Beating Blogger Block: Tips to Keep Your Blog, Business, and Brain Always Fresh and Alive

On December 8, 2010, wrote:

We all get it from time to time: blogger’s block. Like we’ve completely run out of ideas for our blog or website. Like we’ve completely run out of time. Drinking gallons of coffee to no avail; staring at a blank screen for hours; pressing “Save Draft” over and over when, sadly, there isn’t really any “draft”.

And with the onset of this “writerly” disease, we wonder: will traffic go down? Will readers soon unsubscribe? Will my online presence suffer from this inability to generate creative, engaging blog content? What about my business? Have I turned into a vegetable? It’s a scary thought, especially considering that one of the best ways to gain visibility, name or brand recognition, and search-engine love in this information-crazy world is to write or blog as best as you can.

Calm down. Throw your worry about your writing room window. And beat blogger’s block by following these great tips below:

Keep an idea journal. You never know when the idea and inspiration for a good blog topic will strike. Maybe it’s in the taxi, on your way to a meeting. Maybe it’s in your daily commute to the office. Maybe it’s on a trip to the toilet at 3 in the morning. Wherever it does happen, be sure you’re prepared for that moment. Carry a notebook around and use it as an idea journal. If you’re not that old-fashioned, try the Evernote app, which allows you to remember everything.

Change locations. Blog – or at least try to – in a place apart from the usual study room table, living room, or office desk. A change of scenery just might be for the better, opening your eyes up to ideas that were elusive in all too familiar settings. Blogging locations include: coffee shops, public libraries, your own backyard, friends’ houses, or a bench on the public park. Wherever it is, remember to have your laptop battery fully charged.

Take questions. Want to identify with your readers, visitors, and potential customers? Ask them questions. Let them tell you the things they consider most interesting. Ask them which topics they would want you to cover next. You can do this by writing a brief blog post that calls for readers to ask. There’s also a neat tool called Formspring, which is great for generating queries via Facebook and Twitter.

Read. I personally believe that you can only write as much as you read. So train yourself to write or blog and build on your knowledge by visiting the nearest bookstore, reading other blogs, and searching curiously and carefully for what others in your niche are talking about.

Get rid of distractions. If you want to beat blogger’s block, you have to have razor-sharp focus. Turn off that TV, put your mobile phone on silent, stop streaming Pandora, and exit that twittering TweetDeck app. Clear your mind up for some epic blogging mojo. If you want, you can even use something like Writeroom (Mac) and Dark Room (Windows) to literally eliminate the distractions off your desktop.

Sign up for Google Alerts. If you’re really running out of ideas, there’s always the search engine. With Google Alerts, you can monitor the Web for interesting new content that’s related to the things that matter to you. Keep tabs on business trends, your competitors, the hottest stories related to your industry – and then have all of these delivered to your E-mail inbox.

Back yourself up with the cloud. As mentioned above, you never know when and where inspiration will strike. While you’re waiting, back yourself up using cloud-based services like Google Docs or Dropbox. Syncing and storing your files online will at least give you instant access to your files and folders in cases when ideas for a blog topic do arrive.

Comment on others’ blogs. These comment threads and discussions can easily turn into an engaging conversation that has you waiting and wanting to expand your own thoughts into a blog post. So use that as your starting point: your one-line comment can turn into a multi-paragraph post that provokes a new set of reactions and interactions.

Still looking for inspiration? Be sure to check out these related links:


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