It can be easy as a business owner who relies heavily on creativity to reach burnout, to be short on inspiration and especially to forget yourself. When this happens things can feel like they are quickly spiraling out of control and to our followers and clients it can appear confusing. The best thing an artist can do for yourself is to know who you are very well. While I realize it can be a long journey to know ourselves I have found several things to be helpful to staying inspired while working in the creative industry.
Take a personality test to better understand yourself.
The Myers-Briggs and other personality tests can be incredibly helpful in understanding yourself and vital to the health and wellness of your creativity and business. Pablo Picasso famously said to "know the rules like a Pro, so you can break them like an artist." If we don't know the rules then we surely won't know how to go beyond them as artists, and even more so this applies to our personalities. If we do not understand our tendencies and what it is that we do naturally then we will not understand how to move to the next place in our businesses. For example: I am an ENFP who by definition - gets extremely excited about new ideas and the world around me. Knowing this illuminated that I need to be around DIFFERENT kinds of projects. I started to look for opportunities to shoot people, events and concepts outside of my speciality, so that I will continue to be challenged and excited about what I do. Since I started saying yes to a few things outside of weddings I have seen my creativity during a wedding day expand and my skills increase twofold.
Ask yourself WHY and ask it frequently. Learn to live from the inside - out.
One of the biggest disservices we can do for our businesses is to not know why we are doing WHAT we are doing. For a long time I didn't know why certain aspects of photography inspired me until I started noticing why I was so alive or so drained after certain kinds of photoshoots. If you want to avoid being burned out quickly find out what makes you feel alive and what drains you. THEN go to the next level and start asking why you are doing your various day to day tasks. You will soon find a lot of things you are doing don't have a point. Find better ways that YOU work so you can experience freedom, efficiency and be more decisive about what works and doesn't work.
Spend quality time with others in AND outside of your field.
If all we creatives do is spend time with one another in similar lines of work everything will start to look and sound homogenous. I spend a lot of time with family and friends who aren't in similar places of life, business or anywhere near my age and it always challenges and breathes life into me. Conferences, networking, industry friends...they are necessities just as much as these other relationships! I treasure my non-photography friends for their variety in life, wisdom and ability to speak into my life with an outside perspective.