I gotta say, I wanted to write a blog post today. I really did.
But I haven’t got one single idea. Not a one.
It’s not that there are no ideas. They’re out there. I just can’t get a grasp on them.
Isn’t This a Blog Post?
So, you say, what is this, if not a blog post?
Well, yes. Yes, it is. I figured since I couldn’t think of something to write about, I’d write about that.
I highly doubt I’m the only one who struggles with this so it seemed like as good an idea as any.
If you’re a blogger or do any content writing for your business, you know exactly what this feels like.
You sit there thinking, I really should write a blog post today, but you can’t make your brain work long enough to get any thoughts down.
To blog or or not to blog, that is the question.
Blog When You Have Something of Value to Say
Personally, I don’t believe in “putting stuff up” just to fill space. If it’s not worthy and valuable to anyone, you should probably leave it where it is — buried in the dark.
There are days when my head is filled with ideas. I can’t sit down at my computer fast enough.
Then there are days like this one — nary a thought to be had.
Thoughts can be fleeting, I’ll give you that.
Feeling Creative — Or Not
A variety of things affect my creativity and range anywhere from sheer fatigue to a dearth of subject matter. Likely, fatigue probably is the reason for said dearth.
I know when I’m tired or my energy is low, writing seems like an impossible task.
Even figuring out what to have for lunch on those days can be overwhelming.
My mood, and by extention, my creative juices, are subject to ebbs and flows. Sometimes I just can’t find the energy or desire to write.
Should You Wait For Inspiration To Strike?
If you’re uninspired, should you try to write?
Well, maybe you shouldn’t. Maybe doing something else is a better use of your time. Often a good night’s sleep and change in perspective can make a world of difference.
But what if you really feel that you have to get something written? What might you do to help get the creative juices flowing?
Read other people’s blog posts. That’s one possibility. I often find that when my mind is a blank page, reading other people’s posts helps jumpstart my thought processes. I get ideas I can either place in my swipe file or sit down right then and there and write about. Sometimes you just need a spark to light the fire.
Just start writing. That’s what I did today. I’ll let you be the judge of whether it was a good idea or not. Sometimes just getting started, as with so many things in life, is enough to get the ball rolling. And if it doesn’t, you can always hit the delete button.
Or, as I sometimes do, write it out and leave it for a day or so and then come back to it. Often you can clearly see whether it’s a candidate for the round file or has some promise worth working on.
The point is you gave it a try. If it works, great. If it doesn’t, well, you haven’t lost anything other than a few minutes of your time.
Do something else. Refocus. Read training tips or concentrate on other aspects of your business. Writers are never finished perfecting their craft, and if you just can’t make yourself actually write, then spend the time on other tasks that need attention. You’ll feel useful and it will be time well spent. Gaining knowledge is never a waste.
Write for pleasure. Sometimes when I can’t focus on a topic related to my business, writing something totally off topic, for the sheer pleasure of it, can get me back in the writing groove. In fact, often when I’m struggling to settle on a topic related to my writing business it’s because other ideas are crowding my thoughts. Why not focus on those instead?
Who’s to say that a blog post that’s on a subject off your usual beaten path might not be precisely what someone else needs at that moment? You may tap into a whole new segment of your audience and find new readers.
Thoughts Spoken – A Sister Site
As a matter of fact, I created a sister site to Terri Cruce Writes called Thoughts Spoken for this very reason — so that I would have an outlet for those ideas and thoughts that fall outside my freelance blogging business.
Having that sister site assuages the guilt I feel when I write off topic, but keeps me in the writing mode. And you just never know what will resonate with someone.
You Be The Judge
So you be the judge. Was today’s post valuable or worthless?
Is this a familiar struggle in your business?
How do you deal with — I hate to call it writer’s block because I don’t really believe in that. But how do you deal with energy dips in your writing?
Giving Ourselves Permission
We need to learn to give ourselves permission to veer off course or to have a slow day. We tend to kick ourselves for the same behaviors we readily accept, even encourage, in others. Why are we so hard on ourselves?
I don’t know the answer, but I do know that we need to get over it. We deserve an off day as much as anyone else.
Be kind to yourself. Be understanding. Don’t expect to be prolific every day of the week.
Write. Or take a day off.
Hang your version of a Gone Fishing sign and give yourself a break.
I promise it’ll be okay.
It might even be wonderful.