Struggling with Writer’s Block? Here are 3 Simple Steps to Beat it

Personally, I like the term creative bankruptcy more, but no matter how we’d name it, not being able to do something you love, that normally works like a dream, is incredibly frustrating.

This is your passion we’re talking about, not some boring, mindless chore that must be done.

And then, if you’re a professional blogger or author, you’ve got deadlines, you’ve got to earn a living.

And if words have abandoned you, who are you going to be? You’re a writer, right? Writers write, right?

So who are you if you can’t write?

A nobody?

Deep inside,  you know that’s nonsense.

Once a writer, always a writer. There’s no going back. Like being pulled from the Matrix.

But try telling yourself that late at night when all you managed to write for the day would fit comfortably inside a Tweet.

Now, there are many different types of creative block, and plenty of ways to tackle them and get back to writing. (I’ve written an entire ebook full of suggestions — you can find it here.)

But your time is limited, so we need to address this issue in a little less than a thousand words, so here are three critically important things for you to remember about being creatively blocked.

1. Once a writer, always a writer…

This is the most important part that you need to remember about being a writer.

To be blocked, you have to have written in the past. You have to be a writer.

So, you are still a writer.

And you will write again.

Just give it some time.

2. There’s a BIG difference between being hopeless and feeling hopeless

You are not your feelings.

This might not seem like much of an advice, but the truth is that objectively, you cannot write at the moment.

It’s a temporary block, since you cannot truly point to any creative individual who spent the rest of their lives being blocked.

But your mind, the way you interpret this temporary event and panic because of it, your mind is telling you that you’ll never write again, that you’re done, that others have it so much easier…

Remember the times before your block. When you were confident in your ability to sit down at your desk and write.

Well, your ability to write is still there. Maybe latent, but it’s there all right, deep in your nervous system. You don’t need to start again from scratch — just go back to what you were doing before.

3. Do other stuff

Do something else for a while. Like go fishing, travel for a while…

Interact with fellow human beings.

But most of all, absorb.

I once read this study that for every hour spent writing, you must read and accumulate information for like 12-14 hours.

So, read. Watch movies, TV shows.

Writing is simply a process of connecting dots, rather than being this god-like creature that can make something out of nothing, so you must have dots to connect.

How do you deal with writer’s block?

Which of these three things is most important for you to remember?

What would you add to the list?

Any other tips for beating writer’s block?

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25 thoughts on “Struggling with Writer’s Block? Here are 3 Simple Steps to Beat it

  1. I once made a post while I was “feeling hopeless”. I knew what I wanted to write on, yet I couldn’t put words together to get it written. You know what I did? I made a post about being blocked; I was feeling at that time and asked my readers how they deal with such feelings. In other words, I wrote when I couldn’t write! Not writing was the only thing I was feeling at that moment, but then, it’s okay, because I can always put my feelings into writing.

    So the fourth point I’m trying to add here is:
    Write about how it feels to be blocked.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Whenever I get the block, I simply engage myself in a flurry of activities, such as reading. I could read literature or articles written by other bloggers. Or I could just strum the guitar for an hour or two.

    I’ve tried to force myself to write during a block a couple of times, but I wasn’t successful. Things like this, it’s best to just wait for them to pass. And they will pass — after all, they ARE temporary.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Quick question. I know that reading helps writers in ways such as learning new words, punctuation and all that (blah, blah, blah) but in what other ways can reading everyday help you to become a better writer?

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    1. Well, it feeds your brain.

      Where do you think ideas come from? Some magical land. No. There’s a clear correlation between memory and imagination. The better the memory, the better the imagination.

      You must feed your brain, so you can have ideas, so you know what is possible. To gain a different perspective. To learn from those who have been at it long before you.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this! Whenever I experience this, I will just try and interact with other writers/bloggers on social media, and that usually gives me all the inspiration I need. Great post! Xx

    Like

  5. Cristian, I liked your use of the phrase “creative bankruptcy” to label writer’s block. If you are stifled with a project, be willing to move on to something else that is on your “To Do” list. Sometimes, instead of writing, use some of your creative time to research for an upcoming project. Reading other blogs and writing thoughtful comments persuades your mind to write.

    Think of writer’s bankruptcy as a cookie jar running out of cookies. A writer needs to find some way or something to create a deposit.

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  6. I love this so much! Creative blockage is just part of life. I meditate a lot, and also find that writing during active meditation sessions sometimes helps…most of the time it’s all just gibberish, but every now and then a word or phrase sticks out, or triggers some random thought or memory that gets me at least kind of inspired. Usually, that gets me out of my “rut.”

    And sometimes, I’ll purposely block myself when I feel my mind struggling to find flow – if it feels like I’m forcing it, it’ll probs also sound forced. At that point, I’ll maybe have a cup of coffee, read a book, play The Sims 4 (shhhh, lol), do something with my husband and kiddos, or some combination of those 4 things. It does help to step away from it all – changes of scenery! 🙂

    Like

    1. Sims 4 is cool. I even thought at times I should write a novel based on my “stories” and all that I did with my sims. Anyway… yes you are right: the are times when you’d much rather do anything but write, and maybe you should do that. Just don’t use those moments to procrastinate.

      Like

      1. Agree! No procrastination, it’s definitely not good for my process. I also considered writing something based on my stories from the Sims as well – might still be something cool to explore, though I think mine would just be short stories or novella-like. Thanks for the tips!

        Liked by 1 person

  7. If I know what I’m intending to write about, I just pretend that my hands can’t stop typing so I’m just going to type. I remind myself that I can just erase it all in 10 minutes if I want to. What comes out isn’t necessarily awesome, but it’s usually something I can work with rather than just erase. Often, somewhere in the words, I can spot MY words.

    Like

  8. “You are not your feelings”…I LOVE that! So many people get hung up on their emotions and they let it define them, they let it direct their decision making, and it can be so debilitating. I think I might have to post those words on my fridge!

    Liked by 1 person

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