In the realm of creative work, the process can sometimes be an ebb and flow. In other words, it’s not unusual to get stuck once in a while. Unlike analytical or quantitative work, where the key to productivity is focused execution and prioritization, creative work requires inspiration. So what happens when the inspiration runs dry?
For seasoned creatives, summoning the right muses to get out of a funk is akin to an art form. But even then, a little external assistance never hurt anyone. If you’re still mastering the art, here are 7 podcasts to check out for inspiration if you need some help moving past that creator’s block.
Inspiring podcasts to spark creativity and motivation
Ted Radio Hour
If you’ve ever found yourself immersed in TED talk after TED talk, TED Radio Hour is exactly your cup of tea. A partnership between TED and National Public Radio, this weekly podcast explores ideas, inventions, and “new ways to think and create.” A classic that has something for everyone, TED Radio Hour is a great place to start if you’re unsure what you want to listen to when you need a dose of inspiration. The host takes you through big ideas via a series of condensed TED talks and interviews with the great thinkers of the world.
Standout episode(s): “The money paradox” and “Failure is an option”
Creative Pep Talk
Featuring daily episodes, the Creative Pep Talk podcast is perfect for a bit of regular motivation. This particular show does an incredible job at bridging the gap between business and creativity. The interviews and monologs are filled with performance hacks, marketing tactics, and savvy business advice that can help take your creative career to the next level. If your creative block is rooted in feeling stuck or a general lack of progression, Creative Pep Talk is a great option to help get those gears turning.
Standout episode(s): “6 tactics to routinely unlock your best creative self”
Going back as far as 2005, Design Matters is one of the oldest podcasts focused on design and creativity. Combining top-notch interviewing skills with incredibly talented guests, (all successful and renowned in their own right) Design Matters has the perfect recipe for anyone looking for inspiration. A particularly great episode is the one featuring Tosh Hall, who talks about his journey going from a personal low point to being named one of AdAge’s Top 50 creatives. With over 400 episodes to date, there is no shortage of insights and content to choose from when you hit a creative roadblock.
Standout episode(s): “Tosh Hall”
The Accidental Creative
Another podcast that has sparked plenty of mental stimulation for over a decade, The Accidental Creative is a great resource for anyone looking for actionable tips. Featuring a blend of both interviews and general wisdom, the show is particularly effective at dishing out advice for pushing past your own individual limitations. This is a great option for anyone looking for insight on how to consistently produce without sacrificing creativity.
Standout episode(s): “6 tips for dealing with creative burnout”
The creative process is a beast in and of itself. Creative Conversation dives deep into the nuts and bolts of the process, breaking down all the frustrating pain points that typically come up in creative work. Not sure where to start? Try the episode with ‘Quinta Brunson on finding creativity past viral moments’. Hosted by Fast Company editor and writer, KC Ifeanyi, the podcast features conversations with some of the most creative minds in film, television, business, and more. A great and poignant option for anyone looking to “hack” their way out of that creative block.
Standout episode(s): “Quinta Brunson on finding creativity past viral moments”
No matter what type of creative you are, Beautiful Anarchy is a gem of a podcast with easy-to-digest, bite-sized episodes that are generally only 10-15 minutes long. Thought-provoking, incredibly raw, and candid, this podcast explores the everyday ups and downs of what it means to be a creator. It’s as entertaining as it is intelligent, making this pod perfect for anyone who is determined to push past the creative struggle but has trouble committing to hour-long shows.
Standout episode(s): “Balance, boredom, & burnout”
Kick in the Creatives
Habits can be your friend or your biggest enemy, especially when it comes to the creative process. Kick in the Creatives is a podcast that focuses on building solid habits so that creatives can spend more time actually creating. The episodes dissect common problems that plague artists and writers in addition to in-depth interviews with inspirational creators such as children’s illustrator and cartoonist, Chris Riddell. The best part? Kick in the Creatives comes with a thriving Facebook community for anyone who really needs the extra motivation to get back on the horse.
Standout episode(s): “Ep 72 creative chat with children’s illustrator and political cartoonist Chris Riddell”
The bottom line
Whether that dreaded creator’s block is something you regularly embrace as part of your process or an unwelcome funk that you can’t wait to shake, even the most successful creatives find themselves in need of inspiration every once in a while. Podcasts are a great way to take a step back and welcome new perspectives into your mental headspace. It’s a passive way of resetting and searching for inspiration. No matter what your craft is, check out one of our suggested podcasts the next time you need a little boost to get the creative juices flowing.