Finding writing ideas doesn’t have to be the gargantuan, impossible task that we make it out to be.
Sometimes in a fit of overworked fatigue, this can feel like an impossible task. Ideas can often feel stale, or even non-existent. Sometimes it feels like you know you’re producing something that’s been done before just to say that you did it, too.
Inevitably, these are the projects that fall flat, and we are the least proud of them. We don’t need to do the things that everyone else does, simply because everyone else does them.
The Blogging and Content Marketing that Every Business Should Be Doing
None of this is to say, however, that you shouldn’t be producing content. In fact, the opposite is true. Blogs, articles, sales letters, landing pages, and videos are the vehicles by which your ideas – and by extension your business – come to life.
Finding Writing Ideas that Grow Your Business
Your ideas dictate the quality of your business. They also dictate the quality of your relationships and even the quality of your life. Ideas open the gates to thinking bigger and achieving more. They can be stubborn and difficult to find when you’re burned out.
So, it’s a matter of practice. Here’s how to start.
Make a Practice of Writing Down Your Ideas
There’s a business blogger and podcaster by the name of James Altucher who preaches about writing down 10 ideas every day. They don’t have to be earth-shattering. They don’t have to be business-related. But the act of simply brainstorming 10 ideas a day will build your ability to come up with the caliber of idea that will change your business and change your life.
Don’t hold onto these ideas too tightly, either. We live in a world that’s about to become more automated than ever before. Ideas make people want to work with you even more. If you’re the type of person who can share some of those ideas with friends, colleagues, clients, and customers, you become the type of person that people want to work with.
Training your brain to just generate these ideas is a start. But there’s more you can do to create habits that lend themselves to finding writing ideas.
Step Away from The Computer
Perseverance can be an admirable trait. It can be the difference between success in business, and another failed attempt. But…
And this is a big but. Sometimes you need to know when to walk away. Solving the next problem can be difficult to do when your brain is steeped in overdrive. If you’re wired to always be working on the next problem, it’s difficult to see the solution.
Taking a short break can help. There’s a reason for the cliché about the best ideas coming in the shower. Your brain isn’t hyper-focused on problem-solving. Taking a walk, taking out the garbage, unloading the dishwasher, or simply eating lunch may all lead to the breakthrough you were looking for.
Read as Much as You Can
Read all the quality materials that you can get your hands on. I’m not talking about mindlessly scrolling through your social media feeds, though. That’s the kind of action that leads to an absolute standstill. I’m talking about long-form, quality materials.
Read books and articles about your industry. Read books and articles about your passions and hobbies. Read the back of cereal boxes – whatever it takes, just keep reading. You’ll expose yourself to more quality writing, and therefore the quality of your writing will also improve.
All of this will enrich you. It will allow you to become the person who can draw connections between your hobbies and your industry. You can improve your life and differentiate your business with the kind of writing ideas you’ll find by exposing yourself to more books and articles.
Talk with a Wider Range of People
Again, social media doesn’t necessarily do us any favors here. Find people who know about the subjects that interest you and have a face-to-face conversation with them. Brian Grazer has a profound book on this subject, called A Curious Mind.
If you’re self-employed and work on your own, this can require a deliberate effort on your part – but it’s highly worth it. The more people you talk to, about a broader range of subjects, the more profound your life can become.
I heard a guest on the Tim Ferriss podcast mention the idea of creating your own personal board of directors. I wish I remember who said it, but I absolutely love this. You can informally or formally talk with these people once every few months about the direction of your business, or whatever purpose you may need to talk with them.
With the right people, you can find invaluable direction – and high caliber ideas. The one thing I would say, is you need to be tactful in your approach. “Hi, my name is XXXXXX, and I have a vacancy on my personal board of directors,” isn’t necessarily going to work. If you decide to propose regular meetings, offer something in return, like helping them with business-related questions, etc.
This can also mean regular conversations with friends, colleagues, and other professionals. When you can bounce ideas off each other, it’s easier to decipher the winning ones.
Learn How to Put Your Ideas into Practice
Finding writing ideas becomes easier over time. So does determining which of these ideas is worth acting on, and which you can cast aside. You don’t have to keep publishing the kinds of marketing pieces that everyone else is, simply because everyone else is doing them. You don’t have to stay seated through hours of frustration at the computer simply to solve this problem, either.
When you can incorporate some of these strategies into your routine, you can learn how to develop the types of ideas that will truly improve the quality of your business and your life.