I love content creation. I love content writing. I love content consumption. I LOVE content.
All of the above is true. That is until I hit the content block, or the creative content curse as I like to refer to it.
The content curse is the worst feeling in the world.
If you’ve experienced this, you will know what I am referring to. It’s that feeling, that pressure, that frustration, that need to create something, but the fog of the curse just blocks the words from coming. Whether you are a video first content creator, or maybe you’re a modern-day Charles Dickens, maybe you are the graphics guy or girl, or maybe you are just a content Jedi who can do it all.
Whatever your poison when it comes to content creation, it all goes out the window when the content curse hits.
Fear not there is good news in this article, and light at the end of the content tunnel. I am going to share how I ‘crush the curse!’
I should be clear, I am not a marketeer by trade, training, or background. Yes, I am that person who will occasionally catch myself uttering ‘I love marketing, I love content, it’s my passion.’ I can imagine how frustrating that must be for someone who has worked and trained throughout their career in marketing to hear. It’s needs must for me I am. Yes, I enjoy writing and producing content, but being honest I have not been in a position to hire someone to do it for Digital 51 just yet. So it’s me!
This article is not about how to create content in the first place, as there are without doubts some technical aspects you need to consider when starting the content journey. You might however want to give this article a read if you are about to start the content journey.
This article is how I escape the curse. How I get from under the position where I just could not type a single word if you paid me. For context I produce about 3 pieces of content a week personally; a 1000 word article, a 300 word LinkedIn post, and a 60 second video. I then aim to produce a further 2 pieces of content for Digital 51.
I am not a huge content producer, but I guess size and volume is relevant right?
So, how do I beat the content curse? Check out my FIVE hints and tips below:
- Accept where you are:
They say the first step to solving you have a problem, is admitting you have a problem. OK, clearly, I have stolen this from the AA 12 steps, but honestly it is the same for content creation. If your content creation starts to slow, or become harder to do, then you need to acknowledge that. For me I just know, however in the early days of my content creation, I had no idea what has happened, why I’d just stopped.
Accept where you are, and tell yourself knowing the problem is a good thing.
- Take a break:
Content is like anything in life, you can’t just keep doing something repeatedly. For me, once I have realised I am in the grip of the curse, I take a break. That break does not need to be a full summer sabbatical, it can just be a weekend, a week, or however long is needed. But I tell myself I am off content creation for a while, and there is no need for me to worry about it.
Take a break. Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
- Hoard everything:
I am often laughed at for my content hoarding. I travel with a small set of scissors at all times, both virtual and physical. Why? Because I am that person sat in the corner of a coffee shop you will see cutting things out and stuffing them in a bag. I also do the same with the snippet tool on my laptop, I see something, I snip something, I send it to myself. The largest volume of e-mails in my inbox is me e-mailing myself things which are titled ‘read me, use this, this is good Simon!’
Store, hoard it, go back to it. When the curse hits, you will need ideas to come back to, hoarding is your safety net here.
- Write list, then do nothing:
Once you have reviewed your treasure chest of content ideas, write down a list of things you think will make good ideas, you’ll be amazed what comes out. However, don’t do anything. Remember we are not just in a blip here, we are in the full blown throes of recovering from the content curse. So write your list of ideas, but don’t action them. Take another day or two, still don’t produce content, and then you will be really refreshed, but when you come back to you, half the battle is won, as you have a list!
Tease me, tease me, tease me content, until I lose control! I tease myself with my list of ideas, but I don’t allow myself to access the list straight away.
- Be a content cowboy or cowgirl, but don’t forget cowboys live on horses.
Just start writing, vlogging, creating graphics, you know how to do it, you just need to do it. Don’t go for perfect, go for complete; this is not about producing an earth shattering piece of content, this is about producing a piece of content. We have to get back on the horse.
You are a content cowgirl/cowboy, you live for content, we both know that, but cowgirls and boys live on horses, so get back on that horse.
Do I know what I am talking about, does any of the above make sense, and or help? I don’t know, you will have to decide that yourself. All I know is that I am a content cowboy who is coming out of a bad case of the creative curse. I wrote this article idea down whilst sat in a coffee shop last Saturday, today was about writing an article, and sharing an article. Just completing the task, back on my horse.
This article is living, breathing proof that the creative content curse is real, but the above FIVE steps are a proven way out of it.
This article was written by Simon Brown, Founder of Digital 51, who not only seems to refer to himself as Digital Simon at times, but has now decided he is a cowboy. Seriously how egotistical can one person be?! If you suffer from the creative curse, or more importantly have other solutions to the curse, please reach out and tell Simon on