After writing many posts for The Mentor Method, this week I hit a roadblock. I was sitting in my room, all ready to write and I had writer's block. I could not figure out what I wanted to write or how to make it creative and interesting. Luckily, in this line of work I was able to use this as inspiration for my piece and write about the ways I work through writer's block. Whether your job is actually to write posts, you just need to write a small proposal, or anything in between we can all struggle with phrasing our thoughts in an interesting, compelling, and concise way. Here's how I get through it:
1. Read through past work. Reading through things you have already done can help inspire you to see the holes in your body of work. Your body of work will be more complete when you fill in these small gaps. If this does help you find a topic, you may still be struggling with how to write it well.
2. Read through past rough drafts/unfinished work. If this didn't help you find a topic, I like to revisit my Google Drive and see what I left unfinished. Sometimes, a project that wasn't right for the moment can be perfect for now, and picking up those past drafts can create really interesting work. It may also inspire you by reminding you of your writing style and process.
3. 5 minute free write. If you have a general idea of topic, or even the outline of an idea of a topic, put pen to paper (or fingers to keys) and start writing. Set a timer on your phone and get to it. Write uninterrupted for five minutes without re-reading, backspacing, or editing. This will help get your writing starting.
4. Re-start. If you like your topic, but your free write is a little too messy to edit into a piece, re-write it. Start from scratch, channeling the opinions and voice of your free write. This second draft, though it takes time, can really make your work polished and well thought out.
5. Walk away and come back. After you've come up with a piece, you may feel like it is perfect or that it still needs a ton of work. Take a break. Walk away and come back after taking your mind off of it. Play with your dog or go make breakfast, whatever relaxes you. When you come back your fresh set of eyes will do a better job editing and perfecting what you've been working on.
6. Accept what you have. Sometimes, we still don't love what we have. But deadlines exist and our work will never be exactly perfect. We all have blog posts that fall short of our best piece or proposals that just don't sell it perfectly. As much as we strive to be perfect all the time, sometimes we have to accept a piece of work that just isn't quite there. This doesn't mean don't spend time checking your grammar or to not put your whole heart in it, but sometimes we have to be just shy of perfection. That is okay if you know you've worked your hardest to make it the best you can.
I hope all of you are able to take this advice the next time that you are feeling blocked and need some inspiration. Comment down below what you typically do to overcome writers block.