Learn How To Get Past The Usual Mental Block When Writing – Best Practices That Will Help
If there is one thing all writers have in common apart from their love for writing is that dreaded, nightmarish writer’s block.
A mental block or more popularly – a writer’s block is a form of a creative shutdown. Though temporary in nature, it can turn out to be immensely frustrating as well as demotivating, especially if you are new to writing.
Some of the signs that you are facing a mental block are:
- You feel a sudden dearth of inspiration that would otherwise come naturally to you
- Your thoughts start feeling foggy, as though you have lost the ability to think straight
- You find yourself easily distracted – either by your own intrusive thoughts or things external to you, such as your phone
- You being to feel dejected and anxious about your work
Now keep in mind that nearly all writers have grappled with mental blocks at some point in their careers. Yes, even the famous ones with millions in book sales and even those using the best writing app out there.
However, they have learned the tricks to put the block behind them and continue to work on their masterpiece with their usual flair.
But guess what? You can do it too.
And we are here to help you do just that.
Tips for dealing with a writer’s block:
These are certain tried and tested practices which you can adopt in order to make that annoying mental block a thing of the past:
1. Practice mindfulness.
Mindfulness is not this esoteric spiritual realm that only experienced practitioners can reach.
Mindfulness means to stay in the present period.
As easy as that sounds, it is one of the most difficult things in the world.
In the age of instant satisfaction, digital distraction, and perpetual anxiety, mindfulness is perhaps the most important thing needed to get your work done.
- Start simple meditation by closing your eyes and focusing on your breathing for at least five minutes every day
- Begin cultivating an attitude of gratitude
- Become self-aware of your thoughts and emotions
2. Keep distractions at bay.
It is tempting to reach your hand out, and reply to that text for one last time. Before you even know it, you’ve binge-watched ten YouTube videos and are left with your hands on your head, cursing your lack of will-power.
- You are always more likely to give in to temptation when it can be easily gratified; remember – out of sight, out of mind
- Keep reminding yourself of your end goal – envision success
- Take deep breaths when you find yourself distracted
3. Change your environment
Yes, the corner of your favorite café may be lucky for you, but sometimes a change in your physical environment goes a long way in encouraging fresh, new thoughts.
Like it or not, the environment we operate in affects our mood and our flow of ideas. Working in the same environment for too long can lead to mental fatigue that could be the cause of your writer’s block.
- Even if you can’t physically change your environment, give your existing workspace a revamp
- Find a quiet place where you can focus easily
- Periodically declutter your desk
4. Take baby steps
Any task can seem overwhelming when you have just begun, and you see the amount of work that lay ahead of you.
It can bog you down, thus, creating a mental block that can be hard to overcome. However, this should never result in you giving up.
- If you find yourself struggling to even begin with your writing, a novel outline can work wonders for you
- Slice up your tasks into small daily goals
- Set a timer and aim to complete your micro-task in the decided duration
5. Get out and run
Physical health and mental health are interrelated. Being physically active aids in developing a new pattern of thinking. This can help you get back on track and complete your writing on time.
- Moderate exercise can be done even in the comfort of your home, so there is no excuse of not having the time to go out
- Make sure you enjoy your exercise instead of being burdened by it
- Remember to not over-exert yourself at any cost as that can defeat the purpos
6. Talk it out
We are social beings, and we all need a listening ear once a while. Talking with your friends or family can work wonders for your mental health and leave you with a renewed zeal to get back at your desk ASAP
- Speak about your mental state with those close to you – tell them if you are feeling sad or anxious or demotivated
- Make an attempt to be physically close to the person if possible
- Commit to certain activities together such as watching a movie, playing games, or going out to dinner
7. Keep a journal
Wait, but doesn’t keeping a journal mean more writing? Yes, but journaling is a great way to attain clarity in thought and emotion, which means lesser struggle with mental blocks.