Monday, July 28, 2008

Life Blockage


Has this ever happened to you? One day, you’re doing your thing—whatever that thing may be—you know, taking care of business, tending to the daily details of your so-called life. It’s a breeze, a walk in the park, a nice, comfortable routine that you enjoy. Sure, it can be mundane, at times, a bit of the same old/same old, but it’s a smooth, effortless ride. You’re getting stuff done. You’re productive. Happy. Living la dolce vida (and maybe even la vida loca, for you Ricky Martin fans out there). And then, out of nowhere, out of the blue, it all ends. Stops. Ceases to not only be fun, but to be at all. You are suddenly stuck. In a rut.

BLOCKED!

This sensation can apply to just about any situation in anyone’s life. As a writer, the first thing that comes to mind is: Writer’s Block. I can hear the moans and screams from my fellow writer’s out there—no, no, not that! Not writer’s block! Do not go there!

Okay, I won’t, not just yet. Instead, how about I go here: constipation.

Now we’re talking about some serious blockage.

Isn’t that a bit of a stretch, Mike? From writer’s block to constipation?

Not really. Here’s why: to avoid any kid of blockage in your life (let’s call this Life Blockage), you need to follow a few simple tips—plan ahead, practice good, healthy routines, balance your triad—mind, body, and spirit, and work hard at it. Every day.

Life blockage isn’t limited to writer’s block or your ability or inability to regulate your bowels. It can challenge your relationships or careers, appear as a mid-life crisis, and mess with your diet and health; just about anything in your life. The good news: working on these tips can help you manage most of what life, and life blockage, sends your way.

DO IT EVERY DAY

It is said that practice makes perfect. While seeking perfection can be a practice in futility, practicing is a good thing. To get better at anything, you need to work at it. Repetition is an important key on the road to improvement, but mistakes are bound to happen—another good thing. Making mistakes is encouraged, as long as you learn from them.

Let’s go back and take a look at writing again. I strongly suggest you write every day. Easy, right, you’re a writer. But it is easier said than done—at least for me it is. I mean, who has anything relevant to say every day? Not a lot of people. But you still need to write, all the time, if your desire is to become a good writer, and to improve your writing skills. So write. Every day. At times (lots of times) you will write bad prose and you will discard most of what you have toiled hours to create. If you want to write (and those who really want to write, will write—it’s almost an unstoppable compulsion) you will, and, if I may be so bold, you will enjoy the process.

Writing every day will keep the writer’s block away!

Using these methods will help you with most any challenges life tosses your way.

• Work at (_______) every day
• Understand that it is okay, encouraged even, to make mistakes
• Learn from those mistakes
• Work smart

Working smart is managing your time, balancing your tasks, and doing the little things that you learn and pick up along the way. One of the tips I picked up to help me combat the evils of writer’s block was writing every day. And on those days when your creative muse is your best friend, take a moment to jot down all those amazing ideas that seem to be overflowing from your brain. You will be grateful for them a few weeks later when your brain bogs down and is as productive as a wedge of Swiss cheese.

Another tip that is great for writers and writer’s block is to read, all the time, everything you can get your hands on. Diverse data, fiction and non-fiction, books and magazines, every day. READ.

The more you know, the more you can write.

So, what does any of this have to do with, you know, ahh, that other backed up situation you mentioned earlier?

Constipation?

Yup, that’s the one.

Apply the same tips.

• Work at it every day. This means eating the right foods and the right amounts, along with an exercise program
• Make mistakes and learn from them. Discover which foods make your plumbing happy and which ones do not. I can give you a one-word hint—FIBER! Lots of fruits and veggies. And stay away from cheese and processed foods.
• Work smart—see above





When I sat down to write this, I was blocked—just my mind, not anywhere else (if you are, this video will help). My life these days has been filled with more than my share of outside distractions and challenges that have upset my routines and balance, creating a blockage. A life blockage.

Whenever I am faced with these challenges, these life blockages, I always fall back on the common sense methods that have helped me overcome myriad difficulties in the past. Writing down a few of them in this post reminded, and reassured, me that they still are effective. Still work for me.

I hope they work for you too.

Until next time…

peace,

Mike

28 comments:

Low Carb Adrenaline Junkie said...

I'm with you every step of the way. I've even chewed trough a few pencils. Great post....

Eric S. said...

Now there's some practical down to earth tips. Now if I can just apply them as needed? Writers block is just about as bad as the other blockage. I hate when I sit down and all I can produce is a big pile of ______. Ah but that's what you want from the other blockage you mentioned, LOL.

Elio Galluzzi said...

A very nice post! I put myself in your shoes all the time:)

pamela said...

I needed this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Skip Kanester said...

Great post Mike!
It's a simple, but not always easy formula. Be persistent, toss in a healthy dose of patience and learn the lessons from your mistakes: stop doing what doesn't work and do more of what does.

