Whether you’re a musician, a writer or an artist, writer’s block is something that all creatives face. It’s a mental state in which your brain struggles to create something new—even if you’re experienced in your craft. Writer’s block can affect your ability to get started on a project, or it can cause you to struggle to finish one.
Writer’s block happens for many reasons, be it a lack of inspiration, an inability to focus or simply not knowing where to start. Whatever the reason, writer’s block can be an incredibly frustrating thing to deal with—especially if you have deadlines to meet.
The good news is that there are plenty of ways to overcome these obstacles and get back on track. If you’re struggling to put pen to paper, here are 13 practical ways to overcome writer’s block:
- Take A Break
- Work On Something Else
- Eliminate Distractions
- Place Yourself In A Productive Environment
- Simplify Your Task By Setting Specific Goals
- Reference Other People’s Work
- Set A Timer
- Have A Tea Or Coffee
- Eat A Good Meal
- Give Yourself Permission To Write Something Badly
- Listen To Music
- Have A Good Night Sleep
Without further ado, let’s get started!
1. Take A Break
A common cause of writer’s block is a lack of energy—sometimes all you need to do is to take a short break. When you’re feeling tired or run down, it can be difficult to think clearly and focus on your work. If this is the case, take some time to re-energize yourself by stepping away from your desk. This will give your brain some time off so that when you come back to work, you will feel fresh and rejuvenated.
2. Work On Something Else
If you’re trying to overcome writer’s block, take a break from from the project you’re working on and work on something else. Instead of giving up on work altogether, spend some time working on another project or task that needs to be done. This will keep the momentum going but also take your mind off the project that you are stuck on.
3. Eliminate Distractions
An effective way to beat writer’s block is to eliminate distractions from your working environment. This could mean turning off your phone, shutting the door or closing other windows on your computer. Removing these temptations will help you focus on what you are trying to achieve and give you a better chance at overcoming that pesky writer’s block.
4. Place Yourself In A Productive Environment
A sure-fire way to avoid writer’s block is to work in a productive environment. Find a space where you can stay motivated and inspired. Perhaps this is at your place of work surrounded by other productive people or the office space in your home. For many people, separating work from home can eliminate the temptation to relax and procrastinate.
5. Simplify Your Task By Setting Specific Goals
Simplifying your project into smaller, bit-sized steps can be a great way to overcome writer’s block. This will help you see what’s really involved in accomplishing your goal and make it feel far more manageable. You may find that smaller tasks feel much easier to achieve than trying to tackle the entire project at once.
6. Reference Other People’s Work
If you are struggling with writer’s block and in need of some inspiration, try referencing other people’s work. Using this method will help you get unstuck as you’ll be able to see how someone else approached the same problem. Looking at other people’s work can also provide you with new ideas or ways to improve upon existing projects.
7. Set A Timer
If you’re faced with writer’s block, try setting a timer and forcing yourself to write for that amount of time. The key is that you can’t allow yourself to get distracted by anything else during that time period—it gives you a set amount of time to push through your writer’s block before you can reward yourself with a short break.
8. Have A Tea Or Coffee
When you’re suffering from writer’s block, nothing beats a cup of tea or coffee. Studies have shown that caffeine from tea and coffee can help improve your focus and concentration, which makes it easier to work more efficiently and effectively. Tea can also reduce stress, which is another way to boost energy and get your mental gears turning.
It’s no secret that exercising is good for your health, but did you know it’s also a great way to combat writer’s block? Going for a run, doing some yoga or even just walking can help put you back into a creative and productive mindset. In addition to helping you focus, exercise can help you sleep better, feel happier and reduce anxiety.
10. Eat A Good Meal
Eating a balanced meal before you start working is one of the best things you can do to combat writer’s block. It will help keep your energy levels up while also helping to avoid that groggy feeling that comes from skipping a meal. Staying hydrated is important too—drink plenty of water throughout the day to help you keep focused.
11. Give Yourself Permission To Write Something Badly
Sometimes forcing yourself to create can help you overcome writer’s block, even if it’s low quality. Often this method can help kickstart the creative process again and help you to move forward with your work. After doing this routinely, you may find it easier to get ideas out of your head and get back into a rhythm.
12. Listen To Music
For some people, listening to music while working can be a distraction but for others, it can help them get into the zone. If you find yourself being distracted by the sounds around you or by your own thoughts, then consider putting on headphones and turning on some music.
13. Have A Good Night’s Sleep
To get the most out of your creative time, try to get a good night’s sleep every night. A lack of sleep causes your brain to work more slowly and you will likely have more trouble focussing and being productive. However, when you’re well-rested, your brain can create and process new ideas much more easily than when it’s tired.
What Causes Writer’s Block?
Writer’s block is a fact of life for everyone, no matter how much you love to create. It’s frustrating, demoralizing and can really get in the way of being able to create your best work. Writer’s block is a common part of the creative process, so don’t be discouraged if you feel like you’re going through it alone.
Writer’s block happens for many reasons, but the most common are:
• A lack of inspiration—sometimes you just don’t have anything to say
• An inability to focus due to external factors (like stress)
• A lack of motivation
• Mental fatigue or sleep deprivation
• A fear of failure
• A lack of knowledge on a subject
Want To Know More?
Here at Live Aspects, we have dozens of useful lessons and tutorials created to enhance your music production skills and help speed up the learning process. You can access our huge range of music theory lessons and production tips and tricks here.