to have that time management and batch create to get ahead. And remember, being consistent doesn't mean you won't face hurdles. There's going to be days when the creative well seems to be dry, but you've got to push through. And pushing through these moments is where true growth happens when you don't feel like doing it, when you can't figure it out, but you keep moving on anyways. As the saying goes, you can't use up creativity the more you use, the more you have. So tap into that, even when it feels challenging. Consistency is the beating heart of content creation. It's that rhythm that keeps your audience engaged in your creative spirit alive. Just like you built your business where you are right now, with consistency, your content will be the bridge to future endeavors. So now I want to give you some practical strategies to overcome these creative blocks you get in After creating content. Creativity is the currency Steve Jobs once said creativity is just connecting things, and when those connections seem elusive, it's time to arm ourselves with effective strategies to overcome that. One of the most potent techniques is the power of mindfulness. Taking a step back and being fully present can clear mental clutter. There's a quote by John Cabot-Zinn. He says mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgmentally. Incorporating mindfulness exercises into your routine can disperse the clouds of creative stagnation. We can get so overwhelmed with everything going on imposter syndrome, everything else that's flying at us on social media that we can get bogged down. So when you can take a step away, take a step back and clear that mindset, you're going to be able to get creative again. You're going to get ideas because you're not going to have all this stuff flying around in your mind. Diverse input fuels diverse output, so seeking inspiration from various sources can jump through your creativity as well. Picasso famously said good artist copy, great artist steal. Now, this isn't about plagiarism, but about drawing from different perspectives to generate fresh ideas. There's nothing new under the sun. So you're going to be able to get fresh ideas from wherever you go. Maybe if you're out taking a trip and you see some marking material and you think it's a great idea, you can implement part of that into your brand or into your content. Maybe you're reading a book, maybe you watched a movie, whatever it is, you can glean ideas from all over the place. You just got to be open to it and allow your mind to see those. And then sometimes we need to embrace constraints as catalysts for creativity. Constraints force you to think outside the box. Again, we talk about them a lot. Seth Godin notes art is about intent and making choices as opposed to eliminating options. Try to get creative. A problem outside of the box instead of limiting yourself and this is a big one I use is change of environment. This can trigger change in perspective. I like to go outside and just get away from the office and out of the house and things of that nature, to just let my mind again take a step back and just have an open mind of thought. And this is what you can do is getting out of that environment, changing the scenery, the scenario you're in, to get a fresh glimpse on things, and, according to research by the Association of Psychological Science, a change in scenery can actually enhance cognitive function and boost creativity. Something else you can think of and use is collaboration. It's another really good tool. Get with other people in your industry. Get with other people in your industry or who you trust and who you can brainstorm ideas with and bounce ideas off one another. This can help you get new ideas and breathe some life into your content. There's a study published in the Journal of Applied Cognitive Psychology and it found that group brainstorming generates more diverse ideas than individual brainstorming. And if you read the book Thinking Grow Rich, you understand the power of a mastermind and having people in a group that all have big goals similar to yours. That will help spur ideas and spur each other on to that next level. So you got to think about it that way. Collaboration is a huge key to help you overcome creative blocks, and then you can set specific goals and this will help combat aimlessness. So if you don't really know where you're going, if you have a specific goal, that'll hone you in. There's a research psychologist named Edwin Locke and he had a goal setting theory and it emphasized that setting clear goals and challenging goals enhances motivation and performance. So when you feel like you don't know what to create, then maybe your goals aren't specific enough. Maybe you don't know where you're going, maybe you don't know exactly how you're helping someone. So when you do that, you get clear on that direction and being able to create content that aligns with that ultimate goal and then, of course, having a routine that can spark creativity by training your brain to expect creative sessions. So if you do it on the same time, that consistency primes your mind to shift into creative gear. And that's something neuroscientists, heather Berlin, studied and found to be true as well that if you actually have a specific set routine that has specific time and place, you go into just creative flow. That if you do that enough, that once you get in that space and time, you become more creative and come up with new ideas, better ideas, because you are on that routine in your body and your mind get used to that. And then we have to embrace failure. It's a stepping stone, it's not the end, and Thomas Edison put it best I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that it won't work. Now, accepting failure is just part of the process and it reduces the fear that can contribute to creative blocks. And this one is a great one and I use as well. A lot is unplugging and recharging your mind. I don't know how many times, and you've probably been there too, that being constantly connected can lead to burnout or the feelings of burnout Always on your phone, always posting, always researching content, ideas, or seeing what people in your market are doing or seeing what your audience is asking. Doing that so much can just drain you mentally. There's a study in the Journal of Computers in Human