Writer’s block is a bitch.
Not having anything to write about makes the process of writing painful. I was chatting to another writer today who had a vulnerable article go viral. The backlash in the comments section stopped him from writing.
Every time he sits down to write, he can’t. His writing muscles are dead inside from the crowds of Twitter users who beat the inspiration out of him. As a content creator, it’s easy to stop.
There are lots of hidden problems that will hunt you down and screw up your ability to sit in a quiet room and write. I’ve suffered from many of the same problems. What helped me was this:
“Everything is content.”
When You See Everything in Your World as Content You Create Differently
You don’t look for inspiration. You become the inspiration.
This is the power of deciding to live in a world where everything is content. It’s easier to become an ideas machine. You can come up with story ideas much faster. You can sit there and write rather than sitting there and thinking about what to write.
The trick is this:
Take what you see in your world and make it helpful to someone else. Many content creators take this idea and accidentally create self-obsessed content or journal entries.
Your life is full of content. What’s useful about that content for the audience?
Small Ideas Are the Ones That Get Read the Most
— Not the gigantic ideas that are just your ego talking.
It’s small ideas that people can relate to. If you write about sending spaceships to Mars only a small fraction of the audience will understand or care. But if you write about a breakup, quitting an addictive habit or having a bad day then everyone can relate. See the difference?
The trick is this:
Small content ideas are scattered all throughout your life. The key is to email these small ideas to yourself when you have them.
Every Conversation Is the Seed of Great Content
You know what sort of content people love? Stories.
After creating thousands of pieces of content online for the past six years I’ve found people love conversations too. Creating content that features a conversation you’ve been a part of or heard is compelling to the audience.
Conversations are relatable. Consuming content that contains conversations helps the audience have a similar conversation with themselves in their head.
The trick is this:
You don’t need to transcribe every part of the conversation in your story. You can simply abbreviate or capture the main parts. The words of the conversation won’t be exact because you don’t have a perfect brain with perfect memory.
Capture a conversation and share it as content, so you can capture the audience’s imagination.
Don’t Romanticize over the Idea of Writing
What destroys the “everything is content” mindset is romanticizing over what you’re going to write.
Start creating the content around your idea. Don’t try and predict whether it will be enjoyed by an audience — or worse, makes you money.
You don’t have a superpower that determines if people pay you for your content. Predicting virality is random, unless you possess the power to control people’s minds. If you do, please use your power to amplify my writing. Thanks.
The trick is this:
The best idea you have is the one in your head right now.
Most of the content you create will be a giant flop. Let that idea stop you from searching for love in your own content.
Your Idea That Changes the World Won’t Be the One You Think It Will Be
That’s the brutal truth content creators need to hear. It’s a truth that will set your creativity free.
I have had many pieces of content go viral over the last six years and I don’t tell you that to brag or pretend I’m better than you. I’m definitely not.
I tell you that fact because a few pieces of content did end up changing the world in a tiny way.
One piece of content stopped a man from taking his life. Another piece of content birthed a whole new era of content creators who write on this platform and didn’t think they could. Another piece of content described how money works in an entirely different way.
None of these pieces that helped people were obvious to me. They all came as a complete shock, and in a way, that’s the best thing about creating content and releasing it into the world.
Content can change you too
Content can change the world in some tiny way; it can always change who you are.
A story about how I changed my life became the start of a career as a content creator, and the catalyst for me to defeat mental illness once and for all. Another piece of content helped me earn a few dollars. Those dollars led to the idea “maybe I could be an entrepreneur again” after failing so many times and giving up. Another piece of content made me see I was a spoilt brat and needed to change my behavior.
Your life changes when you apply the “everything is content” mindset to how you see and show up in the world.
You Have Limitless Content Ideas Inside of You
That’s the thought I want to leave you on.
When you see the world as full of content, waiting for you to capture it and share it with an audience, you stop looking hard for ideas. You realize all the content ideas you need to bring meaning and fulfillment into your life are right in front of you.
Take this new habit and create content about it. Take something you learned and break it down step by step. Take a difficult moment in your life and find one takeaway in it that could be helpful to a stranger. Take a high point in your life and see if you can find a way to make it a high point in someone else’s life.
Your life is full of content. All you have to do is sit down and create it.