The 2014 Syracuse Blogging Conference aims to redefine blogging. We think that it is just a way to express one’s thoughts – a sideline. It is because some bloggers have a “real job” aside from blogging, and it is merely a way for them to pour something into our cups from their pot. However, blogging is more than just “it.” It is a way of life that some people already made a fortune and some people made a life out of it already. Continue reading 2014 Syracuse Blogging Conference: It Is More Than Just A Hobby
Would you believe that even great writers experience mental blocks? Yes, they do. The truth is, there are times that these writers find themselves in a pressured situation of creating something with their unstable mental and emotional condition. With all the stress and anxiety that come with the whole unfortunate scenario, most of them end up into writing nothing.
“Some of the clients I see come to me because of problems related to the creative process. Sometimes they call it writer’s block. Sometimes they say, “I have the idea but it won’t come out onto the canvas.” We work together to determine the underlying causes of distress, often by setting aside the identified problems themselves and looking at their underpinnings.” – Sarah Swenson, LMHC.
So if you are also having the same problem, do not fret because you are not alone. Below are the everyday situations that perhaps stop you from moving forward in writing and the things you can do to address it.
Mental Block (Lack Of Enthusiasm)
Having a mental block is common for writers. Honestly, it is not something that they should worry severely. However, there is a type of mental block that seems to be dangerous for some. It is a little different from what most writers experience because it tends to fizzle out ideas. The truth is, writers are not mentally blocked because they can still think about what they want to write. The problem here is a lack of enthusiasm. The particular attitude caters to writers’ motivation and will to create.
There are two things that writers can do to address the situation. First, they have to listen to their critical voice. If they feel like their writings will never be good enough, they must recognize why they started working on it in the first place. Honestly, it is as simple as providing one’s self reasons as to why they do the things they do. Another one is writing anything. It does not have to be specific or detailed. As long it potentially creates a relation to what is currently hanging at the moment, it will be fine. You see, writing does not intentionally follow a path. But not unless the writers want it to be unique and engaging, then it is another side of the picture.
Exhaustion (Working Without Resting)
Another thing that keeps writers away from writing is rest. Yes, that is correct. When these individuals feel motivated into finishing their art, most of them forget the value of rest. They don’t sleep and sometimes do not take a break. The problem with this habit is different, though. That is because not only it affects the mental function of writers, it also damages the physical state as well.
“You probably don’t have any trouble recognizing when you’re physically exhausted. Your limbs might feel heavy, your eyes droopy, your energy zapped. But knowing when you’re mentally exhausted can be trickier,” says Megan MacCutcheon, LPC. “It’s easy to get so busy juggling everything you have on your plates that you fail to recognize when you’re headed toward mental exhaustion or burnout.”
The way to eliminate the problem here is for writers to find the moment to take some rest. Those jobs won’t go anywhere, and it will entirely stay the same tomorrow. Therefore, pausing from stressful writing gives you time to regenerate. It allows both the mind and body to gather all the necessary strength that will be useful in dealing with the situation right after a significant interval.
According to Julia Hogan, LCPC, “The perfect sleeper avoids screen time before bed; journals and decompresses before crawling under crisp, clean sheets; and falls asleep in about seven minutes for a good seven to nine hours each night. In reality, most of us don’t check all those boxes before bed. Life has a sneaky way of making it difficult to consistently get quality sleep each night.”
Controlling a mental blockage is impossible. However, managing it is comfortable with these helpful ideas. Most writers used it over and over because it promises to build a better writing experience. Try doing it now and see the results.
Not all people like to write. Some think that it is a habit that takes all the time and energy. It does not necessarily create a difference in one attempt too. In some cases, writing something can be tedious and a little frustrating to do. Sometimes, it is so demanding that it feels like eating up all the mental strength that people have. It is not ideal for those people with disabilities as well. And even if a lot of health experts attest to its benefits in the emotional and mental aspects, not everyone has something to write in a piece of paper. Although everyone has a story to tell, not all of them are open about it, even to themselves.
