Have you ever sat down to write but the words just won’t come? Does the thought of writing leave you feeling overwhelmed or anxious? Maybe you know you need to write that new blog post for your blog but you convince yourself you don’t have time.
If you can relate to any of those things, chances are you’re struggling with writer’s block.
So, what is writer’s block?
Well, it’s pretty much exactly as it sounds; Feeling stuck or unable to write.
Whether because of burnout or feeling uninspired, experiencing writer’s block can leave you feeling defeated. Which, if we’re being honest, does nothing to help the creative process!
The thing is, no one is immune to writer’s block. Freelance writers, novelists, and copywriters all experience it at some point. Creative blocks can affect just about anyone in a creative field. From writers to designers to artists, everyone can feel stuck from time to time.
While everyone overcomes writer’s block in their own way, I’ve found there’s one super simple method that works almost every time. The best part? It’s easy! In fact, some might say it’s too easy.
Ready to learn my super simple secret for overcoming writer’s block as a freelance writer?
How Freelance Writers Can Overcome Writer’s Block
The one thing that helps me beat writer’s block 99% of the time is to…
Just start writing.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re here because you have writer’s block. Meaning, you’re having trouble writing. I can see how my solution doesn’t make a lick of sense.
But, bear with me.
Sometimes, the biggest contributor to writer’s block is overthinking.
I recently read a great book called, Calm the F*ck Down by Sarah Knight. There were a lot of great nuggets of wisdom sprinkled throughout the book but there’s one quote that has really stuck with me.
“Overthinking is the antithesis of productivity”
This couldn’t be truer! As creative people, we are often our biggest critics. Before we’ve even written a single word, we’ve already started to doubt ourselves. We get so caught up in the figuring how to write that we talk ourselves out of just beginning. The more we contemplate it, the harder it seems to start.
We need to stop overthinking and trust our abilities.
Be Okay With a Shitty First Draft
Have you ever read Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott? In it, she talks about the need to let go of perfection and be okay with writing a “shitty first draft.” Getting the words on the page is the first step to creating any piece of writing, great or otherwise.
What you write or how well you write it doesn’t matter. It can always be edited later. Eventually, your shitty first draft will turn into a brilliant final draft. You just have to start writing.
Use the Pomodoro Technique
When you’re struggling with writer’s block it can be really hard to stay focused. If that’s the case, working for short bursts of time can help. My favorite method is to use the Pomodoro Technique. The goal is to work steadily for 25 minutes without any distractions.
Put your phone on silent. Turn off the TV. Heck, disconnect the WiFi if you have to! Then set a timer for 25 minutes and get to writing that shitty first draft. Once the timer goes off, you can take a short 10 or 15 minute break before starting again.
More often than not, once you’ve started you’ll find yourself becoming more motivated. You’ll be able to work for longer stretches of time without needing a break. The best part? Before you know it, you’ll have beat your writer’s block!
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Katie Jenison is a freelance writer offering copywriting, blogging, and ghostwriting services. She works closely with home builders, remodelers, interior designers, real estate and property management professionals to help them create content marketing strategies, improve their digital presence, generate leads, and engage with their target audience. Katie also helps freelance writers and creative entrepreneurs pursue their dreams of working from home by providing tips and advice, business strategies, and writing tips on her blog, The Quiet Type. Download her free workbook, A Freelancer’s Guide to Setting Rates, here.