How to Refuel Your Creative Spark for Blogging

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You start a blog and it’s fresh and new and exciting. But it doesn’t stay that way forever.

Sooner or later,  your creativity starts to wane. Here’s what to do when you feel blah about blogging.

In the beginning, you have so many ideas that you can crank out 5 blog posts a week.

Every time you hit “Publish,” you can’t fight the desire to just stare at your words on the screen.

In other words, you’re in the honeymoon stage of blogging.

And then, something shifts.

All of your ideas seem to have flown away, and the ones you wrote down during your honeymoon period don’t seem all that exciting anymore.

You start to wonder, Why am I doing this anyway? It takes a ton of time and no one is reading my posts.

Yeah, I’ve been there.

The suckiness is completely normal. But you still have to get through it and keep blogging consistently.

Otherwise, you will start to blog less and less. 5 times a week will turn to once every other week, and then once a month.

Soon your blog will be a thing of the past.

You really can get through it and start to love blogging again. I promise. Here are a few suggestions for pushing your way through your blogging funk.

1. Get away from your blog.

Go on a blogging fast. This means no blogging, no checking your stats, no sharing on social media. No blog. Period.

Get out.

Go to the park with a book and a blanket and stare up at the sky like you’re a kid again.

Go out for a dinner and movie with friends and force yourself to leave your smartphone in the car. Because if you bring it, you know you’ll be sneaking a look at your stats in the bathroom.

When you get away from your blog, you will start to love it again. You’ll be refueled.

Blogging is a creative process that takes a lot of energy. So you actually NEED to refuel once in awhile.

A few days (or a week) away from your beloved blog and you’ll actually look forward to hanging out with it again.

2. Fall in love with someone else’s blog (or blogs).

My creativity goes away really fast when I am way too focused on my pageviews and shares. Basically, when I start to worry about whether other people like me.

That didn’t work in middle school, and it sure as hell doesn’t work now.

What better way to get out of that trap than to start showing some other bloggers a little love?

Seek out other blogs to read. Promote other bloggers on social media. Leave comments on posts that really speak to you.

These new blogs don’t have to be in your same area of expertise. They can be totally unrelated.

Personally, I get energized by pinning a lot of coffee and DIY related stuff when I need a blogging break.

It gives you a break from your blog and it also helps you build relationships with other bloggers – a win/win.

3. Give yourself a mantra.

A mantra is a short phrase that will help you put your head in the right place.

Mine is, Celebrate the small wins. (More on that in a minute.)

Here are some others that you can grab if you want:

1 2 3 4 5 6

I suggest making a graphic from your mantra (I made these with Canva) and keeping it in an accessible place for whenever the suckiness starts to creep in.

Your thoughts do shape your reality, so force yourself to think better ones.

4. Celebrate the small wins.

A couple of small wins:

1. Choosing your blog URL.

2. Setting up your blog theme.

3. Writing your first blog post.

4. Writing your second blog post.

5. Writing any blog post.

6. Getting a comment on a blog post.

7. Someone tweeting about your blog.

8. Someone liking a blog post on Facebook. (Even if it’s your mom, celebrate that you have a supportive mom!)

9. Getting your first email subscriber.

10. Getting an email from a blog reader.

It’s so easy to keep striving for more. More page-views. More email subscribers. More social shares.

But striving really leads itself to feeling like crap. Soon you’re checking your WordPress stats every 10 minutes (which I’ve never done….cough). And then you wonder why you have no motivation to write a blog post.

Celebrating the small wins really means acknowledging that you are building something, and that building takes time, and that you rock for just getting out there and doing it in the first place.

It means patting yourself on the back and giving yourself some love with each little success you have. Because it’s always a good time to give yourself a little love.

5. Do one thing to move forward.

Sometimes blogging starts to feel like this HUGE thing.

I have to write a post, and then promote it on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook. And oh, by the way, I have to write a really catchy Twitter profile and figure out how to get more followers. Plus I have to create an opt-in to build my email list. And then I have to figure out how the heck MailChimp works. Shit, I forgot to set up my Facebook page.

And on and on.

It gets super overwhelming. And feeling overwhelmed REALLY sucks.

So…

Just forget about all of that. The mental to-do list. The dozens of things you need to get to eventually.

And pick one thing, just one thing, to do right now.

Like tweeting about a blog post. Or writing a headline. Or responding to a comment on your blog.

I find that when I just do one thing, it breaks the ice, and I am able to keep doing more afterward (and actually enjoy it).

But even if you just do that one little thing, you’re a tiny bit further on your blogging journey. And that’s something to celebrate. (See above.)

6. Vent.

When you feel like your blog has morphed from an exciting new fling to a needy boyfriend, you are not alone.

