From tips on how to improve time management to advice on editing your manuscript, I’ve covered a lot about the subject of writing in the last couple of weeks. However, I haven’t mentioned how to deal with most scribes’ worst enemy – writer’s block. You can manage your time wisely and set yourself up for writing success, but when you experience a mental block, it can throw your whole day into a tailspin. If you’re desperate to learn how to overcome writer’s block, I have some tips that can help you open up the floodgates of words, phrases, paragraphs, lists and more once again.
#1 – Change the Setting
Writer’s block has a tendency to set in when you get too accustomed to a routine. If you’ve been writing from the same chair at the same desk for years, it might be time to find a different spot to work. Try taking your laptop to the coffee shop around the corner, or even the public library. Simply relocating to a different room in your house can work wonders, too. A change in scenery might be just the thing to break you out of your slump.
I’ve written about the importance of physical activity before, but I can’t stress enough how crucial it is to your mental performance. When you move around, you cause your heart to pump blood more vigorously throughout your body, which has the effect of stimulating your brain. If writer’s block has got you down, a simple walk around the block or a bike ride could get the ideas flowing again.
#3 – Inspiration From Music
Although it might not be convenient for you to listen to tunes on the job, music is one of the most powerful tools when it comes to unlocking your brain. The combination of melodies, rhythmic patterns and words can help your mind reconfigure the way it thinks, thus getting you unstuck from your writer’s block. If you’re having trouble getting the ideas to flow, listen to a few tracks on shuffle mode and you’ll be re energized in no time.
#4 – Accomplish the Toughest Tasks First
This is one of the key tips for managing your time wisely, but it’s also helpful if you’re wondering how to overcome writer’s block. Begin your day by tackling your toughest projects, and the remainder of your work will come more easily. If you have trouble getting good ideas committed to your hard drive, simply do the best you can – you can always come back to the tough projects later to improve them once you’re feeling the flow again.
Do you write every day, or do you take days off in between your projects and assignments? If you’re not consistent in your writing, it’s much easier for writer’s block to become an issue. By writing every single day, you keep your writing muscles in shape, and you stave off the specter of writer’s block more easily. Even if you simply write a few sentences on your days off, you will notice an improvement in the ease with which you accomplish your work.
#6 – You Are What You Eat
This is one of the world’s oldest cliches, but it’s also true. You are quite literally made of the foods and beverages you consume, so if you subsist on a steady diet of junk food, your brain and body will perform accordingly. If writer’s block is something you’ve been struggling with, try substituting fruits and vegetables for chips and candies. You’ll notice a boost in energy, and you’ll also find that your brain becomes sharper.
#7 – Take a Nap
This tip probably seems antithetical to your goal of becoming more productive, but it might be the most powerful piece of advice on this list. If you’re just not coming up with the ideas you need to complete your writing assignments, you probably need to recharge your brain. A simple, 20-minute nap can realign your perspective and give your brain the energy boost it needs to get great ideas flowing once again.
Do you suffer from writer’s block? What do you do to get your ideas flowing again? Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below.