The dreaded scrapbooking slump: sometimes we feel overwhelmed; sometimes we feel underwhelmed.
Too many products. Too many photos. Too many things to scrapbook. Too many ideas from Pinterest. Too little time to make everything.
Not inspired. Not feeling creative. Not satisfied with your pages. Not sure if you ever want to scrapbook again.
So how do we get through it? And what happens if that scrapbooking slump lasts for weeks? Or years?
My scrapbooking slump lasted 3 years. It was not simply a lack of creative motivation; it was total burn out. These first few suggestions are to get you through that long-term slump until you’re ready to start scrapbooking again – and hopefully lead you back to that point. For short-term scrapper’s block, I’ve also included some creativity boosters at the end.
1. Stop Feeling Guilty.
Nothing bad is going to happen if you don’t scrapbook today. Or tomorrow. Or all year.
Your photos are not going to self-destruct if they’re not put into a scrapbook album within a week. Your children are not going require therapy because you didn’t produce 158 volumes of their childhood memories.
Don’t worry about getting “caught up,” either. We can never truly be caught up because life is always happening. It’s okay to have some time gaps in your scrapbooks.
And then there’s the scrapbooking stash: a major source of scrapbooker’s guilt. If your stash is getting you down, it might be time for purging.
Let go of the guilt and pressure to scrapbook. No matter how long it’s been since you’ve scrapbooked, you can always start from this point forward.
2. Purge & Organize.
Organize your scrapbooking supplies and straighen up your scrapbook area. Sometimes messy areas make us feel overwhelmed and uncreative; a clean space is happy and inviting.
If and when you’re ready to purge, try the “shop your stash” method: imagine you have no scrapbook supplies, and your scrapbooking stash is the store. What will you pick out? Whatever remains is what you should probably donate. If you’re worried about possibly needing the purged supplies later, try boxing them up and storing them in a closet. If you ever actually need one of the supplies, you still have it. If not, then maybe you don’t need that stuff after all. See The Scrapbook Diet for details on how I got rid of most of my supplies.
Organize photos on your computer. Add notes, group by event, delete the accidental blurry shots of your foot. Organize prints as well.
Organize your mementos and kids’ school papers. See Organizing Memorabilia for some ideas.
When you’re ready to scrapbook again, your stuff will be ready, too.
3. Keep Writing.
Keep writing down those funny things your children say, or notes about a recent vacation. Make notes in a Word document or an app or an actual journal.
No matter how long your scrapbooking slump lasts, keep writing.
When you’re ready to scrapbook again, you’ll be glad you have those notes.
4. Try a Different Creative Outlet.
Painting, drawing, knitting, quilting, jewelry making. Revisit a craft you once enjoyed or try something new.
Or focus on something that will directly benefit your scrapbooking: take a photography class, practice your handwriting, learn Photoshop.
Exploring other creative outlets might lead you back to scrapbooking.
5. MAKE Memories.
Go on a trip. Play a game with your children. Take a walk. Do something other than focusing on your scrapbooking slump. It’s okay to have fun and not make a scrapbook page about it.
(Yes. The answer is yes.)
Enjoying an activity without the “pressure” of scrapbooking it might just be the scrapbooking boost you need.
6. Start Scrapbooking.
Maybe it’s time to get back on the horse, so to speak. Write Click Scrapbook has great suggestions for getting out of a creative rut, such as “don’t compare yourself to other people” and “stop consuming and start creating.” Translation = get off Pinterest and scrapbook. (Oh, look – they have “let go of guilt” on their list, too. Why are scrapbookers such a guilty bunch?).
Also consider that it might be time for a change. Our personal style changes over time, right? It seems logical that our scrapbooking style would change, too. (Although lately my personal style has deteriorated into What Not To Wear territory, so perhaps this isn’t the best analogy).
Strategies for Combating Scrapper’s Block – Part 1 (Your Memory Connection)
Strategies for Combating Scrapper’s Block – Part 2 (Your Memory Connection)
7 Ways to Beat Scrapper’s Block (Simply Kelly Designs Blog)
13 Inspiring Tips for When You’re in a Creative Rut (99 Designs Blog)
7 Ways to Get Out of a Creative Rut (Psych Central)
12 Paths to Help You Emerge from a Creative Slump (Art Biz Blog)
We all go through scrapbooking slumps, so don’t worry about it. It’s just what happens when you’re creative and awesome. <— pep talk.