We’ve all been there -- a deadline for a paper is fast approaching, but no matter what you do, you can’t seem to get through your writer’s block make a coherent thought come out of your brain. Maybe you have no ideas at all, or maybe you have so many that they are all getting jumbled up together. There’s a thin line between these two ends of the spectrum. Good ideas worth exploring don’t come around often for me, so when they do it frustrates me to no end if I can’t get them out on paper the way I want to. The most annoying thing about having writer’s block, however, is that it’s not all bad.

The worst part about writer’s block having to force ideas out at the times when your brain feels completely empty. Sometimes it’s because I’ve been working hard on so many other things and have no energy leftover. This lack of ideas makes me feel empty and frustrated at myself. I feel exhausted from all the fruitless effort that I’ve put into my work, making me want to give up altogether. However, having a clear mind is sometimes also one of the best feelings. Also, working so hard to come with ideas allows me to find new depths to my creativity that I didn’t know I had, as well as achieve a new level of perseverance.

In contrast, having too many ideas in my head is almost just as bad. My thoughts get so jumbled up that it becomes difficult to even just list them on paper because I can’t tell where one ends and another begins. After forcing ideas out over a prolonged period of time, I’ll start to lose confidence in my work after having spent so many hours looking at it. A positive thing about this, though, is that it encourages me to reach out to me peers or other writers who provide me with a fresh perspective. I’ve made great connections with people by sharing my writing, and returning the favor when they need another pair of eyes to read theirs.

In short, writer’s block is a double-edged sword in the sense that it is insanely frustrating, but also a fantastic learning opportunity. One minute, I feel worthless when I can’t get any work done. The next, I am super proud of myself for overcoming a seemingly insurmountable obstacle. I may complain about my writer’s block during the hardest times, but the unavoidable truth is that it makes the best times feel so much better.