The following article details the three top ways to avoid writer’s block when writing a research paper, thesis, or dissertation. First of all, schedule specific writing times in your calendar. Secondly, make sure you take plenty of breaks and have a plan for dealing with stress. Finally, try not to agonize over every minor detail.
Anyone who’s ever attempted to write a major research paper, thesis, or dissertation understands the term “writer’s block.” Sometimes, we’ll do ANYTHING to avoid sitting down and putting pen to paper (or hand to keyboard for you high-tech folk). If you’re looking for some practical and easy ways to eliminate this frustrating phenomenon, read on.
First, plan out how much time you have to work on your thesis or paper per week and mark “writing time” appointments into your day-timer or calendar. Treat these the same as you would a doctor’s or dentist’s appointment. If it helps, plan to do your work at the library or an office so that you will be less tempted to “skip” your appointment by watching TV, doing your nails, or defrosting your freezer.
Secondly, make sure to take plenty of breaks (say, every half hour or so). This will help keep you from falling into a “mental rut.” In addition, if you get overly stressed or frustrated (and you will!), have some activities planned to calm you down. For example, some people find having a cup of tea, doing some yoga, meditating, or performing deep breathing exercises to be effective at lowering their anxieties.
Lastly, try not to agonize over every little word that you write. Just focus on being productive, regardless of the outcome. Something poorly written can be edited and revised later. However, it’s hard to improve upon a blank page. Enlisting the assistance of a professional dissertation editing service, such as FirstEditing.com can make a huge difference in your final draft. Plus, knowing that you’re going to have a professional editor looking over your work and helping you with grammar, flow, and word choice can make the thought of being getting started a lot easier. Don’t forget to flag words or phrases that you were stuck on so that your dissertation editor can focus on the key areas you feel you need extra help with.
So remember—mark up your calendar with specific “writing appointments,” take breaks and find techniques for combating stress, and remember that it’s called a “rough draft” for a reason. Good luck and happy writing!