Running Out of Ideas: Tips for Writer's Block

Give yourself permission to be less than perfect.
— Dr. Patricia Huston

The post is inspired by Abbie Burgess from The Pink Paperdoll and her session that was part of Minnesota Blogger Conference. As after daily blogging for almost the past year this is definitely something that has been coming up more often. Those questions of: What do I write about next? What's something different that I haven't done before? Is this something I honestly want to publish on the blog? And sometimes you don't have answers to those questions. You're just left staring at a wall trying to figure out how to move past it. So inspired by Abbie Burgess, I wanted to share a few tips that I have to help get over, around, or under that wall so you can keep going. And some of these are ones that she mentioned in the session as they are things I've found help me whenever I deal with writer's block.

Get The Bad Ideas Out While Harnessing Any Good Ones

In order to figure out what a good idea for the next post and determine what are bad ones, you need to allow yourself to have any type of idea. And write them all down as you have them. You might find ones aren't right for your blog now but in the future when you look back at that list, you might find that it fits in then. And when you do have a good idea, don't just mull over it. Put it on your editorial calendar so you actually get around to writing it.

Immerse Yourself in Nature

Now as a side but related note, my astrology sign is Taurus an Earth sign and my moonsign is a Pisces a water sign. Which plays very into that I always feel the most relax and myself when I'm surrounded by nature. I get the best ideas and back into the right mindset when I get go to the lake or walk in the woods. But it's not just the stars that make it that way, researchers with the American Psychological Association have found a strong correlation between unstructured outdoors time with increased concentration and lower anxiety. So not only does this help with generating ideas but also helps reduce your stress.

Check Your Brand

It's good to look at your brand from time to time especially if you're stuck. You might need to change or refine your brand. Either it's something you're not into anymore, which is why you can't think of ideas for it. Or your topic is too narrow or broad which is causing you to have this challenge. So adjust and make changes to your brand if need be.

Try to Kick Start Your Creative Process

Maybe you've just been in a rut and need to switch things up to start those creative juices again. Some things that can help you kick start that process again are:

  • Sit down and just write anything that comes to mind like a stream of consciousness.
  • Write blog titles, don't focus on the content of the posts just the titles as that can help you later write those topics you want to cover.
  • Watch something on Netflix or Hulu.
  • Write about things that make you angry or mad.
  • Exercise.
  • Organize old photos.
  • Read a printed magazine or newspaper.
  • Take a simple photo or design and write the first thing that comes to mind on one side of a piece of paper, then on the other half write down potential blog titles based on what you wrote. You might find some interesting posts come out of it.

What are some things you do to get past writer's block?