Imagine this. You prepared a nice steamy cup of your favorite long black. You sit down on your chair, opened your computer, took a sip of your coffee, and words are flowing like running water. You’re just enjoying the process now, everything else doesn’t matter. Pure bliss!
Only it’s not happening this time. Although you followed your rituals and the coffee is also steamy—but zero steamy words. You simply can’t write anything which is helping to build the plot, structure, or taking your blog/article in certain directions.
You only got this: “Once upon a time…” Well something like that, you get the gist, right? Now you know why you can’t find any magic to create a spell—it’s writer’s block! It’s not about you being a bad writer at all, it just something that happens with writers’ creative brains.
So how do you overcome writer’s block? Well, it’s a delicate method. it’s a process that is often personal and works best with the trial and error method. However, it’s not like there is no proven method. Because at the end of the article, you will find some tips, hacks, and methods which will stir your brain into writing again.
1. Work On Other Creative Projects
The first method to overcome writer’s block is to offer yourself another creative task other than writing. It could be anything—painting pictures, graphic designing, building something, or sculpturing may be. You can also try writing poems if you’re a columnist. You can work on designing your portfolio or working on your website. Or any creative projects which takes you away from your original writing.
The simple idea is that stepping on other tasks can stimulate your imagination and gets the creative juices flowing. Because your imaginative part was already active on other projects—you might as well get back the flow of creativity on your writing.
2. Just Write for the Sake of Writing
When you’re working on your first draft, it’s impossible to get any progress if you’re trying to be a perfectionist. This prevents you from getting anything and you get stuck. Rather, the first draft is something that is a work in progress. It is something that is polished later with all the editing and proofreading.
Therefore, to overcome writer’s block, you just type some words at least. Don’t be so judgmental about it. Just like Vincent Van Gogh advised in a letter:
“Just slap something on it when you see a blank canvas staring at you with a sort of imbecility. You don’t know how paralyzing it is, that stare from a blank canvas that says to the painter you can’t do anything.”
3. Get Rid of Distractions
This one is often the reason. Therefore, you can get rid of your smartphone, and disconnect from the internet. You should also clean your room and your desk because a creative’s mind is always cluttered, you don’t want your surroundings too.
You can also ask your loved ones to offer you some space. If that doesn’t work—wakeup in the morning and began writing. The first time you wake up, your brain is still in Theta mode, the brain wave cycle that your subconscious is in when you sleep. For some writers, 4:00 a.m. or 5:00 a.m is the sweet spot that works best.
Take 2-3 hours and give it a try. Because your solitude will provide you with the most creative ideas. You need to be with yourself!
4. Figure out Your Ritual
If you will read the rituals of some of the most famous writers, you will notice one thing. Everybody has a special and unique routine which they follow before writing. Writing in the morning, going for a morning walk, doing push-ups, preparing coffee, or anything else.
How much these routines or rituals benefits them, is best known to them only. However, the idea here is to repeat your rituals so that your brain can understand what works best for you. Figuring out the best rituals can set you at the peak of maximum productivity.
5. Try a New Place
This is one of the most effective ways to overcome writer’s block. It works for most people. Because writing in the same environment with all the familiarity can get you in a creative rut. You need to change the background.
To begin with, you can try a new cafe, a library, your friend’s place, or even a garden. Your mind gets bored with the same physical objects and air. So when you go to some other place, the new air rejuvenates your writing and you become like a newborn writer again.
6. Write While you Sleep
What happens when you dream or go to sleep? Your subconscious is working and solving problems. Therefore, say if you’re stuck between a story and you are not getting any ideas to lead the story into the next chapter. You can always take a nap—works best during the night.
In any case, when you will wake up the next morning, you’d have solved the murder mystery. This works because you will wake up with a fresh perspective and new ideas. A great way to overcome writer’s block.
7. Consider some Time Off
Taking a break allows the conscious brain an opportunity to deal with questions that your conscious mind cannot fix. The answer will bubble to the surface when you’re doing something else, giving you the impression that you need to make progress in writing.
Sometimes the best thing to do is go for a vacation. Giving your brain a literal break, helps you to get back to writing—refreshed. And it also gives the unconscious mind much more of a chance to figure out what is stopping you.
These methods are practiced by different writers and are a great tool to overcome writer’s block. Writer’s block is not something new or incurable, you just don’t have to get into self-pity.
Writer’s block can be maddening but it’s not something you should have a fear about. It’s part of the creative process, it’s telling you to improve or change something. Every genius writer ever existed, got through it—it shall also pass for you.