I have only been blogging less than 4 months – it’ll be four months on August 14th! and I have already hit what’s known as writer’s block in blogging circles! Some of you might be laughing but its true if you do not know what your blog is going to be about. I am passionate about improving life skills and that’s what I like to write about. So how can one come to a total standstill in thoughts on personal development? There is so much I want to share on what has worked for me and what hasn’t. And I am working on improving many areas of my life on a daily basis, so how could I not have anything to say?
Every time I sat down to write that post, I started staring at the blank page and although I felt like there was something I wanted to write, I could not get started. So you know what I did? I browsed the Internet for good four hours. I read a whole lot of good articles. I also read Seth Godin….one amongst many of my favorite writers. And in his archives, I came across the following post …
"Make something happen today, before you go home, before the end of the week. Launch that idea, post that post, run that ad, call that customer. Go the edge, that edge you’ve been holding back from… and do it today. Without waiting for the committee or your boss or the market. Just go."
And that was it. I immediately felt I got what I needed. Don’t think about it, just do what you are supposed to do. Seth is usually talking about marketing, but as he mentions in his statement here, its applicable to just about everything in life. Its about making a decision and then sticking with it.
And this post is the result of that one statement. I also did some other things after reading this advice though. Like immediately after reading it, I completely logged out of StumbleUpon, Pownce, and even MyBlogLog. Then logged out of my mail, Google reader and completely closed the Internet. Got up and went straight to my gym’s yoga class. Yes, I do go to gym, sporadically, not as often as I would like to, but enough times to feel the pain in my bones! Not only I went to gym, I also came back renewed to be able to write this post. [And enough courage to reveal a secret, only if you read the entire post and write a 'meaningful' comment here].
So, if you are having a writer’s block, then may be you can try some of the things listed here and let us know if they worked for you. If you are one of those who has not ever experienced writer’s block or are able to tackle it before it hits you, please share with us what works for you.
Here are some of the ideas that seemed to have worked for me, this time anyway….
- Shut down your computer and walk away
- Do not try to write all your posts on the computer, try a new medium sometimes, like writing ideas on a paper
- Try doing something entirely unrelated to your writing, a completely different ‘thing’ – for example, going to the gym! or a movie
- Listen to the music and try calming your nerves down – I usually get stressed if I know I want to write but cannot, adding to the frustration
- Try writing whatever comes to mind, may not be the post you want to publish, but writing just about anything that is on your mind sometimes can clear out a lot of that ‘stuff’ in our brains that might be blocking the real good stuff.
- I used to beat myself down with the title of the post, as in what is it that I want to write about. And I still fall in that trap. But I have noticed if I start writing my ideas down, which may or may not be the start of the actual post, I can always give it a title later depending on what my emphasis turns out to be.
- At times though, I have made up titles that I would like to write about. I have a list of just the titles, and sometimes even empty draft posts with different titles with no material in them! This can be handy when the mind is going blank.
- I even start writing different words on a piece of paper sometimes. Just random different words. That may sound absurd but helps me to get something out of the brain. And the words can sometimes start giving shape to some sentences. Anything to get me to jot down. Even as I watch TV I start writing down things that I observe.
- DO NOT think about the outcome. I am guilty of this one big time. I start thinking about how my final piece would turn out and if I am going to be able to get my point across in clear words. Stop doing that because not all articles you will write are going to come up to your expectations. Keep your voice and let it all out without worrying too much about the final product. This is the only way to develop your writing skills and keep your focus on the process.
- In addition to changing your media for writing, as in using paper and pencil, you can also try changing your surroundings. Going to a library or a local park may spark new ideas.
Let us know if you find this list helpful and if you have any other ideas to destroy that writer’s block!
Okay so now that secret!!
I also started working on my much awaited About page and have gathered enough courage to put up my picture. I hope most of you will still continue to come back and leave comments and engage in conversations. That will be my next post of course ;)