shutterstock_197018786It’s time to stroll down memory lane—it’s a short stroll, I promise, and I’ll have you back at work quickly.

How often do you take the time to revisit your past marketing projects? Like that blog entry you wrote a few years ago that achieved third-party validation in the form of an accolade. Or the email drip campaign you conceptualized just three months ago that’s already resulting in a record-breaking number of email opens.

I just took a stroll myself. Three years ago—after apparently feeling very forlorn from making the decision to abandon my BlackBerry for a Droid smartphone—I put pen to paper and crafted an article titled “An Ode to the BlackBerry User” (click here to visit my pit stop down memory lane). I remember feeling proud of the article at the time: pleased that I had found a witty analogy in likening my BlackBerry-to-Droid journey to the seven stages of grief and content in how I was able to weave a personal narrative through a technology-based op-ed piece.

It got me thinking, albeit three years later, about how while we’re quick to consult other blogs, emails, white papers and webinars for motivation to push ourselves creatively, why don’t we take the same approach and revisit our personal work as well?

Sometimes there is no greater motivator than recalling a personal past win. It reminds us that there was a previous time when our ingenuity was at an all-time high, when we surpassed what we believed to be our highest potential, and when we stretched to new creative heights.

Try that exercise for a minute.

Think of the last big win you had. Maybe it was the time you received that promotion or your new logo design was chosen amongst a sea of suggestions. Feeling motivated to bask in that glory again?

If you’re finding yourself stuck right now—trying desperately to come up with a killer email subject line or webinar topic, for example—keep the following in mind as you stroll down memory lane:

  • Find a Past Win: Locate a previous body of work that represents you at your best. Read and review it with fresh eyes and be cognizant of how the work makes you feel.
  • Determine Why it Worked: Is this a win because the language is particularly pithy and pointed? Is it successful because it pushed the envelope? Why do you revisit this piece fondly, no matter how much time has gone by?
  • Apply Newfound Perspective: Now that you are once again armed with ideas and direction, re-examine your existing piece of work. Is there anything you can do differently to give it that “wow” feel? Can you change your frame of mind to be able to better tackle this project?

Moments of marketing genius don’t have to be fleeting. But to accomplish this, we as professionals have to be willing to step away from the daily grind, re-center our creative mindset and be willing to have those sparks of inspiration more regularly.

Oftentimes, these moments of genius are fleeting because they consume a considerable amount of our attention, bandwidth and mental energy. But if we simply make this notion of “genius”—and how to achieve it—a regular part of our jobs, we may find that lightning can indeed strike the same place twice.

Now…back to that project…