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When You Can’t Write

A frustrated mind dump in the midst of a creative block.

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

It’s been a bit since I last wrote a blog or recorded a personal podcast. This week, I shared with some friends how I’m feeling a bit blocked for some reason. I asked them to pray.

As I sit here today, the block remains.

One of my friends asked me if I need to sit with the block. He suggested that I may need to enter into it and experience it, to be aware of it, to be mindful of it.

“Perhaps God is asking you to be patient.”

For the last 48 hours or so, I have been. I am trying to allow myself to see the block, so to speak. During this time, I have found quiet moments to let my mind prayerfully enter in and try to embrace it fully.

What am I finding? Frustration.

That is an emotion that, for me, is negative. I don’t like feeling frustrated. Feelings of frustration are ones that I try to avoid at all costs.

One of the things that I’m learning about myself is that I try to avoid pain. As a result, I self-medicate with food and entertainment. This frustration that I’m experiencing because of a perceived loss of creativity is driving me to entertainment. I am working hard and have some accountability with food, but the entertainment piece is difficult to stop.

Also, because I avoid pain, I don’t very often “sit” in these moments of pain. I tend to move past them and away from them as quickly as possible.

I am not going to do that this time. I am going to enter in and experience the frustration. As I am being prayerfully mindful of the frustration, I am seeing some things about myself that I needed to see.

For instance, I am learning that I need a great deal of input and mental stimulation through reading and conversations. I also need to be very diligent in capturing ideas when they strike me. I can’t hope to hang on to them and hold them in my mind.

So, here’s what I’m beginning to do. I am starting to carry a small notebook in my pocket. Hopefully, I will remember to jot ideas down when they hit me. Also, I am forcing myself to read first thing in the day. Finally, I am making myself write, something, anything every day. I have found a nice little private blogging space. Maybe someday they will become public, maybe not. But it’s there and it’s for me.

What do you do when you’re feeling creatively or mentally blocked? I’d love to hear in the comments!

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