Maybe you have thought about being a content writer and are worried about the stress. Perhaps you’re not sure it can pay well or even if you would be good at it. The good news is there are strategies to be more productive, have fun, and get paid for being a content writer.
Content Writing can be a stressful job because it’s creative. There are ideas to reduce your stress and have more fun writing.
Please keep reading and I’ll my top 9 ways that writing can be stressful and 9 ways to overcome these challenges as well as become more productive. Plus, I’ll share 2 ways you can earn “really” good income being a content writer right now.
1 – Write Content that You Want to Learn More About
Arguably the biggest area of stress with writing or any type of creative work is known as “writer’s block” and this is when you don’t know what to write about.
I’m going to tackle this issue as a blogger and Youtuber even though there are many different types of writing professionals.
As a blogger, the single MOST important thing is to pick a niche that isn’t too narrow and that you’re interested in. For example, a VERY successful blogger named Jim picked a niche in soundproofing a room. As you can guess after 10-20 posts he ran out of stuff to talk about.
Yep, no more growth for that website.
Your interests are going to change, this is why going WAY too narrow is a bad move. Some people feel that going too broad is bad, but it’s probably better to go too broad than too narrow.
By picking a niche that is broad you give yourself a lot more freedom and breathing room.
You might be wondering what happens if you don’t have any interests or you’re not sure what your interests are.
Well, what do you want to learn more about? What are you curious about? If you all the money in the world what would you be doing?
Maybe it’s learning how to be a better writer. Guess what you can actually create content around this.
You could even pick topics that you don’t know a lot about then as you learn you’re just documenting your journey.
This way no matter what you WILL win. Of course, if you know “a lot” about your niche then you’re going to write more quickly.
2 – Don’t Judge Others and You Will Not Judge Yourself
If you enjoy what you do you’re more likely to stick with it rather than ONLY looking forward to a paycheck.
Don’t get me wrong a nice paycheck is great, but if you love what you do and you get paid then you’ve WON!
The biggest tip to having fun with creative work such as writing or creating videos is…
By NOT judging other people you are not going to judge yourself and will be happier. Give yourself permission to make mistakes, and do things differently.
Another way to NOT judge yourself is to write a rough draft as quickly as you can. Whatever comes to your mind just put it down.
You can always edit and create the diamond out of rough later. The real writing is the editing portion, but by putting “something” down it creates momentum and that is everything.
Most importantly, having a rough draft is going to make you feel good because you accomplished something.
You could EVEN post your worst content to start with. You might have just overcome your fear and the world didn’t end.
Now, just keep improving on it and keep writing! You will only get better with time.
3 – Only Focus on What You Can Control
The MOST difficult part of doing creative work such as writing is dealing with rejection. I know what you’re thinking, but nobody rejects you.
Well, if you write an article and nobody sees it then Google rejected you.
The biggest mindset shift that helps me with writing or ANY sales job is to ONLY focus on what I can control.
A great way to be happier is NOT being attached to an outcome. You could say that by having VERY low expectations or NO expectations you’re guaranteed to win.
Of course, writing and a marketing job is a numbers game. The more content you write the more money you will earn.
It’s like instead of focusing on walking 1 mile, focus on just taking 1 step at a time, and before you know it you will have walked 1 mile.
Funny, enough this is how I thought when I walked the PCT trail, but I only walked across the state of Oregon and not the full trail.
4 – Create Realistic Deadlines
Are you the type of person who ONLY did homework right before it was due? If so, you know deadlines can force you to stop overthinking and get the stuff done.
The BEST deadlines to have are the ones that you have 100% control on.
What is the one area you can control when it comes to writing? You can control how many hours you are sitting down to write every day.
By having a conversation with yourself about how many hours you’re willing to work writing and when you will get off work you are setting a deadline.
You really should put on 1 hat as the business owner and come up with a work schedule. Then put on another hat as the “employee” and come up with a work schedule. Now, meet somewhere in the middle.
That is a firm deadline on something you can control and by focusing on that part everything else will take care of itself.
Instead of some crazy unrealistic deadline involving things you can’t control (which creates stress) you’re setting the deadline on the ONE thing you can control and that is when you are showing up to work.
An example of a deadline you can’t control would be becoming a millionaire in 1 year. There are so many variables to it that it’s going to create unhappiness, disappointment, and stress.
5 – Don’t Focus on Perfection but Good Enough
One of the words that I dislike the most is “perfect.” If you wait for something to be perfect before you publish it then it’s NEVER going to get done.
