Becoming an established writer is a long ride to pain and disappointment. We face a lot of rejections, deadlines, and even the most dreaded thing of all – writer’s block. Few are patient and committed enough to get through the ups and downs to build a successful career out of writing. Sadly, many give up when things become tougher for them to handle. We can’t blame anyone for giving up when things are not going as they want them to.
We can see the world right now – it’s moving at a faster pace than ever before. In the past, there were fewer blogs circulating the internet. This would mean one thing for your blog – gaining a lot of exposure without working so hard as there were few people to compete with at that time.
Currently, the blogsphere is expanding. Anyone can start a blog for free on WordPress or any other content management system with the qualification that they had something to share.
The amount of Information and stimuli we receive is increasing every day. Many that want to grow their blog quickly are forced to produce content in batches to keep readers coming and keep the numbers growing.
Consistency, a word that was alien to veteran bloggers, has somehow penetrated the blogosphere and has become a metric for Google. Writers are now judged by how often they publish on their blog. If by any chance you spend a month without posting, your blog traffic will decline terribly. And therefore, we keep creating.
Balancing the world’s constant need for information with our own needs is something few writers have thought about deeply. When was the last time you bothered to asking yourself very personal questions such: How are you doing? Or Have you been feeling energized?
As writers, we give to the world more than we receive, so in order for us to keep creating and producing content for others, we have to prioritize self-care in our writing routine.
Self-care is about paying attention to our physical, mental, and spiritual needs. However, Self-care is not about thinking of our needs while ignoring those of our loved ones. We should pay attention to our needs because it’s helpful in multiple ways.
1. Our inner critic
One reason self-care is valuable is that it helps you deal with your inner critic or manage negative self-talk. As writers, we are our biggest critics. Whenever we write something, we get the tendency to revise a lot. One of the reasons we do that is that we are not content with what we write, so we try to make it seem perfect.
However, self-care is learning that perfection is immeasurable, especially when it comes to creativity. Writing just like art is developing something from a mistake. A narrative that deviates from its apparent initial direction plot can be turned around to inspire a new plot. One of the best quotes I got from a friend was that a writer is a word weaver. You can turn a bad plot into something better.
2. Manage stress
Another reason self-care is valuable is that it helps you deal with stress that arises from the creative process. We are constantly creating something. It doesn’t matter what it is – It could be a poem, a story, or a blog post. Some of us write for media companies where we have to meet deadlines. Work deadlines are one of the main reasons some writers get stressed out. If you know how to manage your time and attention, you won’t be prone to stress.
3. Prevent loneliness that comes from isolation
Writing is a solitary activity. Aside from our loved ones, most of our time is spent alone with our thoughts. Distraction for some is a hindrance to creativity that’s why some creatives/ writers prefer to isolate themselves from others whenever they’re going to write.
Self-care is knowing that human beings are social animals and isolation contrasts that. Lack of interaction is harmful to one’s mental health. Therefore, be mindful of yourself as you write. Find time in between to talk to someone whenever you can.
4. Manage writer’s block
Who has heard of a writer that doesn’t experience writer’s block? If you have, I definitely need to meet them soon because I need to get some tricks from them. Writer’s block is a common occurrence for any writer.
According to the Wikipedia, writer’s block is a condition associated with writing where a writer is unable to produce new work or experiences a creativity slow down. There will be moments during your writing process, where you lack ideas but that doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with you. Sometimes you just need to take a break to refresh your brain to let in new ideas. Self-care might help you do that.
5. Handle critics
As writers, we are constantly faced with rejections and criticism from others. Rejection is a blow to one’s pride and ego and so is criticism. Some of us writers have a hard time putting our work online or even publishing a book because we’re afraid that people will say bad things about it. And so, we keep it from them so people won’t know about our existence.
One of the best advices I got about dealing with critics is to listen to their intention and decide if their feedback is destructive or constructive. If someone was just trying to pick a fight with you on the internet, the best thing you could do is not to give them your attention. I learned all this when I tried to pay attention to how I felt about what others said about my work and so can you.
6. Burnout and all its nasty side effects
Burnout for writers is where one endures prolonged stress from writing. When you’re so stressed out, you tend to feel exhausted every time you try to write. And worst of all, you get to a point where you start to lose interest with your passion. One of the main causes of burnout is extreme activity with a lack of work and life balance. If you notice this, you should try to take action.
7. A critical component in maintaining creativity
If you want to reconnect to your creative side, it’s important to have self-care as part of your daily routine. You need to be your number one cheerleader, supporter, confidant, and champion to fully unleash your creativity. You have to treat yourself with love, respect, kindness, and compassion if you want to share the best work to the world.
As writers, we have to stay connected to our creative side. But we can’t do that all the time, so we need to look after ourselves first before sharing what we have with others. We have to face the world head-on to get to where we want to be. All that matters at the end of the day is that we are healthy, happy, and contented with what we do.
Did you find this blog helpful? If there’s anything you’d like to share, feel free to leave a comment.