This blog post is for those of you who have felt a creative itch that couldn’t be satisfied. That itch just might have been the infamous inspiration hump.
I’m talking about that key moment when you know you have something awesome in your hands, and you don’t want to lose it. That’s the hump, and it’s the hardest part for creators.
Why? Because by definition a hump is “the most difficult or dangerous part of something,” and losing that idea is dangerous to achieving your potential. Many creators know that the only thing worse than not having something to create is having a great idea that can’t be grasped.
Ever felt like an idea was clinging to the edges of your very being? Like it was just waiting to pour out of you, but you couldn’t figure out how to channel the flow?
We all get that.
Here’s the big secret: Create right then and there.
No waiting. No wondering what “something like that” would end up sounding like. Or looking like.
Here’s why: The reason why you feel the way you do is because you are receiving inspiration. In real time. For some reason, we have the temptation to think we’re just grasping at ideas when we’re at the hump.
The idea is in you RIGHT NOW, and it’s so much more concrete than you realize. That’s why you feel the way you feel! Trust me, I know, because I’ve been there. Heck, I go there almost every day. And I believe God sometimes inspires us with something that feels good because when we follow through, we find the real thing that’s good at the end of the creative process. He wants us to get over the hump.
So use voice memos. Open up a doc on your computer and start writing. Send yourself an email. Grab a notebook. Get it done.
I’ve been using the Voice Memos and GarageBand apps a lot lately as I’ve worked on my CD. I streamline my ideas into a place that I can return to later for sorting things out. It works like a charm.
One last thought.
You need to understand that there are stages of creation, and one of those stages is the brainstorm stage.
This is when the critic goes bye-bye. So whether you’re writing thoughts on a piece of paper, singing into the phone, or doing something I wish I knew how to do on the computer, you’ve got to show the critic the door before you even start.
I’ve been to songwriter’s conferences in both L.A. and Nashville. I’ve read books on songwriting, done an internship at a marketing agency, and been attentive to what creatives do for years, and guess what everyone has taught me?
Yeah, you guessed it.
This means getting rid of the word “no,” or the phrases “that sounds crazy” and “not realistic.” Dude, this is your dream—go live it! Editing and creating use the same part of your brain, and that’s a problem for us if our critic friend is chillin’ with a Pepsi in hand while we work. Scientifically, you are using too much brain power when you let him in, so he’s crushing good ideas and you’re not achieving potential. That’s just messed up. Tell him to have a soda with someone else. . . like in the Himalayas. With nobody. Cuz he’s an idiot.
So there you have it. Get over the inspiration hump.
Thoughts? I’d love to hear them!