4 Ways To Get Out of Your Songwriting Comfort Zone

Most songwriters find themselves in a complacent “comfort zone” from time to time.  Personally, I find myself at times resting on a little plateau of my own making.  I work really hard for a stretch and then I coast for a bit.  When I find myself coasting, here are some things I do to challenge myself out of the comfort zone and back into active progress with my writing.

Shake up the calendar.

Sometimes I’m complacent because I’m writing ONLY with people I’m super comfortable with.  Truth be told, it’s easy to coast when you write with people you are comfortable with.  I find myself digging a little deeper to prepare when I write with someone new.  So, I try to make sure I’m always adding new people to my calendar.

Try writing something outside of your typical box.

If you always co-write, write something alone.  If you always write alone, try a co-write.  Try writing to a funky drum loop.  Write a topic that you’ve never written before. Try writing from the perspective of the opposite gender.

Write in a different place.

It’s easy to get in the comfort zone in your cozy little basement studio with the lava lamp and beanbag chair.  Mix that up and find other places to write.  Sometimes I find writing outdoors to be inspiring.  Other times, I write on a co-writer’s patio.  Changing up where I write helps me get out of the comfort zone.

Take a little time off to just work on ideas.

Every now and then I open up my hook database and nothing there is inspiring me.  That tells me I’ve gotten too comfortable and haven’t been working hard enough to find great ideas.  So, I take a day off just to look for great titles to write.

Whenever you find yourself in the songwriting comfort zone, try these four ideas to help shake things up and get you back on track!

Marty Dodson

Marty Dodson - pro songwriter/instructor - SongTown

SongTown Co-Founder

Hit Songwriter/Author/Lover of Life

8 thoughts on “4 Ways To Get Out of Your Songwriting Comfort Zone

  1. Once when I was stuck for ideas a songwriting and feeling a little stale I went to different Neighbors in my neighborhood, called friends and ask family members to give me a title. I said what title. I said it doesn’t matter just say anything, first thing that comes to your mind. From that little exercise and asking other people for the titles and ideas I wrote 10 songs.

  2. Good blog and great tips, thanks. I find that some of my best ideas come when I’m walking or driving and I DON’T put in earbuds to listen to music or talk. Having that silence to think and keeping my eyes and ears open allows the words and phrases to come floating into a space where I can play with them and put them in order. Sometimes we have to turn off to tune in, so to speak.

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