Reach out to other bloggers (or even just a close friend). Tell them how frustrated you feel.

Giving voice to the suckiness makes it feel a little less sucky. And when people commiserate with you, it will make you feel way better. (Haven’t you seen Sex and the City?)

The other great thing about venting is that vulnerability is the perfect breeding ground for connection. In sharing your blogging struggles, you will give others the space to share theirs. And you might just make a friend in the process.

No one ever said blogging was easy. (Or if they did, they were lying.)

(It’s about as easy as coming up with a BIG IDEA that you will never tire of writing about, and then writing posts about it week after week, while building relationships with other bloggers through comments and social media, and oh, did I mention learning how to write well? And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.)

So, when it starts to suck, embrace it. Because that means that you’ve gotten through the honeymoon period (or multiple honeymoon periods…).

And then get away from your blog, fall in love with other blogs, get a mantra, celebrate the small wins, do one small step, and vent.

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  • Nidhi

    Thank you for this! It felt like every single word was meant for me, and I’m only a few months old to blogging.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks so much, Nidhi! I hope it helped you stoke your creative fires!

  • Sam Wu

    These are some great tips! I’ve run up against this multiple times and I just try to push through it. Now, I’m going to try stepping a way for a while instead. I think this will help me to let go of any negative feelings and frustrations. The blog won’t be looming over me if I just walk away for a while. Also, thanks for reminding me that this isn’t supposed to be easy!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Sam! It definitely helps to get some space. It’s also good to remember that blogging is hard – that way, you won’t be too hard on yourself!

  • This is great advice. I like the reminder to step away from the blog. I used to stay off from being online at least until 5pm on Sundays to give me an opportunity to recharge and refuel as well as work on projects around the house. I’ve noticed that when I forgo that beautiful quietude and delve into noise, I’m not as prepared to face the week bright-eyed and bushy tailed haha….Anyways, great post! 🙂

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Kim! It sounds like you already have a strategy for getting the break you need…it’s just about following your own wisdom!

  • Marlene Chiasson

    Great advice Daniela! I go through phases, but when I write, I really try to be in the zone. I really feel like my last blog post was a small victory and that I managed to apply what I’ve learned in your group. I want to keep it up.

  • Your blog was among the other blogs I returned to repeatedly during my month-long blogging break. I like how you write openly about your insecurities, and your sharing them was encouraging at a discouraging time for me. Although my excitement for blogging about my topic has waned, I’m looking at it as a sign that I need to shift the focus of my blog rather than just quit entirely. Not quitting is a small win, right? If anything, blogging is teaching me about persistence.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Grace! I totally agree that blogging can be a great teacher of persistence. It is a huge win that you didn’t quit! Because so many bloggers do. Just keep going!

  • Jonelle

    Daniela, I really enjoyed this post! I think sometimes we get so sucked into the admin side of blogging that it’s easy to forget why we do this in the first place. I love the idea of stepping away from it for a minute to get some perspective on it. When I go out for dinner I make a point of leaving my phone at home because otherwise I can’t help myself checking stats in between courses. It’s important to have a work/life balance and the same applies to blogging!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, for the comment Jonelle! I am impressed that you leave your phone at home when you go out to dinner. I am always happier when I do that, though I’m not always brave/smart enough!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Jonelle, thanks for sharing about checking your stats. I am glad I’m not the only one! I am glad this post resonated with you!

  • What amazing advice + just what I needed to hear! I’ve been feeling uninspired or not drawn to blogging lately – or at least not chomping at the bit to sit down and type. I thought this was so strange because I’ve been going strong for over a month of my new 3x a week schedule and thought I’d already pushed through my slump.
    But maybe I just need to step away. Which ironically is what I’ve been doing tonight! Reading all the other #daringcreative blogs 🙂

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Annie! Sometimes reading other blogs can give you just the energy you need to keep going. Thanks for stopping by from #daringcreative!

  • Thank you for these great tips! Some days I feel like such a failure as a blogger, yet I love it and can’t bring myself to quit!

    • Daniela Uslan

      I am glad you enjoyed them! It is so easy to feel like a failure on this long, long journey, but if you are still blogging you are most DEFINITELY not a failure!

  • Mrs.AOK

    Thank you! I needed to read this today. I need to remember to start celebrating the little things, they add up, and that’s big 🙂
    XOXO

  • Katharine

    This is so unexpected, to find myself reading here, needing to read here. I began in ’09. Never ran out of juice
    Until now.
    Fought lack of connectivity. Fought for a table at McDonald’s. Fought Verizon. Never. Gave. Up.
    Until now.
    Thanks for “Celebrate the small wins.” I am building something, here. I am building something here. One. Brick. Hand me a brick, please. One more brick. Yep. Can do this.