11 Oct 2016
We’ve all been there, getting creative sometimes comes easy, but not always.
Check out our top ways of boosting your creativity from making (differently) to meditation, it’s all here
Meditating is great, it gives you time to stop and not think about anything to do with your day, or with music. Had a bad day at the office? That’s probably not good for you, especially not good for being creative. Take 5, meditate and think about what you’re trying to achieve from a relaxed and totally creative state.
2. Don’t follow your roots
If something works then why fix it? This is a true statement, but we get stagnant if we do this, just generally bored. If I’m writing, I want it to be something people will enjoy and not get bored of, so if I do the same thing over and over again, it’s gonna get very annoying for me, and for the people listening to my music.
Open up a project, listen to something that is out of your comfort zone, take an idea, a rhythm, a syncopation, anything and try and build something from that. It can still sound like you, but a more interesting and thought provoking you.
3. Stop drinking coffee and other totally legal drugs (the illegal ones are bad too)
I’m a hypocrite, I don’t think there’s an hour of the day where there isn’t a coffee in my hand. But, I know this is bad, bad for me, and bad for my creativity. If you’re constantly wired, your brain will be working in overdrive and your thought processes won’t be as creative as they could be.
Not to sound too much like a hipster or a health freak, but switch this out for a shake, you get tonnes of energy from shakes crammed with veg and fruits. We all love kale and avocado, right?
4. Go for a run, but don’t listen to your mix.
Running is good, I spend the whole time concentrating on getting home and I don’t have time to think about much else. If I do think about things, it’s never really about creative stuff, ‘what am I going to do tonight?’, ‘what kind of unit should I get to go in my utility room?’, the list goes on. Your brain switches from doing the normal thinking to thinking about totally different stuff, unless you want to think about your mix, but I doubt you would really want to be thinking about this right now.
Take a run, listen to some music and switch off from your normal brain. You’re concentrating on your pace, your breathing and your stamina. Once you’ve excercised your body releases endorphins, the feel good hormone into your blood stream. You’ll feel much happier, and hopefully relaxed, this is perfect for your creativity.
5. Lower your expectations
You’re not going to create a banger in an hour. Relax your thinking about something, if you have an idea, get it down and play around with it, but don’t expect it to be finished within a day, it’s not always that easy. We do wish this was the case.
Great ideas don’t come from stress. When you’re relaxed, creative ideas come naturally and you will have more of a flow. When people are stressed, the brain struggles with decision-making and this can seriously hinder your creative outputs.
When we are stressed we will spend more time fixated on one aspect of a project. We should think rationally, if it’s not working, explore other ways, but when we are stressed we get suck in a loop where we should be completing the project and moving onto the next.
Part of being creative is that we are adaptable to change, so embrace it and don’t get stuck on the smaller things.
Reading, for the very little bit I do, is very relaxing. It puts you into another state of relaxation. My brain still goes on and is still being creative, reading lets your brain paint the picture, but at the same time you’re not over-stressing or thinking about how your kick drum sounds through an iPhone.
Reading actually reduces stress more than music, and if your music is stressing you out and stopping your creativity then this is a sure thing that will get you to chill out.
Reading also improves your concentration and focus, when living in a 6 second Vine (RIP) world, is really important.
8. Don’t beat yourself up
We’ve all been there, and we will still go there again. Something’s not working out and you do anything to try and get it to work, but it does’t. Just don’t be so harsh on yourself and expects things, it makes creativity so much easier.
9. Listen to music
But, listen to music you don’t think will influence you, or get your mind whirring. As musicians and music producers our brains are wired differently. When I’m out shopping and hear something playing, and I like it, I always find myself ignoring the shopping, ignoring whoever I’m with and thinking ‘how’ve they done that?’ or ‘wow, I would love to write a track like this’, then proceeding to write it in my head. It’s easy for us to fall in to this, because it is just what we do naturally.
I tend to listen to hip-hop, or soft jazz or something like that, it gives my head a break from thinking about structure (especially if I’m listening to jazz).
Obviously, if you did all of these things instead of being creative, you would never be creative. Take one of the above essential tools for helping your creativity and take a break from what you’re doing. Spend time relaxing and letting your mind be creative. For some people, it might even be worth figuring out what time of day you are your most productive and creative. For me, this is 5:30 am any morning, until 7:30 if I’m working or 10 am if its a weekend. After hours of stress of a work day, I can’t switch off unless I’ve unleashed the stress somehow.