I planned a different article today.
I’d written it a couple of weeks ago, smugly thinking I’d get ahead of the game before I went on holiday.
But when I opened it again yesterday to get it ready to publish?
Oh dear. It was Dullsville, USA.
As boring as people who tell you about their dreams.
Drearier than our joke of a British summer this year.
Duller than that friend who Instagrams her food.
And then I remembered – I’d been bored writing it too. The weeks of solid grey skies had been getting to me and I was out of inspiration and oomph.
I should have known better. Because here’s what I’ve learnt over the years.
Whatever you’re writing – an email, report, presentation, article, proposal – if you’re bored writing it, your audience will be bored reading it.
Now that doesn’t mean writing should be easy. In fact the opposite – if it feels hard then it usually means you’re putting in some serious brain work.
But writing shouldn’t ever feel boring – even if you’re writing about ‘post-trade, pre-settlement trade processing solutions’ (which I actually did for many years.)
There’s always magic to be found.
So my advice to you and myself too (yes, these emails are free therapy for me) is this:
If the boredom creeps in – stop writing.
Take a walk. Read a book. Do some burpees/stretches. Chat to a colleague or neighbour. Pet your dog/cat/piranha. If you can, take a longer break. There’s nothing like a holiday to reboot your inspiration.
Anything to pull yourself out of the abyss of ennui. Come at it again when you have fresh eyes and fresh ideas.
Because writing isn’t the end goal. Getting someone to read it is.