Just Get Started: Simple Solutions to Overcome Blogger’s Block
For a designer, maintaining a blog can be challenging because graphic design requires us to think and communicate in terms of visuals, and writing for a blog is just the opposite. It’s important to post often and consistently if you want readers to read and share your content, but this can be a challenge if you have a hard time getting started. Sometimes the pressure to create “the perfect post” can leave you stuck with where to begin.
There have been times when I’ve had all the inspiration in the world for a blog post, but for some reason I would find myself hesitant to write them. I’d jot down a few bullet points or ideas that popped in my head, but it was just something about facing a blank page to get started that intimidated me. Even though I knew what things I wanted to write about, I just couldn’t get started because I felt like I didn’t know where to start. This is what I like to call a classic case of blogger’s block: writer’s block in blogger form. Although it may sound extremely serious, there are actual several simple solutions you can start using today to overcome blogger’s block.
Just start writing
Transferring your thoughts into words can sometimes be a challenge, especially if you’re one to overthink everything you write. Whenever you feel like all your ideas are stuck just at the ends of your fingertips, try something called brain dumping. Brain dumping is an easy exercise that requires you to continuously write whatever comes to mind for a set period of time. Literally, any thoughts that pop in your head should be transferred into words on your paper, so if all you can think about is “I have nothing to write” then you continue to write that until something else comes to mind. There are only three rules: you can’t erase, you can’t read what you’ve written and you can’t stop writing for at least 10 minutes. This exercise is sure to get you warmed up to writing in general and eventually help you overcome your blogger’s block.
For some reason, whenever I begin a blog post, I have this overwhelming sense of pressure to make sure I communicate exactly what I mean. Overthinking everything I want to say is a sure way to get stuck with blogger’s block. To avoid this problem, I like to brainstorm and write in smaller chunks, as oppose to writing out an entire post at one time. Thinking about the post in sections helps me feel less overwhelmed. Working on small sections at a time is a simple change that can make a huge impact on the way you feel about writing. Starting with smaller tasks such as coming up with a title or thinking of SEO keywords can help you warm up to writing and eventually overcome blogger’s block. Even though you aren’t actually writing out your blog post, you are still accomplishing tasks that need to be done for your post and hopefully they will spark your creative juices in the process.
Establish a routine
Having a system for your writing process can help to overcome blogger’s block, because it gives you a place to start each time you start writing. You know what to expect with every blog post you start, because you start it the same way each time. For example, when I first think of a post idea, I like to write down all the key points I can expand on. From there I’ll think of title ideas and develop an outline, and draft, and so on. This brainstorming routine gives me a starting point, making it easier for my creative juices to flow because I don’t have to spend time figuring about where I want to start. This super, simple solution may seem to easy to make a difference, but having a routine process can be really helpful to those trying to overcome blogger’s block.
Having a system for your writing process can help to overcome blogger's block. Click To Tweet
Take a break
Sometimes, the best way to overcome blogger’s block is to just take a break from writing. Timing is everything in the creative writing process and there are going to be times you simply can’t write because you need to clear your mind to get new ideas in. Going on a walk or grabbing some lunch can help take your mind away from whatever you’re focused on and give you just what you need to rejuvenate your ideas. Changing up your work environment can expose you to new ideas and visual inspiration. Even taking a moment to talk with a friend can spark something new to help you to overcome blogger’s block. If you feel like you’re forcing ideas, try taking a break until you find the right inspiration to get you started.
Research and Review
When I’m not sure how to put into words what it is I want to say, I find it helpful to go back to the drawing board and research what others have had to say. Pinterest is a great place for finding other bloggers with a similar niche and I often use it as a resource when trying to overcome blogger’s block. For example, when starting this post, I used Pinterest to find some sites with writing inspiration and I came across this post with an abundance of resourceful links to inspire anyone looking to overcome blogger’s block. Reading other’s experience on the subject helped me to think about my own experiences and solutions. When looking at other sites for inspiration, it is important to keep in mind that you never want to copy other people’s work, but instead use their writing to gain new ideas and perspective about the subject.
Outline your thoughts
Designers are often advised not to begin designing on the computer, but instead start the process with the old-fashion sketchbook and pencil. Sketching is just a quick and rough foundation, but can be extremely helpful when digitizing your work. Using a blog outline to help write your blog posts can be just as useful. The Blogging Brainstorm Worksheet is a guide designed to help you organize your thoughts and plan out all the details for a post before transitioning to the computer. Using this worksheet at the beginning of each post you write can help you write faster and more efficiently. Outlines act as a writing foundation and serves not only as a great starting point, but also overall guide to writing a post.
Having trouble getting started?
Try writing with the Blogging Brainstorm worksheet
Just because blog posts should be written in logical order for the reader (introduction, body, closing) doesn’t mean they have to start that way. Inspiration comes to us spontaneously, so don’t fight the urge to skip around when writing a blog post. If you have an idea for the closing paragraph, go straight to writing your closing paragraph; even if you haven’t written the introduction yet! The goal is to get your ideas down on paper, you can always spend time rearranging and organizing what you have written later. Going with the flow of your thoughts can help overcome blogger’s block simply because you’re able to think without hesitation and write how it comes to you, as oppose to forcing your thoughts to follow the flow of your writing.
Let me know how the Blogging Brainstorm Worksheet help you overcome blogger’s block!