At some point in your career as a content creator, you may start to worry you’re running out of video ideas. You may feel like your well of creative ideas has run dry or that every good idea has already been done. However, there are steps you can take to recover from this kind of creative burnout and get your creative juices flowing again.
Here’s what to do when you feel like you’re out of video ideas.
Take the time you need to rest and recover.
It’s hard to come up with creative video ideas when you’re both physically and emotionally exhausted. Just because you aren’t working a typical 9-to-5 doesn’t mean you don’t need time off. Just like a squeaky wheel needs oil, every hard working person requires rest to help them perform their best.
Therefore, it’s important that you allow yourself to take time away from work. Batch film and schedule a few easy videos, such as Q-and-As or viral challenges, at once so you don’t have to worry about missing an upload. Alternatively, you can announce that you’re taking a break from your channel for a week or two.
Go through your comments and make a list of videos your viewers want to see.
When you’re ready to return to work, go through some of your viewer feedback. Search your recent video comments, Instagram DMs, and Twitter mentions for video ideas your viewers have shared with you. Write down ones that are super popular or especially interesting.
You might also make a community post asking your viewers what kinds of videos they’d like to see on your channel. Make note of recurring themes, frames, etc. Also, pay attention to the number of likes a comment has, as this is a good indicator of how interesting your viewers find that video.
Make a second list of the videos you’d make if anything was possible.
Then, putting aside your viewers’ ideas for a moment, give yourself a bit of time to daydream. Imagine that you could make any kind of video you wanted, regardless of budgets or time constraints. Write down as many ideas as you want.
Then, go back through the list and break your ideas down to find elements that could be feasible. Maybe you’ve written down a format you haven’t tried before, or maybe you had an idea for a collaboration with a new vlogger friend. You can also reinvent your ideas to be more realistic. For example, while you may not be able to collab with your favorite celebrity, you could probably do a similar collab with an influencer you admire or even a hired impersonator.
Use these lists as a starting point for a brainstorming session.
Take both of your lists and combine them. Refine your new list to include only the ideas that excite you. If you wouldn’t enjoy making it, then your audience probably won’t enjoy watching it, no matter how many times they requested it.
Finally, use this new list as a starting point for your next brainstorming session. Put it away for a few hours or a few days. Then, return to it and go through it again, highlighting your favorite video ideas on the list. Branch new ideas off of those until you’re satisfied.
When you’re a content creator, burnout is a risk of the job. However, you can overcome it by taking the time you need to rest then finding creative ways to brainstorm new ideas.
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Kristen Harris enjoys listening to a wide range of music, from Taylor Swift to, on occasion, Celtic instrumental. She also spends her time writing, reading, and baking.