How to Turn Writer’s Block into a Detour

The blog.  We started it.  And we were very excited about it until we hit the wall.

Writer’s block.  That moment where you sit at the computer because you know you haven’t posted a new blog, and you feel like you have nothing to write about.  One draft becomes two drafts.  Two become four.  And now there are eight half written posts sitting in the draft folder.

Why does it happen?  Is it because we’ve run out of words?  Impossible.  Is it fear?  Possibly.  Let’s face it.  We have a blog, and we want it to be interesting.  Any thought about it not being good can stop us from writing. Maybe we’re too focused on aiming to please?

Or maybe it’s because we feel we have nothing to write about.  Think about it.  Can that be true?  No.  It can’t.  All of us have something to write about.

Ask anyone who has written in a diary if they’ve ever experienced writer’s block.  My guess is all would say no.  Why?  Because when one writes in a diary or journal, he/she writes like no one is looking. It reminds me of that expression, “Dance like nobody’s watching.”  There’s freedom in doing things when we know what we’re doing isn’t for anyone else but for ourselves.

I’ve decided that I can’t be intimidated by writer’s block.  Just like I can’t be intimidated by the scale. If I’m exercising and the scale won’t budge, that’s not a time for me to cry and give up on exercising.  Trust me, I’m there right now. It’s a time for me to discover new ways that will help me reach my goal.

It’s the same thing when it comes to writing.  Moving past the block is like hitting a detour. I can sit in front of the sign and not move.  Or I can take another route and keep moving.

Questions that can help get through writer’s block:

What happened today?
If you ask yourself this question, it might help you find the topic of the day.  Maybe it was a phone call. Or maybe it was a personal problem.  How did it make you feel?  Did you learn anything from it? What can you do to encourage others through that same experience?

What inspires you?
Is it sitting in the backyard or is it putting on your cozy robe with a hot cup of coffee or tea at your desk?  If it’s a song, play it.  If it’s looking out the window, pull up the shades.  If it’s a candle, light it.

Who inspires you?
God? Yourself? A teacher? A mentor? A stranger?  Talk!

Just the other day I got a phone call from a little old lady.  When she told me her husband’s age and told me that they were married for 63 years, I asked her to tell me something about those 63 years.  And I could tell she was smiling as she told me about the first day they met. Her story inspired me to write about love and wisdom.

Think Outside the Box
I met someone the other day. She was a teacher and she told me she wanted to write, but she didn’t have the time and desired to do it after she retired.  I encouraged her and asked if she ever thought about recording herself.  With wide open eyes, she thanked me.

A couple of months later, we ran into each other at a store.  She hugged me as if we were old friends. She thought she didn’t have a way of doing what her heart desired, but thinking outside the box was exactly what she needed.

Nothing really is Something
Nothing means “not a thing.” The simple solution to breaking through writer’s block is to write about something even if it’s nothing because if you have nothing to write about, you have something.  You might need to read that again.  Go right ahead.  See.  Right now, I’m writing about something when it’s nothing at all.

And that, my friend, is what gets me through. It’s knowing that the block isn’t the end.  It’s the beginning of a different route to get me where I’m going.

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