Don’t Let Bad Days Stop You From Writing

A writer’s best work comes from when they’re struggling

Photo by Yang Miao on Unsplash

Today has been a rough day for me. I’ve been procrastinating all day long and I’m not feeling too great emotionally or mentally. I’ve been discouraging myself from writing, convincing myself that I don’t have anything meaningful to say. But here I am, writing despite all of these negative feelings and thoughts. Writing may just be the one thing you need to salvage a bad week. But that’s a lot easier said than done.

Writing is not a simple task. The art of writing requires one to dive deeper into one’s mind, and sometimes that can seem scary. As much as I love to write, sometimes I’m afraid to sit down and take the time to face my troubles head-on. I want so badly to write something honest and real that I end up losing myself in the process. Rather than believing in what I write, I constantly tell myself that it is not good enough. Trying to convey what you mean through words all while attempting to keep your reader interested can be difficult, to say the least. Writing isn’t like stand-up comedy, you see your audience’s reaction right away. If a joke doesn’t land, you know to change things up. But writing is a more lengthy process. If a reader doesn’t connect with what you’ve written, you have to take the time to reflect on your work to better understand their point of view. They may just not be a fan of your writing style, or maybe you didn’t express your thoughts clearly enough. Writing is not a skill that comes overnight. It requires dedication, persistence, and as much as we hate to admit it…bad days.

No one is immune to bad days. Especially with how the state of the world has been lately, I think we’ve all had our fair share. Sometimes when we’re not feeling our best we just don’t feel like writing. Simple as that. If I’m having an off day, I tend to only focus on the bad, which then leads me to believe that there’s no point in writing. Which is kind of ironic. Most of the time, I write because I’m feeling incomplete, in a way, and writing fills this sort of void for me. But then you have days where you convince yourself even writing can’t make things better. And sure, maybe writing won’t make your day any better, but that isn’t a good enough excuse to stop writing.

Write about what’s stopping you from writing

If I’m having a bad day, I will without a doubt be affected mentally as well as emotionally. I will convince myself that I shouldn’t write simply because I believe whatever I write will end up being bad. I make myself think that it’s better to write nothing at all than to write something truly terrible. This is not true! We are our biggest critics. The next time you are feeling this way, I urge you to try and write about whatever is stopping you from writing. Whether it’s your own self-doubt, a negative encounter with someone, whatever that may be. Write real but sorrowful poetry about how you lose faith in yourself when you need it most. Write a non-fiction essay analyzing why exactly you’re feeling the way you are. Writing is a liberating way to further process everything you may be feeling or thinking. Use your self-doubt as your muse. Self-criticism is universal and chances are there is someone else feeling the same way but too afraid to write about it.

Write for your reader

If you cannot find the courage to write for yourself, find the bravery to write for others. It’s kind of like when you’re at a restaurant and your order gets messed up but you don’t want to bother anybody by bringing it up. But the second your friend says what they received is not what they ordered, you will not rest until they are satisfied. This is because we care so much for those around us. We don’t usually mind if things don’t go our way, but the second our friends or family are involved, we do whatever we can to ensure they are safe and content. It’s okay that we cannot always find the energy to do things for ourselves. Instead, write for your reader. Write because you’re afraid someone else needs you to say the things they are too afraid too. I know I probably wouldn’t have found the inspiration to write about half the things I do if it weren’t for other writers who provided me with the comfort and reassurance I needed during times of uncertainty.

Take back the control with your writing

When I’m having a bad day, all I want is for something to just go right. I become tired of feeling like everything is going wrong. If you’re also feeling this way, writing can be the one thing that can make you feel as if you are in control. If you’re writing a fictional story, you hold the power in your words. You control what your characters look like, what they say, and what happens to them. Writing provides us a bit of a break from the real world. Consider starting a new story. Use your bad day for inspiration. If you had an upsetting encounter with a co-worker or a friend, use it in your writing. As much as writing is comforting for the reader, is just as therapeutic for the writer. Just remember though, if you are writing about an experience that happened to you, make sure to not describe certain details too similarly. You don’t want to write about someone you know in an unflattering light only for them to realize you’re writing about them. Write to take back control. Write because you deserve to feel content.

Prove the universe wrong

As weird as this one may sound, hear me out for a second. Use your bad day as a source of revenge. Now I don’t mean for you to go out and seek revenge on anyone. I simply mean use your bad day as an excuse to prove the universe wrong. Keep writing despite the challenges you’ve been facing. These struggles you are experiencing may just be the universe testing your limits. Don’t let the bad days get to you; instead, merely use them as inspiration. Keep writing because you feel you have something to prove. Don’t let upsetting experiences stop you from achieving the peace you deserve.

Writing on its own can be a difficult task, but add a bad day on top of that and it just may feel like the end of the world. But I promise you it isn’t.

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