Whether you’re creating content for your blog or working on a new book, you’re got to admit something—writing, especially good writing—is hard. And it doesn’t help that we writers are usually somewhat perfectionist.
We all want to stand out, don’t we? To rise above the noise of this world and make an impact. We want our voices to be heard. But with all the clutter and grime in today’s society, how will we ever break through and shine?
Tip 1: Prepare
It’s hard to create good content without a plan. You need a roadmap—a way to navigate the twists and turns that show up on any creative venture. Whether you use an outline or simply write a few bullet points to keep on track, make sure you give yourself adequate time to prepare for the day’s work.
Tip 2: Declutter
Clutter comes in two forms: physical and mental. Whether it’s a messy desk or the distractions of social media, it’s time to clean out the proverbial cobwebs so you can get to work. You may not realize it, but these things will destroy your creativity.
Tip 3: Find a focus
One of the biggest things that’s keeping your writing from standing out is lack of focus. Each time you sit down to write a piece, ask yourself these four questions:
- Who is this for?
- How will it help or inspire them? (What problem will it solve?)
- How will they feel after reading it?
- What should they do next?
Tip 4: Get enough sleep
As writers, we’re prone to deprive ourselves of much needed sleep; convince ourselves we don’t need it. It’s not uncommon to find yourself working until midnight, but the truth is, lack of sleep is going to hinder your writing far more than giving up those extra few hours.
Tip 5: Exercise
The best content creators aren’t just sitting behind desks all day. Instead, they’re out working up a nice sweat. Staying active not only increases physical stamina, but adds to your mental health as well, allowing you to maximize your creativity. If you want your writing to really shine, maybe it’s time to visit the gym.
Tip 6: Develop a solid writing habit
Sporadic writing rarely turns out to be spectacular. You’ve heard it before, but if you want to get better: practice. Consistently. Even if it’s only a few hundred words per day, developing a good writing habit will help polish your voice.
Tip 7: Cut the fluff
We live in a busy world. Everywhere there’s noise and constant competition, and if you want to stand out–to rise above it–you’ve got to learn the art of brevity. Keep it short. Cut unnecessary modifiers or filler words and keep to the point.
Tip 8: Keep it simple
Somehow we get the idea complicated is better, but it’s a lie, and the result often resembles something like a tangled ball of string. Remember focus? In the end, it’s the simple, well-executed ideas that win the day.
Tip 9: Be aware of your atmosphere
It’s important to be in tune with your atmosphere: are there creative roadblocks present that may be hindering your work? If so, find a way to eliminate them.
Tip 10: Read
One of the secrets to becoming a great writer is to be a voracious reader. Be a consumer of great content—both fiction and non-fiction. If you’re a blogger, read other blogs. Explore. Expand your knowledge base and it will transform your writing.
Tip 11: Give yourself permission to be imperfect
Perfectionism kills creativity like nothing else. As creatives, we demand so much of ourselves and often end up feeling guilty for being unable to accomplish it. We become exhausted, frustrated, and discouraged. By giving yourself permission to be imperfect, you’re creating an opportunity for your best work to be born.
- Have you applied these tips to your writing? How have they helped?
- Which of these things do you find most challenging?
- Do you have any tips to add to this list?