However, those are the thoughts of people who cannot find good things about writing. Because for some people, writing is extraordinary. It takes away all the worries and anxiety that individuals experience in their lives. It becomes the reviewer that merely tells them everything about life. That includes the stress they get from family issues, peer pressure, relationship struggle, and self-awareness. Writing can significantly introduce resolution due to problem recognition too. It can show people the things they should be thankful for living as well.
“There’s a lot of science grounding expressive language writing and journaling as being an extremely helpful piece for maintaining mental wellness,” says Deborah Serani, PsyD, a New York-based psychotherapist. “You don’t want patients just to use their 50-minute session to process what’s going on in their lives. Instead, we should be helping them create a toolbox of ways to express themselves that they can use not only outside of therapy but in place of therapy at some point.”
How It’s Done
With all the technological advancements in the world, people are not anymore into writing stuff. Most of them run their errands on their smartphones. All are focused on gizmos and everything. But what these individuals do not know that the benefits of writing are endless. It is as if like entering new worlds. There is recognition over the past experiences where it allows internalization as to why things happen before. With that, there comes a change. Writing can also support future situations. It can aid in listing short-term and long-term goals, as well as daily duties. It allows individuals to become prepared. It creates a sense of focus. Writing creates magic in people’s lives. Because not only it does support creation, it also allows life teaching.
Writing can change people’s lives because of their potential to subject into a story. It can connect to people’s reality. It contains narratives that show how life can become so captivating, though it is often tough. In writing, emotional and mental state is so essential. It is its foundation. And when it becomes a passion, it brings forward the truth of the unnoticed things that people can no longer understand. It is something that not only teens and adults can take advantage of. Writing is for everyone. Even kids can understand the value of creating something out of their imagination.
John Grohol, PsyD, writes, “I’ve seen this time and time again with some of my friends’ blogs — they share feelings and thoughts that I’d have a hard time getting from them in-person. Especially since many times people blog as they’re going through an emotional or difficult situation in their lives. It’s so much easier to blog about it as it’s happening than to try and call and talk to a half dozen close people by phone, repeating the same information and feelings time and time again (which can result in an emotional drain).”
For Susan Borkin, psychotherapist, “Journaling offers many benefits, Journal writing serves as a tool to help bring a new perspective to these memories by allowing the individual to process them in an organized way as opposed to just replaying them. The individual is then able to experience a cognitive shift with respect to the traumatic experience.”
Yes, there are still a lot of people who think writing is not as critical as it is today. These individuals are perhaps too busy understanding the world rather than living in it. But one thing is sure; life is not always as it is. And when people try to learn to put the details in a paper, they will see that everything they experience is only a part of a bigger story.
People write for so many reasons. They write because it helps them reduce their anxiety and depression. “Moving your worries from your head to paper is a great stress reducer,” says Ryan Howes, a clinical psychologist. “Part of the stress is worrying that you’ll forget what you’re worried about. Writing it out helps you forget momentarily, he said. It also can improve your sleep, he added.
Others write for self-expression. Some individuals believe it to be their passion. And some use it as a reminder of the great things in their lives. Whatever the reason is, people know that writing is a beneficial tool that does not only cater to their needs. It also assists them in their journey of knowing themselves.
Writing allows people to become themselves. When individuals write something from their past, it provides realization. When they write things from present experience, they learn and grow. And when people write stuff that they want to achieve in the future, it becomes a path towards a successful goal.
Writing And Its Benefits
- Writing impacts mental health because people use their imagination and creativity in creating content. There is a sense of belongingness that keeps them mentally conditioned. Since it also caters to address and reduce signs and symptoms of mental illness, it becomes significant for psychological growth and balance. Deborah Serani, PsyD, says, “There’s a lot of science grounding expressive language writing and journaling as being an extremely helpful piece for maintaining mental wellness. You don’t want patients just to use their 50-minute sessions to process what’s going on in their lives. Instead, we should be helping them create a toolbox of ways to express themselves that they can use not only outside of therapy but in place of therapy at some point.”
