Hitting a writing wall is something I know all too well. Being someone that writes as part of my 9-5 full-time job, for this blog and also for the occasional bit of freelance writing, I get writer’s block all the flipping time, me and writer’s block are pals at this point. However, I have found that I get it way more often for this blog (hence the random and sporadic absences of posts on my blog). After thinking long and hard about this, I have come to the conclusion it’s because for my other avenues of writing someone is telling me loosely the direction of what needs to be said, as well as a topic, but here I am free to talk absolute nonsense (which let’s be honest I do).
Whilst you would think having that freedom would mean writing would be easier and come more naturally, but for me, it doesn’t. My mind is a constant washing machine of ideas 24/7 that it’s hard to pinpoint what I want to say, that I sometimes just get a bit overwhelmed, or on occasion, I completely dry up of ideas all together. It has taken me a lot of time to admit to myself, that hitting a wall with blogging or with writing in general is completely normal. Doing anything repeatedly every week can take a toll on you, even if it’s something you enjoy doing as a creative outlet.
So after hitting many walls with blogging, I thought I would let you in on some tips that work for me personally to help me slowly climb that wall (even if your wall is as big as the great wall of China), that will hopefully get you back in the groove again.
HAVE A BREAK
As the great people who work at KitKat say ‘Have a break, eat a KitKat’. When I feel like I just can’t get in the mood, or I’m just not feeling it, I simply don’t post for that week, or sometimes even two weeks. Sometimes either life gets in the way, so you need to focus on something else or you get writer’s block and can’t will yourself to write anything decent. So instead of forcing myself and either writing something mediocre or turning something I like doing into a chore, I just don’t do it. Once I drop the pressure (which I am putting on myself) I can clear my mind, have some time to think of ideas that will inspire me to write and most of the time that solves the problem.
CHANGE UP YOUR SCHEDULE
Over January I was sticking to a fairly strict blogging schedule for the first time ever, which I would plan out at the beginning of the month so I have a rough plan to go by. This consisted of posting every Tuesday and Thursday and for the most part, it was working for me, but after a few weeks in I was feeling the pressure of blogging whilst dealing with other things personally, as well as my day job so once I missed one day, it spiralled into two days and then two weeks.
However, now I am taking my schedule with a pinch of salt. By this I mean I am going to cut down to one post a week on a Tuesday because that is a realistic goal I think I can achieve and then have back up ideas for if I am having a slow week or in the mood to write, that will act as a bonus post. Whilst that sounds pretty simple, just doing that has taken the pressure off me and it means I can be a lot more flexible with myself because at the end of the day I am the only one responsible if I don’t post so why not use that to my advantage.
FIND SOME INSPIRATION
More often than not I find myself thinking of a really good idea during my monthly scheduling session, then getting to the actual day I’m sitting down and writing it and I just can’t for the life of me make it sound coherent or interesting. It all blurs into one and even after rewriting and rewriting, it just sounds like utter rubbish. As a result, I get in a bit of a rut of not knowing how to make it sound better but really loving the idea and not wanting to abandon it.
But after experiencing this many times the only way to get out of my rut is to go to my first point and take a (small) break and then come back and look at some bloggers or writers I find inspiring. I don’t know if it’s just reading someone else’s work to take your mind off the problem or looking at blogs I aspire to be like, but more often than not it lights a fire under me and get my mojo back.
I hope some of my tips help you overcome hitting a wall with blogging and I’d love to know in the comments what you do to get a new mindset when this happens to you!