I've deleted the introduction to this post four times already, and I've only been working on it for about sixty seconds.
This is the trouble I'm having with my blog at the moment.
I love blogging. I love reading blogs, I love putting together my own posts, I love creating something to be proud of. But lately I've been struggling.
It's not that I don't have things to write about. The inspiration is there, it's just that I seem to have a bit of a block when it comes to typing it up. My drafts folder is stuffed with half written posts.
I think I'm overthinking things. Rather than sitting down and just typing, I'm trying too hard. I'll have a great idea for a blog post, but I get stuck putting it into words and sentences and paragraphs. I worry that I'm losing what I wanted to be focusing on. Or as I get typing, the points I want to make keep expanding and cascading on and on, and suddenly I've got a long post that's almost impossible to follow.
Or sometimes I worry that I've made a point, but don't really have anything to back it up with. Maybe it's all my training in evidence-based practice, all the journal papers I've (kind of) read. Over the past five years, it's been completely drilled into me that everything needs backing up. Sometimes science rather stifles creativity.
So many of my drafts are opinion style pieces, but then I get concerned with balance. What if people disagree with my opinion?! What if they think I'm being too one-sided? So then I start trying to balance out my opinion and the whole post becomes some pointless, non-committed, sitting-on-the-fence waffle.
As blogs become brands and businesses, it's easy to get caught up in trying to turn an online diary into something of a one-person magazine, with posts becoming more of a 'feature' than a friendly chat.
When I'm struggling with my blog, I like to look to my favourite bloggers and think about what it is they do that keeps me coming back. Something I admire is the illusion of 'effortless' blog posts. While I'm sure all these bloggers are putting tonnes of effort into what they do, it's their casual style posts that entice me back again and again. They're not heavily researched articles. They're not essays. They're not magazine features. They simply seem to be the work of someone sitting down and just writing.
So that's what I'm trying to do. Care less, so that I can care more. Stop giving up on my posts before I even finished them. Accept rough drafts and refine them, rather than aim for perfection from the offset.
Hopefully that's just the boost I need to get back into the swing of things.
What are you top tips for blogger's block?