Ever sat in front of a blank screen or a blank paper? Ever felt like you are unable to think even the slightest of things? You are not all alone in this. It happens with every writer. This is what we call writer’s block. Want to know more about what is writer’s block? Let me tell you, this is just the blog you were looking for.
From journalists to novelists, everyone has to deal with writer’s block. But what is writer’s block actually? It sounds easy but is difficult to handle. It is not a laughing matter. Moreover, it can lead you to be unable to write for days, weeks, or even months.
The least you can do is ignore it and learn ways to avoid it. Continue reading to get details about what is writer’s block, what causes writer’s block, and so on.
Table of Contents
What is writer’s block ?
In the 1940s, American psychologist Edmund Bergler created and popularized the term “writer’s block.” Writer’s block is a problem that affects authors and is accurately characterized as an overpowering sense of being trapped in the process of writing, unable to move forth and produce fresh work.
It is a momentary or long-term reluctance to put words on a page. It can strike any writer, even if only for just an hour or a day or two, but it becomes a significant issue when the writer is unable to meet deadlines or complete a piece of writing.
It is a painful condition that is often to overcome. However, there’s always a way to do things. We will also discuss how to get rid of writer’s block here. But before that let’s cover the basics.
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What causes writer’s block ?
Writer’s block can be caused by a variety of factors, depending on the person. Some feel that writer’s block is caused by inadequate creativity or even intelligence. However, this isn’t always the case. Writer’s block is exacerbated by self-doubt.
Listed below are some common factors that cause writer’s block. Check them out!
The fear of being judged. The fear of being rejected. The fear of being out of the competition. The fear of receiving criticism. The fear of not living up to the expectations. All these are common fear any writer has. The fear within you is one of the main causes of writer’s block. This is the major reason a writer fails to succeed.
Perfectionism is great. But at times where you are bound to make mistakes. This habit can come out as an obstacle. You can’t assume everything to just fall at places perfectly without even putting effort. Does it sound fair? No. Moreover, it’s perfect in your head but it couldn’t come out. And you are stuck at correcting it. As a result, your work doesn’t progress ahead.
Some writers believe that there’s nothing as bad timing. If you have skills you can start writing anywhere and at any time. However, this is what overconfidence is all about. Psychologically proven, there are multiple times in a day when your mind doesn’t work. It’s just not the appropriate moment to write right now. It’s possible that you’ll let your concepts simmer for a bit longer until putting them down.
As stated earlier, a perfect time and desirable place to write is not a myth. If you sit in a noisy place and expect your brain to drop out ideas like a flow. You are highly mistaken there. Not just the surroundings, but also if you have other responsibilities to look after, your writing will naturally take a back seat. Your writing is not free for undivided attention. Lack of concentration leads to writer’s block.
Burnout is common in humans. We cannot fully complete everything with full capacity all the time. Our body and mind need rest and refreshments regularly. The continuous activity makes our brains go numb and thus resulting in writer’s block. Having a fresh mind will help you kick writer’s block in seconds.
Even after a major success, many prominent writers have had writer’s block. In many cases, their first hit was personal and enjoyable, but they felt pressured to write a sequel that was as excellent as or better than the first, which resulted in major analytical paralysis. You can control those excessive expectations no matter how much or how little you’ve written before by working to make writing pleasant for you and quieting your self-criticism.
Apart from the aforementioned, other causes like medical conditions, anxiety, personal problems, having too many or too few ideas give birth to this phenomenon.
What are the symptoms of writer’s block?
Writer’s block is only unexpected to those who are unaware of the advance warning symptoms. However, having prior knowledge of what is writer’s block and what are the symptoms of writer’s block is essential.
But is it a disease to have symptoms? Well, for a writer it is! For a writer, writing is the most powerful weapon. And when something stops them to do that, we call it a ‘serious problem’.
What are the symptoms of writer’s block you ask? It hits everyone differently. However, the following are some common symptoms.
