1. Write something no one else will see.
My paralysis when it comes to writing usually stems from the fact I know others will be reading it. These days, everything we do – especially as bloggers – is crafted for an audience. Blog posts, tweets, Instagram captions… and it doesn’t matter if there are 5 people or 500 people reading it, the fact it’s someone other than you can be intimidating. And, sometimes, that gets the better of us.
So write something, safe in the knowledge you’re the only person who is going to see it. Destroy it afterwards if you want to. Write about anything. Your childhood. Your day. One of your favourite songs. It doesn’t really matter.
A couple of times I’ve done this and they’ve actually turned into blog posts. Some of my most popular ones, at that. Though that somewhat defeats the point of the activity, I was so proud of what I’d been able to create without fear holding me back, I was keen to share it.
Other times, it has made absolutely no sense and I’m glad it will never be seen again.
2. Try a less intense activity.
Blogging requires hard work and focus. Between writing, SEO and creating/selecting graphics, it’s not always the most relaxing thing to do. I sometimes think the amount of work which goes into it is what causes us to procrastinate.
Instead of sitting and staring at the page in front of you, do something that requires little thought. Have a bath. Go for a walk. Watch Netflix. Basically, stop trying to force it and take a breather. Just be wary this break doesn’t descend into a semi-permanent hiatus…
3. Do another creative task.
I recently discovered that doing something else creative can bring inspiration for blogging. For example, while I’m busy colouring in, my mind will wander and all of a sudden, there’s a blog post forming in my head. Though it’s a different type of creativity, it puts me in that mindset and can work wonders!
If it’s not going to look completely out of place in your blog, you could even write a post about whatever activity you choose.
I’ve found that reading something tends to spark a bit of creativity. Sometimes, it reignites my love of words; of expression. Other times, reading someone else’s thoughts and experiences stirs emotions in me which are good to channel into my own work.
It’s all well and good saying that, but what do you read? I, personally, turn to books I know and love. Others dive into something new. Try both and see what happens!
The only word of caution I would give with this one is that, although it’s perfectly fine to be inspired by others, be conscious of not losing your own voice. If you write something in the aftermath of reading, be sure to compare it with previous posts to make sure it sounds like you – not the author you’ve just read!
B) Other blogs.
Have you ever read a blog post, and wanted to leave a mini essay as a comment because you had so much to say on the topic? Other blogs can encourage us to open up about our own experiences – use that energy and put it into a blog post.
Or, it could be the opposite situation – you disagree with what was said. To use this post as an example, if you get to the end of it and think “none of these ways have ever worked for me” but have your own ways to overcome writer’s block, make a post on the subject. You may have the answers someone else is looking for.
5. Get off social media.
I notice a BIG difference in creativity levels depending on how much time I spend on social media.
When I spend a lot of time on social media, my head gets full with what I’ve been seeing. Despite my best attempts not to, I take a lot of it on board. Consequently, any ideas are pushed to the back. Social media stifles my creativity a lot, it seems.
When I take a few days away, or when I reduce the amount of time on there, a lot of the clutter falls away. Then I find my ideas can wriggle their way to the front of my mind.
6. Take a blogging break.
It’s better to take some time out to recharge your batteries than to churn out content you’re not happy with. If you’ve already generated a lot of content, it’s natural to hit a block. Let your readers know you’re taking some time out, and set a date for your return. You can always use social media scheduling to keep older content circulating in the mean time.
Take a few days and implement some of the previous suggestions. Write down any ideas that may pop up, but don’t necessarily dive into working on them straight away. Allow yourself the breathing space!
7. Stop putting pressure on yourself.
As the saying goes “done is better than perfect.” I nitpick my posts beyond belief – it’s a miracle any of them are published on time. As I know I’m going to do this, it takes some of the fun out of the process. That said, blogging should be fun! So, try to put the perfectionist on pause, and enjoy yourself.
8. Explore Pinterest for inspiration.
If you search “blog post ideas” in Pinterest, you’ll be met with numerous suggestions. There are hundreds! Some are niche specific, and others can be tweaked to fit in with any blog. Browse through, make a note of any which could work for you, and go from there.
If you haven’t delved into the world of Pinterest yet, that’s not a problem. Do the same thing with Google instead.