We all wake up each day with great ideas and goals we wish to achieve, but sometimes roadblocks prevent us from moving forward. It happens all the time; files are accidentally deleted, you’re missing an ingredient, or you forget something at home. Hitting a “roadblock” may bring us to a halt, but it forces us to think creatively to find another way to solve the problem. Creative thinking can be applied to many aspects of your life, all you need to do is take a step back and embrace the situation.
When you realize you’re running into an issue that is effecting your productivity, the first thing you need to do is take a breath and stay calm; overreacting won’t help. Stay positive and ask yourself what truly needs to be done and when the deadline is. Begin thinking of different ways to solve your problem. Though not ideal, there are usually multiple options to choose from (sometimes you’ll really need to think out of the box to find a solution). Weigh the pros and cons of each alternative and finally narrow it down to the best choice. Here are a few of my recent examples:
When I was re-designing this blog last month, I had an extremely long to-do list which left me permanently stressed. One of my final tasks was to photograph a few graphics for my About page and the upcoming posts. The first issue I ran into was that my current camera lens was not taking the quality photos I’d hoped for. (I disliked these photos so much that I ended up deleting any for reference, sorry!) I was pretty aggravated but realized the solution was to look into a better lens. After doing some research I ordered a new camera lens and was told it would be ready to pick up in 3 short days. I planned the rest of my week around the day I would receive my new lens, so when I was told it was backordered for another week, I was furious. To avoid a mental breakdown, I took a step back and looked at my other options. I could either rent a camera from a local shop OR invest in stock photography. As you can see above, I went with the latter.
Once I finally received my new camera lens and became comfortable with my photographs, I was able to create content at a much more productive rate. As I began setting up products for my Top 5 Tea Varieties post, I already knew that the pictures wouldn’t come out as I originally envisioned. It was back to the drawing board, but the solution wasn’t simple since I already had everything I needed. So, I asked myself “what other creative ways can I showcase these products?” I started sketching out some ideas and the new concepts quickly came to me; the before and after can be seen below.
Many people don’t realize the creativity it takes to make due with the resources you have and figuring out alternative ways to get things done. I honestly run into these issues every day with my design work, but I’ve come to appreciate the process as it helps me grow. So, next time your flash drive is ejected incorrectly and all of your files are deleted, remember to think creatively and find another way to achieve your original goal.
How do you remain calm under pressure and stay on track?