As writers, we are constantly looking for ideas. Sometimes, it feels like we can’t possibly come up with something else to write about. That’s when it’s a good idea to take a step back and care for ourselves. It means it’s time to start finding ways to practice self-care as writers.
In fact, writing becomes a form of self-care when we use it to explore thoughts and feelings. Journaling helps release worries and concerns, ask questions, identify opportunities for work and life —and that reflection leads to discovering unexpected ideas.
Writing for self-care can take on many forms, such as:
- creating a to-do list
- listing accomplishments
- numbering what we are grateful for
Practicing Self-Care for Writers
Another journaling idea is to use a single word as a prompt for a written reflection. For example, writing the word “creativity” at the top of the page and then writing about what it means to you, how and when you feel creative, and what else you could do to increase creativity in your life. In this type of writing, it is important not to edit. Just write down words as they come.
When you stop to edit—or even when checking the spelling—this could make you lose your train of thought. Since no one is going to read your journal, don’t worry about technical matters. First, focus on writing. Later, revisit what you wrote to identify ideas you may have come up with.
Journaling helps overcome writer’s block and come up with ideas.
Organization is both a form of self-care and a productivity tool. By organizing tasks, it is easier to know what needs to get done when and avoid wasting time or feeling lost. I organize myself by batching my writing, using spreadsheets to keep track of articles I’ve written.
Using checklists for pending tasks, and keeping separate lists of topics I can write about for my different roles as an editor, blogger, and professor. Keeping those roles in mind helps me visualize my reader for each topic and that helps me select appropriate vocabulary, set a tone, provide useful tips, format my articles, and stay within a certain word count.
Creativity is essential to a writer, but organization can be a guide.
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