Writer’s block is real. And sometimes it’s not even full-on block. You can write, but you just don’t like what’s spilling out onto the paper.
That too can be down to a writer’s blockage. You are likely not feeling free enough to experiment or to be completely honest with what you allow to flow out onto paper. You’re censoring yourself. And that is a quick route to writing content that you’ll never feel proud of.
Fear and stories we tell ourselves
So what is it that holds you back?
We tell ourselves stories all the time. Your little internal beast is quite frankly a bit of a bastard. And that beast is holding you back from creating content that is compelling, interesting, and worth sharing.
Here are some of the nasty stories that the writer’s block beast tells:
- I’m not interesting
- I’m not an expert
- I am not a good writer
- I waffle on too long
- I hate talking about myself
- Nobody wants to hear what I have to say
- It’s already been written and better than I could ever do
- I’m going to look stupid
- Nobody will read it anyway
These tales show up when we’re writing emails, social posts, blogs, and pretty much anything that makes us feel a little on display.
How can we unblock these tales so we can write more freely?
It starts with new stories. Welcome a friendlier beast into your mind and have them stand up to the mean writer’s block beast.
Your friendly beast might say, ‘What’s the worst that can happen. If I experiment, I will find what works. I can grow that muscle if I try.’
Feel the fear and do it anyway. Growth is on the other side.Your friendly beast
If you set pen to paper or fingers to keys, trying to create something astounding off the bat, then you will feel crap.
Try this instead. Just write. Let whatever is in your head spill out. Copy and paste inspiration from other places and plop it all down on the page. You will edit it later. This is for your eyes only.
Experiment with words, don’t be afraid of looking silly.
Try and look at your topic from different perspectives. You might feel inspired or find a new angle.
Start with the easiest bits first, and come back to the areas that leave you feeling a little bit knotty.
Remember that every single person who writes has written stuff that later makes them cringe. Building your writing muscles takes time. And it’s pretty cool to look back and see how far you’ve come down the line.
Write about something else
If the subject you’ve tasked yourself to write about is full of barriers – write about something else. Sometimes it’s the subject that creates blocks. It might be the wrong day for you to immerse yourself in it, or it might be that you never come back to it. Both are ok.
Be flexible with yourself. The goal here is not to feel pants about you. It’s to begin feeling stronger and more confident. Whiling away hours on something that doesn’t flow and feels painful will only reinforce that bastard beast’s tales.
Try switching to a topic that lights you up and feels you with feel goods. That can create a huge mindset shift.
I’d like you to try one of these writing prompts
Prompts are a really useful tool to unlock writer’s block. You can use them to get your juices flowing.
This doesn’t have to be something you ever share. In fact, write it as though it isn’t, and you’ll feel free to write uncensored. And that is where the gold is! You might be surprised at what comes out when you don’t think it’s for anybody else.
Set a ten-minute timer and try one of these 23 writing prompts:
- Things I want people to know about my business are……
- The biggest struggles I face in my business are…..
- My favourite thing about me is……
- Describe your best day at work
- Describe your worst day at work
- I am happiest when…..
- I feel scared when……..
- I feel confident when……
- The biggest challenge of my life was…..
- I am proud of……
- Describe the strangest thing you’ve ever seen
- My dream is…….
- Dear me, I want you to know that….
- If I could change one thing it would be….
- I am grateful for….
- I used to think that…..
- My best friend would describe me as…..
- If I wasn’t worried about failure, I’d…..
- I’m sorry I….
- I often tell myself…..
- I am passionate about…..
- I hate……
- I am hard on myself when….
If all else fails, go for a walk. Getting outside and moving, free from distractions, is a brilliant way to release your mind. Some of my best ideas arrive on a dog walk.
I’d love to hear how you get on with slaying the bastard writer’s block beast. Drop me a comment below and let me know if any of this has helped.
For more tips on finding your writer’s voice you might enjoy this podcast I did with Rachel Spencer, it’s full of tips about unleashing your inner beast.