I like publishing something when it’s “good enough.” Sure, you want to proofread your content a few times, install a free version of Grammarly and use it, but after it looks “good enough” then just publish it.
Quality Vs. Quantity is a debate and I would argue that speed and quantity are superior to quality. The quality of content and creative work is subjective (up for interpretation), while quantity is NOT debatable and it’s something you can control.
Plus, I really feel quality is MORE attached to someone’s ego.
I’ve gotten TONS of views on Youtube videos without even a custom thumbnail and no edits. It’s the same with written content, where it’s never going to be 100% perfect. Striving for 100% perfection just leads to undue stress.
The worst thing is deleting your work and starting over (I’ve been there). Perfection is tied to insecurity! Being ok with getting laughed at, rejected, mean comments, and looking stupid is MOST of the battle when it comes to creating content.
6 – Take Many Breaks to Stay Focused
It’s true that the human brain can ONLY focus on something for so long. When I think about writing or content creation I think of the saying.
When it comes to staying focused I FORCE myself to take breaks. Get up and walk around, stretch your eyes and look at something in the distance. I do this “at least” one time in an hour sometimes more.
The human body can only sit down for so long.
The author Ernest Hemingway had a tip to stop writing when it’s going good and when you will know what will happen next. If you do this every day you will never stuck.
This is another way to say “force yourself to take a break.”
Another great idea is to give yourself “little rewards.” I like to break up my writing by watching 1-2 minutes of a TV series.
By forcing yourself to take breaks you are more likely to NOT get burned out and write for much longer periods of time.
You could also look at it like instead of writing 1 LARGE post of 2,000 words. This post is just 10 posts with 200 words each. If you break things down, it becomes less intimidating.
7 – Always be Sharpening the Axe
The saying to always be sharpening the axe means to always be learning from people better than you. Being humble and open-minded to learn from other people NOT only can shorten the learning time by getting better but can give you inspiration.
Also by finding a mentor it can help you gain confidence because it will reduce the stress of wondering if you’re doing the right thing.
The reality is there are easier ways to do things. Learning from other people’s mistakes can only help you as long as you use what you learned.
8 – Always Have Inspiration Around You
The journey of a thousand miles always starts with a single step and that first step is usually the hardest. Whatever you do to make that first step as easy as possible is ONLY going to help.
Maybe coming up with stuff to write about is challenging, so having a hit list of MANY articles with their titles already ready can help give you that first step.
Have you ever looked at a blank sheet of paper and wondered what the heck you should write? You could have a default template to work off.
Maybe the first few sentences that you write are almost always the same as you’re other writing and that makes it easier to continue.
Even songs (which are very creative) there is somewhat of a template to work off. Many songs have a few verses, then there is the chorus (big sing-along) then sometimes a bridge, and back into the chorus (sing-along catchy tune).
Another idea that I love to do is to have good background music on. Right now, I love listening to video game background music and writing is almost like a video game, but I can get paid for it.
Also, write when you’re at your peak time for inspiration. I really LOVE waking up insanely early and writing when the world is asleep.
Maybe you prefer writing late at night, but work with what feels good.
Another way to have inspiration around you is by NOT reinventing the wheel. Being creative doesn’t mean you have to come up with something brand-new.
I love this saying because it takes ALL the pressure off. Nothing is 100% original. Everything new just got that way by combining different things that were already there.
To be creative all you have to do is combine things. Easy right?
9 – Make Writing a Win-Win Situation
Writing and learning can be very fun activities, but getting paid for your time is also rewarding. The truth is you can have your cake and eat it too.
There is a way to earn money from your writing and the best place to start might just be this place HERE. This is a network that can connect you to VERY good writing jobs. This could be a great way to get your foot in the door, gain experience and earn good money “right now.”
If you want to earn MORE money from writing it helps to think long-term. Jeff Bezos the creator of Amazon.com has a 10,000-year clock inside a mountain. This clock is there to remind him to think long-term.
Instead of writing for someone else you could build a website. This website then will be an asset that can pay you into the future EVEN when you’re not working.
I’ve been building websites and earning money with affiliate marketing for over 10 years. I also created a free eBook that I feel can be very helpful.
I’m giving this eBook away for free at this place HERE.
Writing is a fun activity that you can do anywhere and anytime. The best part about it is that it can be a jumping-off platform for many other creative work.
For example, you can use the content you create with writing to create videos, podcasts, eBooks, and more.
I hope this blog post on how to make writing less stressful was helpful and at least gave you some inspiration. Bye for now.