- Writing does not only assist in relieving mental health conditions but also supports its awareness. When writing, people begin to have a realization of the mental and emotional state they currently experience. It leaves ideas and opinions open because writers tend to research about possible treatments and helpful guides.
- Writing is not something that everybody can enjoy. That is a fact. Some individuals find it time-consuming and perhaps inapplicable to certain situations. But regardless of that, writing proves to be one of the most convenient methods for self-expression. It does support not only mental awareness but also impacts self-consciousness.
- Writing is a form of art. However, the best part of it is the disciplines and principles that connect it to the world. In writing, there are lots of things to do. It can be a blog that shares opinions to the public. It can be a story that depicts reality. It can also be a piece of detailed information that is useful to people. And it can be something that can push individuals by reaching their goals. Writing is everything.
You see, it is not just writing. Yes, it is not something that people can often do because it takes time, energy, effort, ideas, and thoughts. But the overall combination of those things is beneficial for the emotional and mental development of people. That is regardless if they are suffering from a psychological condition, and they are experiencing physical discomfort, or they are not emotionally conditioned. Writing can mean more than just a piece of paper and a pen.
It is essential to note that writing is not a cure for all the mental and emotional conditions that people have. It is also not a suitable solution for those people who find it impossible to write. There are still considerations and restrictions as to how and when writing should become a tool. But regardless of those hindrances, one thing is sure. Writing is not just about writing.
“I’ve seen this time and time again with some of my friends’ blogs — they share feelings and thoughts that I’d have a hard time getting from them in-person. Especially since many times people blog as they’re going through an emotional or difficult situation in their lives. It’s so much easier to blog about it as it’s happening than to try and call and talk to a half dozen close people by phone, repeating the same information and feelings time and time again (which can result in an emotional drain).” John Grohol, PsyD.
Every writing experience differs from one person to another. That is because there are a variety of genres and approach. Some of the writers create content with detailed information, while others tend to blog. Some writers want to make their content simple, while some wish to it academically related. But the common thing about these bloggers or writers is their experience on hidden traps.
What people do not know is that blogging can be very lonely. Perhaps that is due to the times that writers are all by themselves. They sit in front of their computer or laptop all day while having deep thoughts about the things around. These people get obsessed about creating a better article content that helps and informs people. In unfortunate instances, these bloggers obsessed with the wrong things. With that, let us talk about what mistakes that bloggers often unnoticingly do.
Writing Without Research
Blogging is a form of writing that talks to people directly. It states experience and feelings in content. It often focuses on public engagement, as well. But given its not-so-strict- approach, some bloggers miss out an essential requirement when writing – research. Not because blogging is writing that typical tells and says anything, it does not mean writers should create content that gets based on false information. Since blogging aims to share information through engaging content, it still requires details that are perhaps true and near people’s expectations.
Not Considering Their Readers
Most times, writers white because they try and express themselves. They want people to understand their ideas and thoughts. However, what some of these bloggers often forget is the purpose of their content. Some writers do not consider their readers and only care about their page views. Meaning, these people create a dull, unrelated, and misleading content that entirely wants nothing but exposure. It is still a way of branding, though. But this type of method that some bloggers do to get the public’s attention rips their chance of becoming a better blogger instead.
Blogging Without A Niche
Sure, there a lot of article contents out there that bloggers can write. They can blog about food, travel, hotels, business, and all the stuff that interests them. But the thing is, bloggers often create a mistake in writing because they disregard the importance of having a niche. They usually write about twenty to thirty articles that do not seem relatable. With those entire different niches, these writers get bombarded with a lot of resources that soon make them feel overwhelmed. As a result, they somehow lose focus.
Yes, blogging is an art. It is a way for writers to express themselves and point out opinions they have. However, there are specific considerations that bloggers should understand. Not because writing is fun and easy, it should get done improperly. So for those bloggers out there who want to create inspiring and engaging content make sure you do not focus on these common mistakes.
Art can take many forms, all of which are therapeutic in so many ways. For me, something that makes you happy and keeps you from thinking about your problems certainly affects your mental health positively. Writing therapy, for example, is for the mind and soul. Writing therapy is a powerful weapon that enables one to release negativity through the words that he jots down. Writing therapy allows one to face challenges while instilling some coping skills to solve these challenges.
