“Overthinking kills creativity.”
The writer’s block struggle is very real. I’ve been experiencing this creative slowdown far more frequently than I would like to admit. It’s sort of ironic that I am writing about writer’s block. Well, I guess this is better than not writing at all?
It happens to the best of us. It comes and goes without any real explanation. I notice that for me, it seems to be more constant when I’m feeling overwhelmed, stressed or just can’t focus.
2018 started off on such a consistent note with my writing and then over the past week I felt a bit “tapped out” when it came to typing out my thoughts. While I may never have a firm grasp on kicking writer’s block to the curb, there are definitely ways to keep it from coming around so often.
I took to Instagram and asked for some tips to help get my words flowing once again. Since many of you seemed to have experienced this same creative lull, I thought it would be a good idea to share some of those tips on here.
I’ve always found it extremely helpful to share different perspectives and to bounce ideas off of one another. So if you are literally at a loss for words, I hope these tips help you as much as they’ve been helping me. Keep scrolling to read more!
Silencing Your Thoughts/Meditation
I must admit that this has been a constant challenge for me. I’ve been reading The Untethered Soul and it talks so much about silencing the voice inside your head. My voice speaks loud and it speaks often.
I’ve been paying more attention to it lately and it’s seriously incredible how quickly it can change subjects. Sometimes it makes perfect sense, other times it sounds like gibberish. It’s overwhelming.
My problem is not that I don’t have any ideas, it’s that I have too many. It sometimes becomes difficult for me to narrow my focus. This is a constant work in progress, but I’m slowly chipping away at it.
The concept of meditation has always been intriguing to me. I have not yet mastered this, but I do believe that it can be extremely beneficial in terms of cultivating constructive thoughts. With a little more focus and practice, I’ll get there. Very curious if any of you meditate and what your experience has been like.
Writing Down Ideas As Soon As You Get Them
I tend to come up with ideas in the most random and inconvenient places, whether it’s the shower, in the car or on line at the grocery store. I’m not always able to write things down, so instead I end up forgetting about them altogether.
Gone are the days when I can rely solely on my memory. It’s imperative that I jot down my thoughts as often as I can. A great way to do this when you’re on the go is utilizing the memo notes app on your phone.
I’ve been trying to at least write down a few key words, so that later on when I’m home and in front of the computer, I can expand on those thoughts in further detail.
Some of you recommended creating lists for ideas, brainstorming in bullet points and diving deeper into each topic in order to keep my thoughts from meshing together.
I am easily distracted, by literally everything, and sometimes I don’t know how to shut off the outside world. I’ll just go ahead and admit it. My #1 distraction is my phone. I catch myself checking emails, sending texts and scrolling through my Instagram feed when I should actually be working or writing.
My mind is constantly on overdrive, so I tend to take little social media breaks for a day or two when I feel as though I am not being as productive as I should be. I’ll also go a few days without posting here on the blog and honestly, it helps! It ensures that I am not forcing my content.
It’s important to take breaks, in any form, when you need them the most. So put the phone away. Shut off the TV. Turn down the music. Do whatever you need to do in order to limit those distractions.
It’s important to get your blood flowing! I do notice that whenever I am working out or participating in some type of physical activity, my mind feels more relaxed. In those moments, I am not overthinking.
As I quoted at the beginning of this post, overthinking kills creativity.
Try to stay active consistently, whether it’s going for a short walk, taking a workout class or simply doing yoga from home. It’s a great way to channel your creativity differently, often leaving you with a fresh perspective. You might feel a sudden burst of inspiration.
On a related note, make sure that you are also fueling and hydrating your body throughout the day. I’ve noticed that this also makes a huge difference in the way that I focus.
Change Your Environment
If you work from home, then you know that there are both positives and negatives about it. It can actually be way easier to fall into a creative rut when you are constantly working in the same space. It’s important to get out of the house and give yourself a change of scenery.
Maybe this means finding a new coffee shop to sit down and write for a few hours. I personally love doing this. Or maybe it means you need to visit a new city or even take a weekend getaway. I often find that I am filled with new ideas and more clarity when I go somewhere different.
Get some fresh air. Drive around. Explore different parts of your town. Whatever you do, make sure you leave your designated working space and switch up the atmosphere.
I’m pretty sure that there are a lot more ways to overcome the dreaded writer’s block, but these tips were the ones that stood out to me the most. So tell me, what do you do when your thoughts don’t flow so freely on paper? I’d love to know, so share with me below.
No matter what, I hope you never stop writing!