Every now and then, while working on a project, you’ll reach a point where you’re banging your head against the keyboard. Nothing is working. Creativity has taken a nose dive into the abyss. The client keeps telling you, “That’s not it.” You can’t find the glitch in the code. The colors aren’t right, the story is a hot mess…and you’re wondering why you thought this project was a good idea to begin with.
We’ve all been there, and we’ll end up there again. It happens.
The question is, how do you handle it? Do you keep pushing through the muck or do you get up and walk away? One would think that walking away from a project is quitting. That all depends on how you handle walking away. If you walk away and never come back, then yeah, that’s quitting.
But if you walk away for a breath of fresh air to clear your head, that’s a different story.
The mental blocks come from thinking too hard. You’re so focused on finding that perfect solution, your mind can’t relax. You often don’t see a solution that’s sitting right in front of your face.
Here’s a short list of things to do when you walk away:
- Take a shower (or a soak in the tub, or the pool, or jacuzzi, use what you’ve got! Around here we call this “Shower Power”)
- Wash dishes
- Do laundry
- Clean a room
- Go for a walk/work out
- Take a nap
- Watch a movie
- Read a book
- Brainstorm with a friend or colleague
Some of the side effects are a sparkling sink, Mt. Washmore reduced to nothing, the bed made and you’ll get some exercise. The primary effect is you’re getting your mind off the project. The moment you stop thinking about it is the moment your mind relaxes and the solutions flood in.
Walking away is all about gaining space and affording yourself the silence needed to LISTEN. That little heart-voice is so hard to hear with so much static going on. Once you rid yourself of that static, the heart-voice comes in loud and clear.
Do you already have a system for dealing with project frustration? Tell us about it in the comments!