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6 Things I Do To Shake Writer’s Block Off

In February 2020, I experienced writer's block. My daily writing tracker looked like a chessboard, some squares shaded and some were not.


Probably a week prior, I saw a video on YouTube about the two-day rule. The rule says that when it comes to tracking habits, don't let yourself take two days off in a row, but you can take two days off in a week. Since then, I followed this rule to force myself to do the things I should do.


However, a few weeks right after the 2019 holidays, I felt a burnout. The assignment that I was working on seemed too daunting. It felt like I had to work twice as hard to get things done even though I have SMART goals to motivate me. I felt stagnant and my creative well was empty. Yet, I needed to shake this writer's block off.


But how did I bounce back? Here are some of the ways I did to keep things exciting and going.


1 - I feed my mind.

I’ve been freelance writing for years now and there are times when I felt that I don’t have anything new to write or a new way to write old content. So I have to feed my mind with useful content to be inspired.


However, lately I’ve been feeding my mind with audio-visual content than text. So this year, I resolved to read more and be inspired by other writers’ writings. And in order for me to reach that goal, I make sure that I spend at least 15 minutes reading a book aside from reading the Bible every morning.


2 - I change my surroundings more often.

I love my work at home life and staying on my desk. However, working at home for a long time can start to feel like I’m stuck and can sometimes creep into my own writing. My writing began to look formulaic or made out of a template. So I try to change the arrangement of my desk every once in a while.


At times, I change my clothes to simulate that I’m going to work in a distant office. And if people here at home asks if I’m going somewhere, I just smile and keep it to myself. But when really stuck, I really go somewhere else --- either to a mall, grocery store, bookstore, or fast food restaurant --- and stay there for an hour or so. Then I’ll return home with my mind refreshed.


3 - I literally leave things behind.

It is not a good practice to force myself to write even though I knew that my creative well has run dry. Even with a deadline approaching, I’ve learned to leave my writing unattended for a period of time and do something else other than writing.


It seems that I’m slacking off but I'm not. This is the same as number 2. I’m filling my creative well with new ideas as I seek for inspiration. By the time I return to my writing, I have a fresh perspective.


4 - I take a shower.

Some experts say that taking a shower can induce creativity. Aside from increasing the blood flow in the brain, taking a shower could help me access my brain’s alpha waves. That's why I take time inside the bathroom. There are times, the fresh feeling after a bath gives me a different kind of boost when I face the writing tasks.


5 - I do crafts or any hobby.

For me, coloring books, sketching, cross-stitching, crocheting, and playing the piano, feed my inner child. This inner child becomes my source of creativity. Doing these crafts and hobbies on weekends replenishes the lost creative juices and fill my well.


6 - I join other writers.

William Turner wrote, "Birds of a kind and color flock and fly together." Fellow writers know how tricky freelance writing and novel writing could be. By joining writers’ groups like Freelance Writers' Guild of the Philippines, I could get a little empathy and encouragement to feel better.


My Final Thoughts

It takes a little while trying a few different things to get unstuck. It's not easy. But you are not alone. I hope these six things will help you shake off your writer's block. If you do have other ideas, do share it with me by sending me a feedback or an email. Also, I'm inviting you to subscribe to our newsletter and join the tribe.