When we think of writer’s block, we picture a solitary figure alone in a cabin trying to pen a novel. But writing can often feel just as challenging for marketers trying to get through a blog post, an ebook or other types of content creation. The only real secret to clear, consistent writing is to practice daily, but it’s important not to underestimate the importance of having the right environment before your fingers even touch the keys.
Have a comfortable set-up
The key to great writing often lies in the prosaic details. Writing is often framed as a fight of the mind. Fighting your body alongside of it won’t lead to the next great American novel, much less a decent blog post. If your fingers or wrists hurt after a long writing session, consider moving to an ergonomic keyboard. Seating is just as important. If you’re not fancy enough to have a treadmill/desk setup (and really, who is?) get a basic office chair with lumbar support.
Listen to what moves you
Whether it’s a mix of Kanye and Chopin or a single song on repeat for hours, everyone has a different auditory palate. Learn what works for you. Every time you notice a song as more than a background for your writing, skip it. You don’t need something that tempts your mind from the cursor; you need music that will simply live in the background.
Choose a single creative mantra
The dorms of collegiate writers are peppered with writing advice, usually from the likes of Ira Glass or Oscar Wilde. The really esoteric ones go for Anne Lamott. But, having the wisdom of 20 different people staring down at you isn’t inspiring—it’s overwhelming. Pick one mantra to get you through the process, whether it’s from a famous dead guy or something you wrote. Decide what writing roadblock you stumble over most, and write down a sentence or two that encourages you to overcome it.
Writing takes an immense reservoir of willpower. When you constantly allow yourself to give in to the distractions of Skype, Facebook and BuzzFeed, you’re draining your reserves. Remove yourself from temptation by installing productivity software and signing out of desktop apps. StayFocusd is a great Chrome extension that allows you to set how much time you’ll spend on time-wasting websites. The Nuclear Option allows you to block all sites for an hour at a time, which allows you to focus purely on your writing.
Give yourself your best chance of success on every project by ensuring that you’re free of distractions and you’re comfortable. These concerns may feel unimportant, but the only thing standing between you and that next great blog post could be a lousy keyboard or death metal.
Have you created the perfect space, but now need guidance on what to write? Download our Enterprise Blog Optimization Guide today!
Image credit: Holly Hayes