17 Helpful Things You Can Do When You’re Sick of Writing

When I was a young mother in my mid-20s, I had an epiphany while at the library with my pre-schooler and toddler. They were each occupied in their own reading/play areas, and I was building an armful of selections to check out for myself when it hit me: I could read and write all day, if that was a job.

Is that a “job?” I wondered.

It turned out, yes, pretty much, if by reading we mean research and self-education. And as for writing, well, I do get paid for that!

I can’t say it’s a direct write-for-pay scenario all the time, though. Not when you own your own business. Not when you’re a blogger. Not when you’re marketing your stuff online.

Nope. In all these areas, you write a lot of things you don’t trade for money:

  • Your website copy
  • Your blog posts
  • Guest posts
  • Your emails
  • Social media posts
  • Forum posts
  • Comments on other blogs
  • Your giveaways, tools, resources
  • Your bios and profiles for other sites
  • Your thank yous and other correspondence

In fact, you might end up paying others to write some of these items for you. Wise move, if you can’t do it, don’t know how, or have better things to do.

Now, as for me, I’ve always had a hard time ever having anyone write anything for me. I’m coming pretty close to thinking about hiring out for a few of these items, though, as long as I have supreme editing and veto power. But man, it will be hard. Especially for whomever I hire. LOL

You know what else is hard? Always being a writer writing about writing. Here’s why: I love writing whatever I want to write when I want to write it. But noooooo, that’s not really allloooowwwwwed, now is it?

The big pen to ZEN boss lady Faith makes me do marketing and community outreach and website updating zzzzzzzzzzz.

I have to write certain kinds of blog posts, because they’re good for the audience, not just anything I feel like because I’m in a grumpy mood.

Can I get a witness?

Any of you have a bloggy boss like me? (You know, a smart, hardworking one who makes you write all that stuff even when you’re sick of writing, if I do say so myself.)

I hope so. We need ourselves to lead ourselves. No one is doing this job for us! (Again, unless you hire me. Then forget all this. I don’t get sick of writing YOUR stuff, just my own. :-D)

However, I did write this post today to let you know, you’re not alone. It started with me realizing I didn’t feel like writing the post I had planned on my editorial calendar for today. Well, actually, yesterday. See, I put it off because I was sick of writing that kind of post.

There are some really productive people out there doing what we do, and they might always come to their topic supercharged and loving every word they pen, but mostly, I think we’ll find many more like us. We don’t always feel like it. Usually, I do it anyway. But sometimes I do something else instead. That can be okay too.

So here goes. I made a list of 17 Helpful Things You Can Do When You’re Sick of Writing. It is by no means exhaustive. Please add your own tips in the comments. I just got sick of writing the list. HAH!

  1. Most obvious: kick your own behind and write it anyway
  2. Have you overworked? If so, give yourself a break–take a day
  3. Commit to writing (as you should) but write your favorite idea
  4. Add something enjoyable to the deal: coffee, tea, wine, music?
  5. Re-read the most inspiring thing you’ve read lately, then write
  6. Go for your favorite kind of walk or do a cool bit of yoga, then write
  7. Get super sweaty, like look up HIIT at home, do 5 – 10 minutes, write
  8. Write something you didn’t plan on writing, at all (like I did here)
  9. Look at three great music videos and then write like a rock star
  10. Set a timer for 25 minutes and write, hard. Break for 5; Repeat till done
  11. Prepare the Spanglish Sandwich before you write, then enjoy both
  12. Call the person who will let you complain for 10 minutes, then write
  13. Clean the whole desk/workspace, spotless, then write effortlessly
  14. Set up, plan your end time for the writing, then stick to it
  15. Open up Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, read any page, then write
  16. Open Salman Rushdie’s Luka and the Fire of Life, read any page, write
  17. Find a gentle, playful animal. Resist its loving face, and write instead

This might seem like a quirky list, but you’ll have to trust me. They all work at some point.

Or pick a number, and try one on for size. Where will you begin?

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