In the shot above I just photographed the shadow of a man walking down the steps. So there is no real person in the shot, but the shadow tells a story that looks even more interesting. This is just one example of how you can play with your with a scene.
And sometime a backyard can help us seeing mankind from a philosophical standpoint ;-)
Try to think a bit out of the box...or just forget what your have learned!
It is hard to unlearn things but after a while your photographic style (composition, exposure, lens etc.) will become daily routine. And then you might eventually miss a great shot or loose interest because it is becoming boring. To avoid that I suggest to do some exercises to unlearn things and break out of the daily routine. I know that many photographers say that your should always word with the same focal length etc. to stay focused and consistent. I personally love to switch things and try something new from time to time to avoid boredom and try to make a glimpse out of the traditional box. And it could be also a question of your type of personality.
Maybe you need a little break from your routine and the perfect time to start with it is today!