Have you ever found yourself staring at your computer screen and not able to type a single word? It’s like, “swoosh”, all of a sudden, what you’ve learned for all these years, books you’ve read, and things you’ve been through, just vanish into thin air.
No matter how hard you’ve tried, you just can’t think of anything worth putting into words. It’s desperate, I know. But, hey! Welcome to the world of writing blocks. Get ready for some adventures.
Writing block occurs when you fail to produce new work or experience creative slowdown. It has nothing to do with your writing skills whatsoever, and it happens all the time.
So what can you do when you suddenly find yourself reaching a dead end? Here are three methods that are frequently used to help yourself out of the woods.
Common ways to overcome writing block
Before we jump into those methods, the first thing you need to do is stay calm. You experience it once, you’ll always experience it the next time. So don’t worry. Think of it as a friend who likes to drop by from time to time.
Now, let’s move on to these methods you can use to help smash your writing block.
Read, a lot
You can always read books written by others to get inspired. After all, “There are a thousand Hamlets in a thousand people’s eyes”, said our beloved Shakespeare. When you see through others’ eyes, most of the time, you’ll get a different perspective.
Another great way to overcome writing blocks is to write down anything that comes into your mind. Don’t think for a second if it’s too boring to write, or if you’ve made a grammatical mistake. Many times, it’s exactly these negative thoughts that block your mind from new ideas.
Enjoy other forms of creativity
Apart from reading and writing, you can also try something else that is creative, such as painting, singing, cooking, etc. You may have bumped into a writing block, but that doesn’t mean you’d lose your creativity in other areas.
But what if you’re in a hurry to meet a deadline, and you don’t have enough time to try these methods one by one?
Have you considered mind mapping? This will save you the trouble. And it’s actually a combination of the above three methods. You don’t believe it? I’ll tell you why.
How does a mind map work?
A mind map visualizes your ideas and concepts to help you relate, remember and recall information, and it usually consists of the following steps:
Instead of writing complete sentences, you only need to put keywords here. The latter sounds much easier, right? You just write down the very first word that comes into your mind and your mind will automatically start generating new ideas.
Anyone can draw a mind map. After you jot down some keywords, you have to make connections by linking one word to another to present your thoughts more logically. And there shouldn’t be any fixed structure for a mind map as to how personalized it can be when you create one.
Even if it’s easier to draw a mind map than, say, writing an essay, you still can suffer from the lack of new ideas. This is when you need to read, not just books, but anything you can read with your eyes, and see if you can relate some to your keywords.
When you finish your mind map, you’ll be amazed by the number of ideas you’ve come up with. A mind map helps you to think divergently, so you’ll go beyond what’s obvious, and reveal what’s underneath. And that’s usually where you can find treasure, the treasure of creation.
Traditionally, a mind map is generated with pen and paper. Nowadays, we have all sorts of devices, phones, laptops, etc., at hand that can create a mind map for us. Luckily, now you have dozens of mind map software or apps to help you. Effie is one of them.
Effie helps to generate mind maps in an instant. Just one click on the button, and you’ll get a neatly designed mind map.
Effie provides five mind map modes for you to choose from. Also, you can edit on your mind map directly, and the content will sync automatically to ensure you don’t get distracted by other things but focus on your ideas only.
Apart from that, Effie also provides a distraction-free environment for writing as she cares about your thoughts. Mind mapping and writing can be done in just one single software. Try it, and you’ll have a wonderful writing experience with Effie. She is cross-platform, so you can write anytime, anywhere, on any device.
Tempted to give it a go? Click here to download one for your device and start smashing that writing block!