How to get in inspiration mode

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When you have made the transition from making and creating as a hobby into something you get paid for, i.e. a business, there’s suddenly a different kind of pressure on you. You need to produce new work to show that you develop, and for that new work you need inspiration.

Getting inspired is probably one of the things you do easily when you’re on a roll. One thing leads to another, one idea spurs and feeds the next. But there are other times when inspiration and ideas don’t flow so well.


When was the last time you told yourself you would wait for the inspiration to come, or that your best ideas come when you’re under pressure?

While this is a very common way of working – it’s not ideal. It puts you under a lot of pressure, and relying on last minute inspiration isn’t satisfactory for you or the people you work with ( here I’m talking about the people exhibiting or buying your work).

So, today I’m going to talk to you about a way you can get yourself into inspiration mode, without having to wait for the last minute to arrive – with or without inspiration.

It’s what I call the ‘inspication’ method. It’s a combination of inspiration and vacation, a process to tease your brain into thinking you’re going on vacation, so it can relax and leave room for inspiration.

Let me explain:
When we go on vacation, we allow ourselves to let go. Let go of work, responsibilities, structure and worries. We let go to have fun, and let ourselves enjoy the moments. We become more open to discovering new things and cultures, and when we’re in that mode, we get inspired easily.

Giving your brain a break from being creative could actually spark even more great ideas and inspiration. (tweet this)

Here’s how you can do this – even without actually going on a vacation, which means you can use this any time you need some inspiring ideas.


Getting in inspiration mode

1. Preparation for ‘inspication’

Prepare yourself, your business and others so you can have a relaxed period away without thinking about things at home (bills, emails, projects etc). This means finishing things up, setting up an auto email reply*, get everything immediate out of the way, so you free up some time to focus on being open to inspiration.

*if you like using those, make sure it’s personal and not one of those ‘out of office’ standard ones, please! If I have written you an email, I want to know what you’re doing ‘out of office’ especially if it’s as intriguing as being on an inspication. Telling what you’re doing could spark more interest, conversation and engagement with a potential client and is a very smart way of creative marketing – note to self: maybe write a post about this.

2. Go somewhere

Only you don’t have to go anywhere, you can stay home, work in another room if you like, or go outside. Being in a different location is going to help though, so if you find it difficult staying in your workshop or office – ask if you can swap with someone else, go to a café – be creative and find another location. Changing your scenery is going to help that process of letting go and opening up to inspiration.

3. Explore

Arrived at your destination, you’re relaxed – now go explore your surroundings.
Go be a tourist in your own city, look at your daily surroundings as if it was the first time you were there. Go visit the museum, the attractions, the place all the ‘real’ tourists go to and see what happens. Bring your camera. Look for patters, textures, constructions – let yourself be inspired.
By seeing and experiencing things as if it was for the first time – without judgement and really noticing – is the exact same mode you’ll find inspiration in.

You can do this for just an afternoon, a day or set aside a week or more – it doesn’t matter how long time your have, just that you are willing to be open.

Now, I would love to hear from you in the comments below. What do you do to spark inspiration when you need it on command?