Behavior and they found that even a brief nature walk can improve attention and cognitive function. So again it goes back to that removing yourself. Get into a new environment, get into a new situation, let your mind rest a little bit, change your environment, and that can help you overcome these creative blocks. So those are just some of the things you can do, and there's a lot more, but we spent a whole another hour probably on those. So make sure you go, try to incorporate some of these into your strategies, into your routines, so you can transform your relationship with those creative blocks. The journey of content creation is a maze of challenges, but armed with these tools that I've just went over, you're definitely now equipped to navigate them better and successfully. But I really want to hit on this next point. That's a high percentage of what people deal with that causes creative blocks and that's self-doubt. Now, self-doubt is that nagging voice that questions your abilities, that familiar adversary. Now it's time to learn how to silence that with strategies to build your self-confidence and bolster your creative journey. You've got to embrace your accomplishments, for one Self-doubt tries to overshadow those achievements you've done. Need to take a moment and reflect on what you've accomplished. Celebrate the small wins. Maya Angelou said success is liking yourself, liking what you do and liking how you do it. Remember you've already taken a step to start your business. That's something to celebrate. You also have to watch how you talk to yourself, how your inner critic talks. From being a negative to an inner cheerleader can change everything. If you're going to replace I can't with I'll find a way. That little shift right there can reshape your mindset and invigorate your confidence. But we've got to talk to ourself well. And then we've got to focus on growth, not perfectionism. Perfectionism fuels self-doubt because nothing's perfect. Instead, embrace the growth mindset. You've got to view challenges as opportunities for growth that enhance resilience and understand that imperfections are just the stepping stones, the building blocks to improvement and growth. And this fourth one this is one that a lot of people struggle with is seeking external validation. We need to seek external validation sparingly. It has its place, but excessive reliance on it can foster so much self-doubt. And that's what we're seeing a lot with younger kids, especially with them being so present on social media all the time, it's always that comparison game. Being online, everyone just showing everything is quote unquote perfect when it's not really. And when people just see that it throws them off. It gets them into self-doubt. Tim Ferriss once said that the superheroes you have in your mind the idols, icons, titans are nearly all walking flaws who've maximized one or two strengths. So think about that when you think about your heroes or the people you look up to and you do the same. Place your strengths, focus on those and acknowledge your errors for improvement. Remember self-doubt is a universal experience. Everyone deals with it. Celebrate. A figure like Albert Einstein even faced it, and he put it this way the only sure way to avoid making mistakes is to have no new ideas. So channel yourself doubt into fuel for growth and innovation, Because when we can realize failure isn't a dead end but a crossroads of lessons, we're better off. Henry Ford once said failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently. Failure is universal. It's a companion to all of us on this path to success. Walt Disney faced multiple rejections before Mickey Mouse became an icon. Jk Rowling weathered numerous rejections before Harry Potter enchanted the world. These stories remind us that setbacks are stepping stones towards achievement. I bet you didn't know Harrison Ford was a carpenter before he got his big breaks, and so many actors and actresses waited tables before they got their shot. Failure unveils invaluable lessons. The process of identifying what went wrong allows us to see what can be improved upon. Each setback contributes to the mosaic of your expertise and your journey. It's just an exercise in resilience. It toughens your resolve and fortifies your spirit. According to psychologist Angela Lee Duckworth, grit, the perseverance and passion for long-term goals is a better predictor of success than talent alone. Failure is just a reminder of your courage to try, and it's the launch pad for innovation. There's not much difference between success and failure. Really, the only difference is experimentation. Failed attempts stress your creativity and inspire out of the box thinking. Failure fosters empathy and relatability. Your audience connects more deeply when they see your journey, with its highs and lows. Being vulnerable in this matter transforms you from a distant figure into a relatable human. So as you aim to build your business, you've got to recognize that not every endeavor will yield immediate success, but each setback can fuel your fire for achievement. Remember that failure is a teacher, not a punishment. It's a compass pointing towards growth and evolution. Remember Winston Churchill's words resonate well here when he said success is not final, failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue. That counts. So that's all I have for this episode as we come to an end. I want to thank you for listening in today. If you found anything valuable in this episode anything at all please go leave a rating and review. I'd love to hear from you. Motivates me to keep going and share this. Someone, Maybe someone you know, is starting their business or starting something that they might get a lot of self-doubt trying to create content around. Share this with them. Let's help more people together by doing that, but until then, keep creating, Use these tools to become more creative. Don't worry about failing, and keep going out and elevating your life, elevating your podcast, elevate your business. We'll talk to you again soon.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for listening to the Elevate Media Podcast. Don't forget to subscribe and leave a review. See you in the next episode.

Overcoming Creative Blocks and Maintaining Consistency
Strategies for Overcoming Creative Blocks