Do you know that feeling you get when you sit down to write but you just can’t summon the will to start typing? You’re not alone. Every writer, from aspiring writers to successful writers, has those days when they’re staring at a blank page, waiting for inspiration to strike.
It’s hard to keep writing when motivation goes down. But an important part of being successful is to keep writing until you make it. Persistence is a key characteristic that separates successful authors from writers who never get anywhere.
“A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.” — Richard Bach
So if you find your motivation wavering, here are 10 simple ways to keep you productive.
1. Set achievable goals
There is nothing that demotivates more than having unattainable goals. Being realistic is the best way to stay productive and with your head held high.
Why? Because if you say that you are going to earn $10,000 dollars in a month, and you have never even reached $1,000, it is obvious that it will be difficult for you to achieve it. And if the month is ending and you haven’t been able to get anywhere near that goal, then you will feel sad and frustrated.
The best thing is to go step by step, you don’t want to run 10 kilometers if you haven’t run the first one yet.
Also, never set goals that you cannot control. You can control how much you write, or how much you publish, but you cannot control how many views you will have, so it is not worth focusing on that. Always put your mind on achieving goals that you can do.
2. Make writing non-negotiable
Finding time is making time. When you write every day at the same time, you will prepare your brain for that moment of the day. Therefore, finding a specific time of day in which you only focus to write will help you to always have your mind focused.
There are people who only write when they are motivated, the problem with this is that they can spend days and even weeks looking for motivation, and you will use it as an excuse for not doing what you really have to do.
Creating a writing habit is the best way to stay motivated and productive. Since you will make it part of your day until you eventually get used to it.
3. Attach another task to it
I'm always thinking about writing. In that way, I always writing titles and ideas that I could write when I have to. When you do other tasks while thinking about write, you will use your creative side of the brain to think of new ideas you can write.
For example, when you are talking with a friend, what topic could you write about this conversation? Most successful writers write articles about a conversation they had with a friend.
While doing basic household chores, like washing dishes or shopping, I think of ideas that I can write down, in this way I save time dedicated to writing just to write.
By doing this, you will increase your typing productivity by spending more time writing words on the page, rather than solving plot problems.
4. Track your victories
Sometimes I think that I’m not achieving anything writing. Those days I enter my stats, my comments, and my bank account. Then my mood begins to change.
When we keep in mind all that we have achieved, we feel motivated to be able to achieve more.
It is true that there are days when bad things happen to us or we are not lucky. But we cannot let those days define the long road we have traveled so far to reach our goals.
“Some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all — in which case, you fail by default.” — J.K. Rowling
Instead of thinking about our failures, let’s think about all the victories we have achieved and our spirits and productivity will change.
5. Maintain personal care
Sleep is an important part to stay creative and productive. Being productive when our body wasn’t able to properly rest overnight is an uphill battle and one that can have serious impacts on our productivity.
In the study, the researchers found that sleep deprivation makes it difficult for brain cells to communicate effectively, which, in turn, can lead to temporary mental lapses that affect memory and visual perception.
In other words, the findings offer clues as to why a sleepless night makes it so hard to think and concentrate the next day.
For that reason, go to bed early, rest, eat well, and then write. If you feel very exhausted, take that vacation you need and then come back with more strength to write.
6. Find a writer partner
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together” — African proverb
Having a writer partner will help you to stay active every day because it no longer depends on you, now you have somebody that will care about your goals too.
Some of the most successful creative writing projects stem from writing partnerships. When you write a script or a screenplay by yourself, you have full creative control. But working with a writing partner offers more opportunities that can make your project even better.
When you write by yourself, you don’t get feedback until you ask someone to read your script, but with a partner, you’ll get constructive criticism on your writing and ideas as you write
7. Always write about what you love
There is nothing that will kill a passion faster than writing about things you don’t enjoy just because you will generate more views. Having views can help you grow, but if it is not something you like, you will get tired quickly and you will not be able to take advantage of those views that they will give you.
Motivation and productivity are connected with passion. If you enjoy something, even Sundays will be days of working on what you want to achieve. So if you want to be motivated, start writing about the things you love and enjoy.
Also, you will always find more topics to talk about when you truly know a topic. Normally when we write about something just because it is a hot topic, we have to do a lot of research, while when we like something, the words just come out effortlessly.
8. Have a plan for every writing session
If you only sit down in front of your computer every day, without knowing what you are going to do, it will be difficult to write something with quality. Success is not about luck, is about hard work. Planning and execution.
For that reason, if you want to stay focused and productive, prepare something before start writing. What do you want to achieve today? which topic do you want to cover? How you are going to do it? Write all the things you need in order to create something good and then work on it.
Some days you can sit down and improvise, a lot of good ideas came from nothing. However, you approach planning, keeping a bit of a bird’s eye view of your task will help you control and structure how you spend your writing time more.
9. Give yourself something for every win
It is important to celebrate successes every step of the way. Remember, it’s about the journey as much as the end goal. If all you do is worry about the future, you will surely reach exhaustion first before success.
Give yourself a pat on the back for all those little victories, add up. And when you reach an important milestone, take time to acknowledge it. This reinforces that what you are doing is exciting and important, and gives you the opportunity to acknowledge those who have helped you along the way.
Plus, celebrating your accomplishments will help you stay motivated and focused so you can move on.
10. Avoid distractions
Avoid anything that prevents you from writing now. When the writing time arrives, put your cell phone aside, if possible turn off the internet and concentrate only on writing. This way your mind will only focus on one thing and produce more.
Scott Caan says Good things happen when you set your priorities straight. As simple as is sound, if your priority is to write, then focus on write. Discipline is choosing between what you want now and what you want the most.
Writing productivity is a combination of making sure you have the time and space to write, setting concrete goals, and being conscious about your methods and how effective they are for you to bring your goal closer.
Set concrete goals to increase your productivity, but choose goals that are realistic. If you’ve been tracking your progress for a while, you’ll have an idea of how much you can increase. Don’t expect to double your production in one or two weeks. If you normally write 500 words, just add 100 more every day.
What methods work for you?