7 Ways You Can Beat Creative Block

7 Ways You Can Beat Creative Block this Snail-Paced summer

So many things seem to slow down in the summer: The pace of life, demands from work (if you're lucky), and inner desires to amp up productivity. I remember visiting Taiwan in the uncomfortably hot and humid summers, when my glasses would literally fog up when I walked outside and I would just wanna sit in a cool pool and do nothing. So maybe it's the heat. Or our year-long burnout that finally has a chance to take a breather. Or the sunny blue-skied weather that naturally puts us into vacay mode.

But just because life may be slower than usual doesn't mean your creativity has to be. In fact, it might even give you more headspace and time to let your imaginations run wild!

If you're hoping to let your creativity juices flow while all else stays slow, check out these 7 tips below:

1. Opt outside Alone

Oh, the great outdoors. So many of my own lightbulb moments come from when I walk my dog by this beach park in Southern California, where I get to look out onto expansive oceans, go earthing on fresh grass, and take in the naturally purified air. Solitude automatically shifts us into self-talk and self-reflection mode, and the grounding rhythms of our foot steps invite creativity to flow.

Whenever you feel stuck, find some time to explore the parks or wilderness near you, and give yourself that much-needed quiet space to lure out your inner genius.

2. Go On GMCO Dates

You know how they say "GMTA," or "Great Minds Think Alike"? Of course, I've used this phrase before. But I do challenge it. Confirmation bias -- when we tend to pick up on things we agree with while subconsciously dismissing ideas that we don't believe in -- is so real. And despite me being conscious of this, it's still so hard to work around! But I know I have to, because when I only stick around people that think the exact way I do and know more or less the same things I know, I don't learn much. And it just makes me more narrow-minded and rigid in my ways. No good.

On the other hand, I've realized that differences are what challenge me to go further and dig deeper. For example, while it's flattering for my self-confidence when people sing praises to me, constructive criticism is what teaches me something new about myself and my work. And while it's reassuring when others validate my ideas, seeing people's unique viewpoints is what pushes me to think outside my box.

Do you feel the same, too? I know it's more comforting to chill with people who just get you. But for your self-growth and creativity, hang out with someone who challenges you this summer. Or someone who inspires you. Or even somebody who you don't get along with, because that's a sign you guys have deep differences that you can learn from! And try to go openminded, not to be understood, but to understand. Not focused on preaching or converting, but on learning and questioning what you know to be true.

It's about YOU and how you can broaden your lenses to see farther and gain profound revelations.

Oh, and the GMCO stands for "Great Minds Challenge Others."

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