“Moving your worries from your head to paper is a great stress reducer,” says Ryan Howes, a clinical psychologist. “Part of the stress is worrying that you’ll forget what you’re worried about. Writing it out helps you forget momentarily, he said. It also can improve your sleep,” he adds.
Read on and understand how writing works and what this therapy does for us.
What is the concept behind writing therapy? It is simply to write what you feel and what you think about things with no hesitation and no prejudice. You don’t have to determine whether it’s appropriate or not, polite or rude. Don’t be ashamed or scared either. Don’t set rules for yourself. Just go ahead and sit, stand, or lie on your belly and get your pen and paper.
The important concept to remember is that writing should come from your heart, not your mind.
Contrary to what some people think, there is quite a bit of difference between writing therapy and journaling. When you say journaling, your goal is to effectively document events and the emotions associated with these events. You can also use journaling the same way as writing as therapy but writing is not limited only to the therapy itself.
On the other hand, when you’re writing for the purpose of therapy, the writing focus is on the trauma or the reason behind your pain. You write about why you are hurt. Like journaling, this therapy is also primarily for you and your satisfaction. It doesn’t need to be validated by others – even by you. You actually don’t have to read what you write, as its purpose is only to feel relieved and lighter. You don’t have to worry so much about grammar, sentence structure, and errors, among others.
“It’s about being the witness to ourselves and for ourselves. We can hold the larger context together by having a simultaneous perspective of being in the moment, being the wise self or observing ego, and knowing that you have the strength and resilience to get through it. It’s the concrete manifestation, the ink on paper or pixels on screen, which provides a tangible reality that we can relate and come back to.” – Kathleen Adams, LPC.
How Can You Make Writing Therapy Effective?
There are two ways to make writing a therapeutic art form. The first is its typical description and the second one is based on personal experience.
- Don’t Force It. You know you want to write about the pain and suffering, but you can’t find the words or you don’t feel like writing yet. You don’t need to force yourself to write something. You can wait until your pen finds the paper but you just have to keep trying. Today might not be the day, but tomorrow might. While you’re waiting, you’ll also grow stronger, more patient, and apparently more resilient.
- Write Now. This second one I learned through my many attempts of resolving my problems through writing. I did the first suggestion and it did work but the process was slow for me. When I encouraged myself to write anything and everything I felt that day, despite the fact that I didn’t want to write because I couldn’t confront the truth with my words, I inserted some phrases that used the third person. I used ‘she’ and ‘her’ instead of ‘I’ and ‘me.’ This really helped me a lot.
Before we move on, let me just remind you that one doesn’t have to be a great writer or to have a lengthy writing experience. Just let yourself be guided by your emotions, what you’ve been through, and practically anything you want to put down on paper.
Below are the benefits of writing therapy.
- Improves Emotional Health. Just as you want to take care of your physical health, you should also do well to protect your emotional health. When you write as therapy, this prevents you from bottling your emotions and keeping you depressed and frustrated because you have not released the negativity. Writing down your pain reduces your sadness and softens your heart. You will grow more hope in you and will soon look forward to better days.
According to Cynthia McKay, a psychotherapist, “Expressing yourself in a journal can bring your thoughts and feelings to the surface. Many people are surprised by what they write,” she says. “You may discover you’re worried about something you didn’t know was upsetting you until you wrote it down.”
- Promotes Discipline. Committing to doing therapeutic writing daily for a mere 15 to 20 minutes establishes some kind of routine that will help you instill discipline and avoid procrastination. If you think of it as a task and responsibility, you will initially be forced to get up and write what you can without feeling it. But after a few days, you’ll realize how much it has helped you and then you’ll make it a habit to release everything that’s in your heart and mind before even starting your day.
