I find that the best way to start tackling an issue is to create a challenge for myself. It doesn’t even have to be related to content itself, but in finding a way to incorporate that element, you start to see other requirements for the course.
In one course, I wanted to build a choose-your-own-adventure type scenario. In figuring out a way to build up to that scenario, I unconsciously began implementing the design for the entire course.
Is there any way you could hide the irrelevant content behind clickables (a small click-to-reveal somewhere on the page) or in a “resource” section? So that it is still there and you keep the SME happy without threatening the design and flow of the course?
If I am stuck or not inspired, typically I’ll start doing some research. I might Google about a topic, looking for text, images, sounds, etc. to try to inspire me or help my brain make connections. Just the words I use to look up information might inspire me to look at a topic in a new way or from a different perspective.
One of my problems, as an Instructional Designer, has to do with approval process and a top down leadership protocol. To get scripts and storyboards approved can take time and slow down a project in months when vacations are at their peak. I guess that is more of a PM issue, but I do both.
When I first started out I didn’t really understand the whole “Instructional Designers wear many hats”. Oh boy did that change! Development, PM, LMS Admin, Video Producer, Graphic Designer…..I’m probably missing a couple but you know what I mean!