Those who write consistently understand that, more often than not, the most challenging parts of writing are getting started and keeping that momentum going. With more distractions vying for your attention every day, it can feel like the world is telling you not to write. But for business writers, that’s not an option—your job depends on it! Fortunately, all hope is not lost. Distraction free writing is a real possibility when you pair the right strategies with a tool like Slice.
If you’re unable to focus when writing, this blog can serve as a resource to help you work toward writing distraction-free.
How to Avoid Distractions While Writing?
Whether for work or pleasure, writing is not always as simple as sitting down and typing. There are times when hours of research occur before the first keystroke. Distractions are the most significant barrier to productive stretches. Let’s look at some common writing distractions and how to avoid them.
- Social Media: The first distraction that came to mind, right? Social media is ever-present in today’s world. While social media allows for some great ways to connect with people worldwide, productivity is often negatively affected. It’s so easy to access–how can you put it aside to focus?
- Put your phone away while working
- Close all non-work browser tabs
- Only allow notifications from work
- Environment: For those who are working consistently in-office, interruptions from co-workers are a constant distraction that pulls us away from writing. An effective workaround would be to schedule writing time around meetings or parts of the day when you know you won’t be interacting with members of your team. In the past, working from home a few days a week might have been able to fix these kinds of distractions, but this is not the case anymore. As more people work consistently from home, distractions become more pervasive. Some of us do not have a home office and work from the couch or kitchen table. These are not the most productive settings and allow for distractions like snacking or watching TV. To counteract this, head out and work from a new location to give yourself a jolt of energy. Try a coffee shop, library, park, or another quiet area. Sitting too long in the same spot can dull our brains and put us in a slump. Get out and mix it up!
- Internal Distractions: So far, we have addressed the more obvious external environmental distractions, which can be managed. Internal distractions, on the other hand, are harder to identify and resolve. Your thoughts and emotions can impact your writing process in a significant way. Stress from work or your personal life can pull you out of the state you need to be in to write. One way to help with internal distractions is to practice mindfulness, rather than ignoring the thoughts or feelings. Being in the present will allow you to think and decide clearly on what you need to do to get into the right headspace to write. A simple strategy you can implement is taking a 5-minute break to practice mindfulness activities.
- Writer’s Block: More of a result from distractions than one itself, writer’s block is still an important issue to address. Sometimes, no matter how hard we prepare, we end up in ruts where we can’t seem to get anything good down on the page. Forcing yourself to stare at a blank screen won’t help anything either. Instead, take a break to go for a walk, work on something else, or just step outside to get some fresh air. When we’ve been working or thinking about something for an extended period of time, giving our brain permission to be unfocused for a few minutes can make all the difference. Coming back to work with a refreshed mind and rested eyes will help with any distraction.
Distractions primarily come from a lack of focus or interest in the current work. If all other attempts to break from distractions aren’t working, try this method from author Neil Gaiman. One of his approaches to helping with distractions or writer’s block is genuinely simple: “Write or do nothing.” You don’t need to be writing every second, but you are not allowed to do anything else when you aren’t writing. The idea is that doing nothing will be so dull comparatively that it will bring you back to writing. Everyone is different, so try out other methods and discover what works best for you.
Where Can I Type Freely?
Simply finding a quiet place to work and firing up your preferred software to write in isn’t enough. Many writing apps are available, yet the best free writing apps often leave you wanting much more. The problem is that, as writers, we are writing in one area, managing projects in another, and researching somewhere else. This negatively impacts focus and productivity while adding to the already abundant list of distractions.
That’s one of the primary reasons we created Slice. We put focus at the forefront of our service by allowing writers to conduct all of their work in the same place. Managing projects, recording notes and research, and the writing itself is now in the same workspace—no more jumping from tab to tab to produce your work.
Slice: Putting the Writer First
Other creative fields, like design, have software studios. Writers, on the other hand, are still just typing on the same old blank page. We understand the mental gymnastics required to write well, and that’s why we created a tool that gets out of your way so you can think, research, and write. If you want to write without distraction, check out our software studio for writers today!