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Content Writing Without Going Brain Dead

I dabbled with content writing part-time for months before quitting my job to do it full-time. I wanted to be sure I could make a living with it and was thrilled to find that I enjoyed it. However, I quickly learned that full-time content writing is not as easy as I thought.

I got lucky and stumbled upon a client who liked my work during my first week of full-time writing. He needed dozens of articles written about Halloween costumes. I enjoyed it at first and thought, “I can’t believe I’m getting paid to do this!” Then, fatigue set in. Finding 1,200 words to describe a Wonder Woman costume started to be a chore. That project gave me steady work for a month, but it was exhausting.

It’s been almost a year since I made the leap to writing from home. I’m the main earner in our family, so I’ve had to find ways to power through the days when content writing makes me feel brain dead. Here are the strategies that help me:

  1. Remember Why You’re Doing This – I adopted my daughter from the foster care system two years ago when she was 9 years old. She has emotional and behavioral special needs because of the trauma she endured in her early years. Balancing her needs with working outside of the home was impossible. She has thrived knowing I am home if she needs me during the day. When my brain starts shutting down, I think of her. Working from home is what is best for my daughter and that gives me the power I need to spend the day writing about portable toilets or anything else.
  2. Take Breaks – Walk away from the screen every hour. Even a five-minute break does wonders sometimes. I often set up my Nintendo Wii “Fit” balance board and do a few games throughout the day. It shakes up my brain and helps keep my body from getting stiff from sitting all day. Take a lunch break. Your body needs the fuel and your brain needs the rest.
  3. Keep Writing in Other Ways – This is probably the last thing you want to do after writing boring articles each day. Take a few minutes each week to do the type of writing you enjoy, such as fiction, blogging or writing about topics that interest you. This helps writing remain an activity you enjoy.
  4. Be Social – Spending the day with only my cats to talk to was making me crazy. I try to arrange a coffee date at least weekly. I go down my Facebook friend list inviting people until someone agrees.
  5. Think of the Perks – Freelancing offers freedom and flexibility. You get to work from home while sitting in your underwear on the couch if you choose. There are no annoying coworkers or egomaniac bosses to deal with. There’s also no commute. You can work poolside or take an afternoon nap. There’s plenty to like about content writing.

Rachael M is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.

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