The brain goes blank
You can go utterly blank when trying to come up with something to write about. Your mind may seem as if it has entirely closed down after only a few words have been put down. The most you can think about is silence in your brain and the reality that you don’t have a single idea to elaborate on.
If writing is an integral part of your academic or job life, you will have to face consequences. You won’t be able to come up with creative ideas. Your projects and assignments will witness a backlash. Your inability to meet deadlines will have a negative impact on your career.
Since you are unable to do your work properly, you will start feeling frustrated. this irritability can trigger a stress reaction in the body, leading to a decline virtuous cycle that worsens the condition.
You will start feeling anxious every day you end up with a blank page. Your mind will be preoccupied with your worry of not being able to write and its consequences ahead. Even if you try to take some rest or think about other things, you will miserably fail.
Lack of inspiration and focus
One of the major symptoms of writer’s block is having issues focusing. You may very well have weak focus if your thoughts regularly drift away from the subject you’re writing on. It can be tough to complete a phrase, much less a page if you don’t even have any motivation for the topic you’re writing upon. Trying your hardest to remain interested might go a long way towards avoiding the block.
Muscle contraction, headaches, and digestive issues are common physical indicators of stress. Stress comes in handy with writer’s block and is also a symptom of the same. When you’re attempting to write or think about composing, you can notice that your symptoms get much worse.
These are the common symptoms that have been observed around. However, you might also experience some different signs. Knowing it at the earlier stage and taking measures to eradicate the problem is as beneficial as a balanced diet for a healthy lifestyle.
Want to know how to get rid of writer’s block? Stay and read…
Tips on how to get rid of writers block
Talk it out
Until and unless you speak about your problem, it will kill you inside. That may result in some other disease. It’s better you talk to a trusted person, be it your colleague or a dear friend or a senior or anybody. Having a second opinion on your work from somebody you believe can be a terrific strategy to increase new insight.
Do some physical activity
Your brain has frozen sitting long hours in front of your screen. If you’re already having trouble writing for a period, your subconscious may have begun to equate your usual environment with your reduced productivity. Go for a walk. Do some sports. Practice dance or exercise regularly. You will start feeling fresh and motivated to work.
Plan out a timetable
Bad timing or the wrong environment also causes the block. Therefore, choose your most active hours of the day. Analyze whether you are comfortable writing daily or on alternative days. Prepare your writing routine accordingly. Add some non-writing activities, rest, entertainment, and sleep so that your brain doesn’t burn out due to workload.
Change your strategies
When experiencing a block while writing you need to transform your strategies. Avoid getting everything perfect, always remember you learn most from your mistakes. Don’t stop writing. Write whatever comes to your mind. At a point when you feel like removing your hands from the keyboard, push yourself to the most extent. Read others’ work or anything that excites you. Remove distractions. This way you can cope up with the issue.
What do you do when your fridge is filled with food items? You probably start cleaning it by either eating or disposing of the unnecessary ones. The same goes with your mind. Your brain cluttered. It needs to relax. When it comes to relaxing, meditation is the key. Relaxation redirects brain function away from the nucleus accumbens, allowing the cortex to be more creative. You shouldn’t need special equipment, but the advantages are enormous! You can become calm and also more serene by focusing on your breath for as little as 10 minutes every day. Furthermore, meditation practice necessitates the absence of thought. That’s why, once you’ve finished, you’ll notice a torrent of thoughts filling your mind.
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And we come to an end…
Realize that if you have writer’s block, you are not alone – many people share your frustration. Fortunately, over time, you will find solutions and coping strategies that help you get past the problem.
Also, varying from person to person the causes and symptoms can change. It’s up to you how you overcome this issue. The only thing we suggest is to not panic when you experience something like this. It happens!
Irrespective of how skilled a writer you are, there will be times when your mind refuses to cooperate. Do not hesitate to use the above tips to overcome the block. Have faith in yourself and you can do anything and everything.
See you in the next blog with another interesting and helpful topic. Till then, KEEP WRITING!