Imagine it’s 4:00 p.m. on beautiful, sunny, Friday afternoon. Your next blog article assignment is due in 59 minutes and 45…44…43 seconds and counting, and you have yet to even think of a topic to write about.
If you manage an ongoing blog, chances are you’ve experienced that exact scenario more than once. So, what do you do? How do you avoid writer’s block – and how do you combat it once it strikes? Here are 10 simple ways to help eliminate writer’s block immediately
1) Remove yourself from distractions
It’s easy to be distracted by our surroundings. That guy in the next office has his 80’s Pandora station screaming REO Speedwagon right through those paper thin walls; those Kit Kat bites are leaping from your desk drawer every 5 seconds telling you to “take a break,” and the sunshine beaming in your window is telling you how much more fun you’d be having outside at the river drowning a worm or two. No wonder you’re having writer’s block! Take your laptop and your notes into a quiet room where you can be alone to think and not be disturbed. Removing yourself from those distractions will help your brain get back into a state of productivity and creativity.
2) Always have an audio recorder or pen and paper
It may seem like a nuisance, but with all the smartphones and hand-help devices we carry these days, there’s no excuse for forgetting that really great idea you had while in the drive-thru yesterday. If you have an audio recorder or a pen and paper handy everywhere you go, when that great idea strikes and you can’t put it into action in that moment, you can always resort back to those notes at a later date and bring those ideas to life.
3) Get organized
Having an organized workspace will definitely help your brain to stay methodical as it relates to work as well. When you know what’s coming, and you have it organized well into your schedule, your mind becomes better prepared to execute the task. Realizing at the last minute that your blog post is due today is one of the best ways to stumble into a severe case of writer’s block.
4) Stay current on current events
Spend a few minutes every day staying current on current events and updates happening within your industry. Industry news and updates can be great topics for your company blog, but only when it’s still considered “news.” Something that happened last month might have already been talked about to death, so jumping into a topic late can be risky.
5) Think of a problem to solve rather than a topic to discuss
Many times we start idea generation with thinking about a topic to talk about instead of starting with a problem to solve. Think about your readers, and why they read your blog. Readers want to walk away with one or more of the following things:
- how to do something
- educate themselves about a topic or
- be entertained.
6) Ask yourself thought provoking questions
If you’re still having a hard time deciding what your readers want to learn about, or learn how to do themselves, try asking yourself some thought provoking questions such as what is the number 1 question I am asked by my clients and customers?
7) Take a break and work on something else
Sometimes a great way to nip writer’s block in the bud, is simply to put it away, work on something else for a while and pick it back up when your mind has crawled itself out of that writer’s block tornado. Take the pressure off, stop thinking so hard, work on something else and chances are when you revisit your next blog post, you’ll have something in mind to start writing about.
8) Take a walk
Similar to the above option, taking a walk can help clear your mind and take the pressure off. Sometimes with writer’s block, we can become our own problem. We get in what seems like an endless cycle of doubts, bad ideas and frustrating banter with ouselves. Put it away, and take a walk. Take advantage of the nature, and take some time to clear your mind. Nature can spark a great deal of creativity and just the physical activity of walking can help to de-stress, relax and think more clearly.
9) Read Through old content
Reading through old content is a great way to generate new ideas but also a great way to discover great content that could easily be recycled and reused. If you blog on a pretty regular basis, you probably have hundreds of old blog posts that may just need to be updated to be relevant again, but still provide quality, relevant and informative information to your readers.
10) Suck it up
Sometimes the biggest obstacle between our writer’s block and a finished piece of quality content is procrastination. Going back to the scenario we began this post with – 4:00 p.m. on a sunny Friday afternoon. Is the problem truly just about coming up with a quality topic, or is it more about just wanting to do something else in the moment? It’s probably more about wanting to do something else in the moment. Remember, the quicker it gets done, the quicker you can be onto the next thing. Sometimes it’s just a matter of sucking it up, and getting it done.
There you have it, here are 10 tips to help eliminate writer’s block immediately!
If you have other tips that work for you, feel free to pass them along in the comments below!