Helpful ways to overcome writer’s block
Anyone who has written for a significant length of time is familiar with the dreaded term ‘writer’s block.’ Just the words writer’s block conjure up feelings of fear, self loathing, and inadequacy in writer’s minds. For those who write for a living, writer’s block can be especially dreadful, as it may mean forgoing the month’s rent or in extreme cases skipping meals.
In the worst case scenario it may even mean having to find a new job. Fortunately writer’s block is a not an incurable disease. Everyone who writes from time to time experiences writer’s block, but how does one get over writer’s block especially when it seems like inspiration and productivity have left forever?
Do Something Else
The first thing to do when experiencing writer’s block is not to stay sitting and fuming in front of a computer/notepad worrying about not being able to write. In these situations it is often a good idea to turn the computer off or put the notepad down and go participate in another more relaxing and mindless activity. Often taking a walk can be a great way to clear the head as well as release the tension that has built up due to writer’s block.
While walking or doing whatever activity you choose, make sure not to focus on yourself or your writing, but rather just allow your head to clear and relax. Often while taking a break from trying to create inspiration out of thin air, inspiration will hit and just like that writer’s block will be gone. Sometimes this does not work, but at the very least taking a break to focus on something other than writer’s block will help to relieve some tension.
Just Write Something
The main thing adding to or creating writer’s block is sometimes a manifestation of the fear of failure or feelings of inadequacy stemming from fear of rejection. Whether writing a thesis paper, school essay, short story, or novel, there is the pressure put onto you by yourself as well as outside influences such as grades or professor’s and peers’ impression of you. One way to help eliminate writer’s block is to take a step back and try to recognize whether or not fear is blocking you, and if so, fear of what?
The best way to combat fear is to recognize it and then press on through it. The best way to practice this, is to just write something down and try to continue writing whatever it is that you are stuck upon. It does not have to be good; just continuing on with whatever project you are stuck on at the moment will deliver its own inspiration, and that cannot happen unless you just start writing. Worst case scenario you write something worthless and you have to go back and try again. This is a better option than just sitting and feeling sorry for yourself because you have writer’s block.
There are a thousand ways to cure writer’s block, but you need to find one that works for you. Writer’s block at its very roots is an individualistic problem. The best way to get over writer’s block is to really know yourself and your habits. What works for one individual to stop writer’s block may not work for another. If you follow the advice above and really focus on what is going on inside of you that has resulted in writer’s block, hopefully you will be able to overcome it and continue writing.