Inspiration is one of those things you really wish someone would bottle up and sell, because you would buy ten cases of it. Unfortunately, it’s not something tangible that we can summon at a moment’s notice. As bloggers, though, we all know that feeling when you can’t come up with a new idea.
It’s frustrating, and it holds you back from where you want to be.
That’s why today’s post is all about finding the illusive inspiration you’re looking for. Let’s take a look at ten ways to put your creativity into overdrive and build healthy habits for your blogging.
1. Take a Step Back
Trying to force creativity is a lot like trying to lift more weight than you know you can handle. In other words, you’re bound to pull something. Creativity comes to you, but only if you’re open to receive it. Trying to brute force ideas will only make you tired and stressed out.
This is why it’s important to find those moments where you can take a step back, breathe, and focus on something else for a moment. Your subconscious will continue to work the problem and you’ll have the opportunity to reset. It’s for this reason that I like to follow the Pomodoro Method during my work days.
If you give yourself moments to rest and reset for just a few minutes, you’ll find that creativity and inspiration comes a lot easier.
2. Stick to What You Know
Venturing into unknown territory is always a good idea for growth and expanding your knowledge, but it’s rarely a way to find inspiration. The reason of course being that you don’t have familiarity with this new subject or topic.
Instead, stay within your niche and your knowledge base while looking for new ideas. Playing within the boundaries of your expertise will give you a home field advantage as you’re trying to create new ideas.
3. Keep a List Handy
There are plenty of places out there where you can find examples of blog post ideas. Lists like these are a great resource when you need a little creative push in the right direction. I recommend keeping them bookmarked so you can refer to them when you need something to work with.
4. Focus on Questions & Answers
The best way to get some ideas moving, is to think about your blog post in terms of questions and answers. Check your blog comments, your social media profiles, anywhere you engage with your audience. What questions do they have? What problems are they trying to solve through your content?
If you can find the questions, your posts will be the answers. That’s a great way to find inspiration for useful content.
5. Keep a Notebook Handy
Creativity and inspiration doesn’t work on anyone’s schedule, least of all your own. You may get ideas while brushing your teeth, taking a walk, or shopping at the grocery store. If you prefer a digital notebook, that’s fine, but I like having something physical to write ideas on.
Keep it handy, so when ideas hit you, you can write them down and keep them handy for later.
6. Set up Google Alerts
This free and handy tool allows you to input keywords and create alerts for yourself. Whenever these terms appear in mainstream news and media, or on blogs, you’ll be notified via email. You can set up a Google Alert in just a few minutes.
7. Invite a Guest Author
Sometimes you just need some time away to recharge your batteries. It happens to all of us, so why not give other bloggers the chance to enjoy the spotlight? Set up a page on your blog for guest post authors and give them the basic guidelines you’d like from their posts.
This way, people can send you pitches for posts that they will write. You only need to publish them, or give them the option to create a guest account and do it themselves. You get great content, and who knows, one of their ideas could spur another post you’ll do yourself.
8. Talk About Mistakes
It’s not easy to admit our mistakes, but they make for great blog posts. Not to mention, we should be helping our fellow bloggers avoid the same mistakes we’ve made in the past. Think about a time you really wished you had known something about blogging or your niche. Write a post about it.
That way, next time someone finds themselves in that type of situation, hopefully they’ll have the tools they need to avoid that same mistake.
9. Try a Topic Generator
These can be hit or miss, but if all else fails and you need something to go off of, you can try a blog topic generator. Here are some of the better options:
10. Build a Skyscraper
That’s right. Quit your job as a blogger and go become an architect. I’m kidding. What I’m actually referring to here is the Skyscraper Technique from Backlinko’s Brian Dean. This tactic has long been an inspiration for me.
It involves seeking out content that is doing well, and then building something bigger and better. It’s about being the tallest skyscraper on the block. It’s so simple, yet so effective. It can be a great way to find inspiration for your next successful post.
Inspiration is something you can’t chase or catch. It has to come to you, but with these tactics, you can entice it to come and stay a while.
How do you find inspiration? Let us know in the comments!