In season one, episode 16 of Jane the Virgin, Jane gets some great advice on how to resolve her writer's block: “The problem isn't where you think it is. It's often further back.”
I've been realizing how true this is for my own writer's block, which, as you may have noticed, got so bad last week that I just didn't post anything at all. I think the biggest problem “further back” at the root of my writer's block is the fact that I have too many unwritten thoughts stuck in my head about some intense things that have happened in the last year that I'm not ready to share on the blog yet. As my friend Owen has written, “the way to have more ideas is to use the ones you have,” and I haven't “used” those ideas because I can't use them in a blog post, so I'm having a hard time coming up with new ideas that I can blog about. Why haven't I just written these thoughts down in a personal journal, you ask? Well, my mind thinks, why go through the overwhelming process of writing about intense emotional stuff if there’s no productive “payout”? It's not great logic, but it's there (thanks, capitalism!). The irony is that writing out those thoughts will make them less overwhelming, and obviously, the benefit that processing would have to my mental well-being should be “payout” enough.
But because I'm not great at doing things just for my own benefit, I'm hoping the fact that not journaling has now started to affect my blogging ability and therefore my readers will give me the push I need to do it, and that I will eventually learn to do self-care practices for my own sake and not just because not doing them affects other people or my productivity. And actually, lack of self-care in general is probably the problem that’s the furthest back of all.