We’re all familiar with writer’s block, which is “the condition of being unable to create a piece of written work because something in your mind prevents you from doing it.” Legal blogger’s block involves the same concept, only it specifically applies to the difficulty that can come along with legal blogging. Sometimes the words just don’t come.
It can be frustrating and paralyzing, like you’re stuck in a fog unable to make progress. So the next time you find yourself suffering from legal blogger’s block, try this technique to overcome it.
Temporarily Lower Your Expectations
There’s a part in Tim Ferriss’ book Tools of Titans that directly addresses writer’s block. Here’s a brief synopsis of that section in my own words.
Part of the psychology behind this phenomenon is that we have overly high expectations of ourselves. After all, a blank page or screen is completely error free. It’s only after you start typing that you inevitably make mistakes. Sometimes legal bloggers sabotage themselves by having incredibly lofty expectations to the point that it’s crippling and they don’t write anything out of fear of imperfection.
But this is obviously detrimental. One way to get past legal blogger’s block is to temporarily lower your expectations. The logic here is that by getting something out — anything out, it will provide you with the initial wave of momentum needed. In turn, this will make it easier to keep going and ultimately finish your article.
I personally find that often the most difficult part of the process is getting out the first few sentences. Once you’ve got that done, you simply keep adding to it. Before you know it, you’ve got an entire article written. By lowering your expectations for just a while, this should propel you beyond the limitations that come along with a perfectionistic mindset.
Remember the First Draft is Only a Rough Draft
Even the greatest writers and bloggers go through rough drafts (sometimes several of them) before anything is ever actually published. Seldom are brilliant works and amazing manifestos written in one round with zero editing. It’s just not realistic.
This is why you shouldn’t be overly concerned with getting it “just right” the first go-round. Having this type of mindset is going to put unnecessary pressure on you that is likely to hinder your progress. Rather than trying to create an error-free blog post in one sitting, just focus on producing a rough draft that you’ll go back and edit later on. This should reduce your pressure significantly and get you out of the “mental fog” that often occurs with legal blogger’s block.
Don’t take it personally when you inevitably get stuck on a blog post. It happens to everyone at some point. By using this technique, you should be able to get yourself in a better mental state — one that gets you out of paralysis and motivates you to keep writing. That way you can blog with greater efficiency and prevent yourself from getting stuck in a rut.
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