- Be Honest But Try To Be Positive. Yes, writing as a therapy somehow requires you to be honest about what you put on paper, because after all, it’s about how you feel, right? What I mean is, you don’t have to literally write everything you feel the negative way. Instead of saying, “I don’t know how long I can stand the pain,” you can write, “I know I’m in pain right now, but I am hopeful that things will be all right.” You don’t have to write, “This day just sucks,” although it’s how you honestly feel. Rather, you can say, “Well, there are days worst than this.”
What Information Can You Take Away From This Therapy?
I have tried different kinds of art for therapeutic purposes, and I’d say that writing therapy has indeed helped me move on. It has opened my eyes to my strengths and weakness, and to the fact that no one is spared from negativity. But know that whoever you are, you are armed with a lot of weapons, and among the strongest ones that will save you might just be a pen and a paper!
Depression, anxiety, and stress can be very overwhelming, and you might feel emotionally exhausted and afraid that you might not be able to finish even simple tasks. This can lead to overthinking that will not derail you from doing anything productive. (Ask a psychologist about it, and he will agree.)
Many people write to express their feelings and emotions. For some people, it is a hobby to jot down all the things that enter their mind as well as talk about what they are going through. At the same time, there are also some individuals who write because it is a significant part of their career. Unfortunately, there are times when the said professional suffers from a writer’s block. If you are suffering from this, make sure to read this article as I will share some tips that I got from the 2015 Lansing rally of writers conference.
Take A Break
Whenever you encounter a writer’s block or a moment when you are lost with what to write, the best option that you can do is to rest for a while. Do not be afraid to take a break from your regular activities and try something new. It is an excellent way to recharge your brain.
If you have no idea on what to write on your essay or article, another option that you can do is to try freestyle writing. All you have to do is write down anything that enters your mind. Let your thoughts flow until you find one that makes sense and can inspire you to write again.
As a writer, it is essential for you to have an active lifestyle. Take note that it can be dangerous for your health if you will keep on facing your laptop and sit all day. Sometimes, you have to get moving to activate your brain cells and inspire you to become more productive.
Keep in mind that having a writer’s block is only normal. This phase is only temporary. You can soon get back to writing as long as you know how to follow the tips mentioned above.
Anxiety is a mental disorder that should not be taken lightly. The condition must be treated by the affected person at the soonest possible time. Considering the mental health issue aside will only make things worse, and it can also affect the people around the person who is suffering from it, as well.
Whether you’re a newbie blogger or an old-timey one, attending blogging conferences, such as the 2016 Austin Blogging Conference, is always a must. There are so many things to learn in a blogging conference—like how to direct traffic to your blog, how to increase your brand, or how to gain a healthy readership. Experienced bloggers and experts in the field do the lectures in these blogging conferences, so you’ll be sure to learn expert, reliable advice when you attend. The skills they teach in these conferences can be applied to your blog and website so you too can be as successful as they are.
Highlights Of Blogging Conferences
In 2016, Austin had a blogging conference called #BlogathonATX. What makes these conferences so special? These blogging conferences specifically talk of niche topics you can use in your blog. They spoke about ‘Knowing Your Reader and Defining Your Voice’ to let your blog get its distinctive voice that your readers can easily recognize and relate to. The conference also had special blogging panels like: ‘Blogging For Real’, which talks about creating and maintaining a blog for commercial and business purposes, and ‘Getting What You Want From Your Blog’ which is a panel on discussing how to foster results from your expected blog activity.
Social media experts and experienced bloggers run the Blogathon conferences. They organize specific panels catering to the needs of the up-and-coming bloggers. Additionally, they keep up with the social media trends—not just for viewership, but also how to rank your blogs and optimize your landing pages. Bloggers from all over—not only natives from Austin come and attend these conferences. You’d get to meet new friends and potential blogging partners as you continue to attend these conferences.
Why Should You Attend?
Blogging conferences are made for bloggers. If you’re a blogger, or curious about blogging and how to make the most of your platform, then you should attend blogging conferences. By participating in these, you’re making yourself visible outside of your online platform. You meet important people, encounter brands, and learn about social media techniques to get your blog noticed. Plus—every event has free food and fun games and activities, so you’ll definitely have a blast attending one!