You can’t just turn the internal tap on and suddenly become inspired. It’s got to come from somewhere. There are many reasons why inspiration can dry out, from feeling too much stress to getting too comfortable.
When you’ve got that fire in your belly though, you feel like there’s nothing that can get in the way of achieving your dreams. So how can you recapture this feeling?
Here are 5 tips to reboot your music career and find inspiration again.
1. Listen To Other Genres Of Music
Everyone has their favorite sound, but it can start to sound the same if it’s the only thing you listen to. Put aside your preconceptions about certain genres and just listen to it honestly. It can give you that creative boost you’ve been seeking and new ideas so you can put into your own music.
Different genres tap into different emotions. There may be different chord progressions that set something off inside you, or the change in beat may spark a new idea.
The key is to really think deeply about what you’re listening to. Don’t judge anything you would consider different to your tastes – they can make a real difference.
2. Switch Instruments
This follows on well from the first point. If your inspiration has dried up, take a page from the legends and consider instruments.
Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys is a great example of this. He told Annie Mac on Radio One, “The guitar had lost its ability to give me ideas. Every time I sat with a guitar I was suspicious of where it was gonna go. I had a pretty good idea of what I might be which is completely contrary to what I felt when I sat at the piano.”
Even Sir Paul McCartney switched from the guitar to the bass; Dave Grohl went from the drums to the lead guitar and vocals. It can be done and bring a whole new dimension to your inner creativity.
It doesn’t have to be a permanent change. You may wish to just pick up a new instrument for just a few hours but it’ll help get you out of that rut and thinking about music in a whole other way.
3. Get Visual Inspiration
Kanye West, Pharrell Williams, Lorde – what do all they have in common? Yes, they’re all very musically talented, but they also have incredible vision to see the music. Only a handful of people have this ability but the majority that do are creative artists.
Billie Eilish is another example. She told YouTube Music, “I think visually first with everything I do, and also I have synesthesia, so everything that I make I’m already thinking of what colour it is, and what texture it is, and what day of the week it is, and what number it is, and what shape.”
Now, having this natural ability is certainly going to help, but of course not everyone is blessed with this ability. But if you’re looking to reboot your music career, you can prompt yourself to do it as a creative exercise. Try and figure out your own unique connection between your music and its visual interpretation. For example, does it sound like a particular color? What does it look like? Can you describe it to someone else?
On the other hand, you could think about using some visual prompts to get all those creative juices flowing, from images of the open ocean to the abstract landscape of a dystopian future. Whatever works for you.
4. Consider Taking CBD Oil
There are many benefits to taking CBD oil, but one of the most important for a musician whose inspiration has dried out is that it can help you rediscover your creativity. To get into the science for a moment, the reason why is because it increases blood flow to the frontal lobe in the brain.
Why does this matter? Well, it’s been found that people with increased blood flow to this region experienced higher creativity. The frontal lobe is activated by pursuits that encourage problem-solving, planning and creativity.
But it doesn’t stop there. Those other benefits mentioned just a moment ago have indirect benefits on a musician to help promote creative thinking. In fact, it could be argued that these indirect effects may be even more beneficial.
For example, distress and discomfort are creativity killers, but according to CBD Kyro, CBD can relieve these feelings of stress and anxiety.
Of course, it goes without saying that if this was something you consider, make sure you only use high-quality CBD. Daily CBD Magazine has created a great resource for some of the best CBD oils on the market so you avoid falling into this pitfall.
5. Don’t Be Too Serious
The more you think about not being creative enough right now, the more likely that it’s not going to happen. Inspiration comes naturally, it cannot be forced. The same goes with music; if you’re not enjoying it, it’s not going to sound good.
And what’s the point anyway if you’re not enjoying it, right? Putting too much pressure on yourself will only serve to keep you frustrated and prevent you from experimenting with new things, both of which are vital for creativity.
Find ways you can relieve yourself of the pressure and reconnect with the person you were when you first started making music. What made you get into it in the first place? What do you enjoy most? As Guy Garvey from Elbow would say, if it’s all getting a bit too much, it’s just a song.
These five tips can help you to reboot your music career if you’re lacking inspiration right now. No matter which one you use, the most important thing is to know that this is just a blip. You haven’t lost your ability to write, record, and make music. It’s just another hurdle that you must overcome to get to where you want to be.