Thanks for reminding me to go get a big shot of brain fiber.....

Teasa's Tips said...

Thank you this is very necessary today. I like it so much I am submitting it to Entreview.

Ridiculous Shopper said...

Very nice comment indeed. Keep up the good writing yourself!

Doug Kueffler said...

Great title for your article, Mike. Brought me right in, so "blocked" must have struck a chord with me at some "level." Ha ha. Good article.

divamentors said...

Hi Mike Thanks for the great post. Perseverance is a common theme in the blogosphere tonight.

You have a lot of really inspirational info on your blog.

I would love it if you would share your blog with my readers. They deserve your fresh perspective. Would you consider adding your link to our community so people can find you more easily? Here's the link

http://www.benaturallywell.com/blog/add-your-blog/

Many Blessings,
Shelley

Urban Panther said...

Since I post every day, I write every day. And you are right, repetition makes it come naturally. Like learning to play an instrument or a sport. You muscles 'remember' how to do it. In this case, the muscle is the brain. However, I rarely get writer's block anyway, because the Urbane Lion and I write duelling blogs. This means we are always brainstorming ideas. It definitely helps to have a creative partner!

As for the other, um, blockage. Pretty good in that department too. Except when I travel. Nope, never seems to work so well then. Aren't you glad I shared that? *grin*

Anonymous said...

Great Post!!!

Vince
Try Change

wamylove said...

Good points, except I love cheese, and too much fruit gives me, well you know....

Jackie said...

I am struggling with writers block at the moment, such a pain, but I am lucky though as that is the only type I suffer from as my Vegan style eating has always prevented that.

Michael Wong 38 said...

Hi, was wondering if you'd like to exchange links with me?
If yes, please leave your blog url as a comment at:
http://bigmoneylist.blogspot.com/
I'll link to you first, then when you have time link back k?
Thanks, Michael
BTW--I'm michaelwong38 on digg. If ever you want something dugg, just send me a shout anytime.

jackst said...

I guess almost any writers experience writers block. You have a great post today, and I find it useful to readers especially writers out there. Thanks and God bless!

MizFit said...

it is as simple as that for *me* and my writing.

every single day.

Miz.

rebecca said...

Try meditation! Whenever I can't figure something out, or don't know what to write, or need an answer, I meditate. The answer always comes, in some form or another.
As far as the other "blockage" goes I had a strangulated hernia years ago...big time blockage...hours away from dieing...it's the epitome of blockage! Lost half my small intestine because of it. That's something to pay attention to if you have constipation accompanied by pain, nausea and a "bubbly" lump in the abdominal area.

Brenda said...

I think you're right on ...although I admit I have problems sticking to routines. And, if I might add one to your list (especially for writers), drink green tea. Better yet, take a green tea supplement. It's been clinically proven to improve concentration!

isabella mori said...

totally with you re the constipation being a good metaphor for writers block. (for other things, too - i'd include certain experiences of depression, too)

interestingly enough, i just finished the blogathon - 24 hours of blogging, 49 posts. eating well, including tons of fruit, was one of the reasons it all went very well, despite the fact that i'm not a spring chicken anymore

John Sullivan said...

Why this post doesn't get sold to a National magazine I don't know.
Mike I so needed to read that.I had a wide range of emotion as I read it and felt like it was custom made.Then I saw the 19 comments:)
That was excellent,really Thanks
submitted to searchles.com
mixx.com,stumble,digg,Mr Wong,with a backflip thrown in.

Pattie said...

Hi Mike -

I just found your blog and really enjoyed your post about blockages - of ALL kinds! I'm working hard to keep balance in my life, and your words offered some good suggestions. Thanks!

Nice to meet you. :-)

rebecca said...

Hi there mike, I sent you the Brillante Weblog Award! Well, 'cause you are brillante!!
Go to my blog to retrieve it!

Nick Grimshawe said...

Life Blockage is an excellent article and I agree with your suggestions. As a writer, I do write everyday. I've made it so I have to. I publish a newsletter that goes out to my readers every weekday, and on weekends I have two very important post to my blog. I just don't have time to get blocked. But I can get stale, and that is when I have to really push through to the other side. I go off looking for the different, the new, try a new template, all that sort of stuff until I feel I'm through and fresh again.

Thanks for your wonderful blog.

Nick

boneygirl said...

I suppose I suffer from writer's block often, as I'm a new blogger and have a lot of distractions (my negative term for other responsibilities)that keep me hindered. Thanks for the advice!

Faisal Admar said...

What a great post Mike. To write everyday is something we must do to improve our writing. I couldn’t agree more about that especially me who struggling with my English as it’s not my mother’s tongue. By writing everyday it can improve my vocabulary instead of correct grammar.

Have a nice day Mike.

Steve v4.7 said...

Great post. Throw in some "risk" and the recipe becomes a little spicier.

4udiary said...

Great post...:)

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