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6 Reasons You Sh-

Wait, no. Maybe, how to be-

No, I don’t like that either. What about why you should-

No, no, no, I don’t like it.

There are currently three unfinished articles chilling in my Drive but I just can’t find it in me to finish them. Every time I open up my laptop to write an article, I can’t write more than 50 words. This frustrating feeling is a creative block. 

Creative blocks are natural, you can’t be spitting out content every day. Quality over quantity, always. It used to frustrate me A LOT when I couldn’t think of something creative to create. I’ve spent days at my desk just sitting there trying to force myself to think of something creative, but that’s not how things work. 

When looking at why people experience creative blocks, one of the main reasons is the fear of imperfection. We’re all our own harshest critics, we want to create things that are quite literally perfect. The truth is, there’s no such thing as perfection. Perfection is what you want it to be, and it’s different for anyone. My idea of perfection is drastically different from yours. Creators in particular are very self-critical because they’re aware of the mistakes they made throughout the process of creating their piece. What most artists fail to realize is that no one but themselves is able to identify those mistakes, so to the general audience, your work is perfect. 

Other than the fear of imperfection, there’s also the fear of criticism. This is my biggest fear, but I wouldn’t say I’m afraid of people giving me constructive criticism. I’m afraid of people giving me destructive criticism. So what I’m really starting to understand is that we’re not really afraid of being told that something is not good, we’re afraid of who says it and how they say it. Getting over the fear of criticism is hard but it’s important to remember that just because one person says your work isn’t good, doesn’t mean they’re right. If you’re proud of what you created, that’s all that matters. You created that piece for yourself and sharing it with others is just a bonus. So don’t leave your work in your drafts because of some hypothetical response you think people are going to have to it. 

Sometimes a creative block is not so much these other factors, but rather the simple lack of a creative idea. Although it used to cause me frustration, I now embrace it as a time to relax. As creatives, we’re constantly in our heads, thinking and trying to come up with new content. Regardless of what anyone says, it is very exhausting and you NEED to take a break even if it’s not because of a creative block. So take this as a sign to step back from your art if you’re finding it hard to come up with new ideas. You’re not leaving it forever, it’s just a small break to clear your head. Who knows, maybe you’ll even find inspiration for your next great project during that break. 

Thamilini Balakumar is a Global Business and Digital Arts student at the University of Waterloo. She has a passion for creative writing and storytelling. In addition to writing, she tells stories through her photography and videography.
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