I have to admit it. I have been struggling lately. I have this dreadful condition. Just awful. It is debilitating. A roadblock of sorts.
As a newly established blogger/writer, I am calling it “writers block” but the “writers” part of the block is just the way it is manifesting itself this time. So, before you stop reading because you may not be a writer and think this doesn’t somehow relate to you, understand that though this condition may seem specific to writers, it actually happens to most of us at various points in our life. Here are some of my symptoms:
Has this ever happened to you? This typically happens to me during times of change or transition.
Loss of a job, change in marital status, a move to a new town, a milestone birthday are a few examples that can prompt these symptoms. I am certainly going through a transition now as my youngest is off to college and life has changed significantly and the last few months have been less than routine. I have been out of sorts. And my blog has taken a hit.
So, I stop writing. The fear takes over. The paralysis sets in.
When I first started writing I found it exhilarating. No expectations, no pressure. And people started reading and reading. And then it got into my head.
I realize this happens in other aspects of my life. I think back to when I took up golf. I picked up a club and hit the ball. It felt good when I made contact and I had no expectations and was so carefree. And then it got into my head. “Hold your club this way, don’t move your body, keep your head down. If you can just make this putt you will have the best score ever.” The thoughts, doubts, insecurities took over and affected my performance.
So, I am calling my problem writers block because I write a blog and have seen my blog most affected. Truth be told it has affected many aspects of my life. I put pressure on myself to figure out everything – my next project, my next move with this sense of immediate urgency and again it leads to just one jumbled mess.
We all have some types of “blocks” in our lives that trip us up. We can be our own worst enemy at times.
Well, the first step is admitting you have a problem.
The next step is addressing it. Sometimes it takes me a while to get to this step. My mind races. I have too many thoughts. I need to work things out in my own time. There is a fine line between a reasonable amount of time to re-group and getting stuck in neutral, not being able to focus and move forward.
I find writing helps me sort things out. The very thing I haven’t been able to do. So I begin to write and as I do I begin to understand the steps I need to take to recover from my condition.
Giving advice is the easy part. Taking my own advice the hard part. So, here goes.
What works for you?
For me, it is listening to music, taking a walk, putting myself in an environment free of distractions. It really does help me clear my mind.
The author Charles Bukowski says, “Writing about a writer’s block is better than not writing at all”.
So, that is what I will do. I will get back on the horse, so to speak and write. Again.
The other stuff will eventually sort itself out in due time.