where to find inspiration

How to find inspiration

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where to find inspiration

The blank page syndrome. The burnout moment. The empty mind feeling. Everybody, but specially those of us who work in a creative field have experienced it. Even the student during the long hours before an exam has this thought: I don’t feel like it.

And you know that it’s quite difficult to be productive when you are not feeling it right? But you know you have to do it and start as soon as possible. How can we move on from that pain and do the work?

“A blank page is no empty space. It is brimming with potential… It is a masterpiece in waiting — yours.”
A.A. Patawaran, Write Here Write Now: Standing at Attention Before My Imaginary Style Dictator

Smart procrastination. That’s my answer and my method. Well, prior to that I would try to do something else that is equally urgent or important. When that doesn’t work, I decide I will have a good time and start working in a different way.

“By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The non-existent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.”— Nikos Kazantzakis

Let’s imagine I need to do an illustration. I don’t know where to start. I should have a concept, and I may have one, but it’s not talking to me, I’m not visualizing the painting yet.

So, what do I do?

1- I keep a folder full of images that I collect for future reference or inspiration. Things I would like to draw, inspiring pictures or others’ illustrations and paintings that I like. Going through all of my favorites could help me get a clear image of what I’d like my illustration to look like, choose a palette I want to try or just convey a feeling I want to incorporate to the piece.

2 – Option two: use Pinterest. Not in an endless search for something without even knowing what I’m looking for, but just to look through all of my boards and see if there’s a theme that I haven’t tried yet or maybe let the lifestyle of my choice inspire the real me. One that I would specially recommend is (having and) checking your dreams’ board. That will probably be more powerful and bring you some creative energy that you could use to start the work.

3 – If nothing has worked so far (which would be rare, I usually would use just one of all these items) I visit a very dangerous place: Instagram. However, I’m not talking about refreshing endlessly the feed or go stalk your favorite artists; I’m just talking about using your likes and saved instas to get you back to a moment you felt inspired. Because I will usually save a picture when it tells me a story or makes me feel a special something which I know may be useful my future uninspired me.

4 – Similar to the previous one, I often take screenshots of things I like or things I could use in the future. It’s also a good moment to check them. I must confess I usually forget about them so they sometimes are, at the least, a surprise.

5- Have you been too hard on yourself? Then it’s time to go over the old photos of travels and let my your life (and gratitude for it) be your inspiration. In the same way, I may revise my old sketches. That’s wonderful, because there might be an old drawing there deserving of some improvement.

“A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man’s brow.”— Charles Brower

A writing problem

If it’s too hard to craft a new post, there’s hope too.

1 – Take an old post of yours and see what’s missing. Could that become a new post?

2 – I have this wonderful app called Keep, by Google, in which I jot down any idea I get at any time. When you are experiencing a block, it’s a great time to go check it.

3 – Stop and reflect. What has been going on in your life? Or to the people around you? Could something of that be transferred to your blog? What story could you tell and link to your theme? Asking questions is always a good way to start.What strategies do you have to get inspiration or dropping aside procrastination?

To know more about my process, read this post.

For books on creativity read this one.

For more resources go to Resources.


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Books for the girl boss – UPDATE

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girl boss books

Do you remember my last post about books? Well, it’s this one .

So maybe it’s time to update you on my reading list.

I’ll start with the books I haven’t finished reading yet.

My so-called freelance life

 It’s a wonderful guide for the wannabe freelancer that has never been in that situation before, is starting now or in need of a bit of help. There’s plenty of good and practical advice. I haven’t been through it all though because I feel like I already know the theory and I don’t need to go over it (again). In my case, I should be working the path instead of informing myself. But if you’re considering going freelance, this book could be the prefect reading for you.

Design is my job

I only started it. It is nice but it’s not a great guide like the one above. It gives you the author’s advice on everything he considers necessary. And even though I appreciate the tone of it, very close to the reader, it won’t help me feel good about my job…so I said Next!

The Power

I’m 30 pages away from the end. It’s a good read to start feeling better about your life and spreading the love. A read I’d recommend. But I must add, I’ve been working on The Magic book for the last month too. And it is incredibly good. If you liked The Secret I would totally recommend it. It’s a great way to really put some gratitude into your daily life, with daily exercises. And it’s awesome how it really works. 

Also, if that’s not enough and you liked everything about The Secret, I would also recommend you the book “The Science of Getting Rich”, which is the one that Rhonda received and inspired all The Secret series. It’s a very short read, you can find it free online (because it’s 100 years old!) and gets you to the point in a straightforward way. I’ll be rereading it, for sure!

Books that I did finish reading

Girl code

I had a bit of trouble getting hooked by this book at first, because I couldn’t align with the author’s voice or tone at first. But as I got further I started liking it more and more. It may not become my favourite book but it is inspirational and motivational for all women in business and will empower your dreams (which I’ll always be grateful for). Let me show you some of my favourite quotes – the ones that speak the most to me.

“You must find the place inside of you where everything is possible.”

“You must envision your world through the eyes of positivity and possibility. The moment you do that, you open up a world of endless abundance.”

“Her success is not your failure.”

Leave your mark

As I told you in the previous post, I skipped the first part, because it was mostly about how to get a job. Now, the social media chapters and branding are good stuff. It’s a nice read because it feels like a different way to learn about what to do and what not to do on social media, along with some stories and advice. Who knew it that it could be so entertaining and helpful!

Want more books for the girl boss in you?

Find more on my pinterest board here.

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