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10 Guaranteed Ways to Never Run Out of Blog Post Ideas (#1)

“How do you come up with post ideas?”

A few weeks ago, I was with one of my dear blogging friends and she asked me this question. She went on to explain how she wants to blog more often, but she struggles to come with inspiration for what she should post.

Honestly, I’ve never really thought about the how behind coming up with ideas. In fact, I usually have many more ideas than I have space and time to write.

But her question really got me to thinking about what fuels my blogging inspiration. And as I’ve mulled over it the past few weeks, I came up with a number of things that I find help me to always have post ideas and inspiration.

Since this is a question I’ve been asked before, I thought I’d share my list with you all in hopes that it might spark some ideas for those of you who are feeling like you’re in a blogging slump. I had initially planned to share this as one post, but it got so long that I decided to break it up and just share one idea per week day for the next two weeks so that it was easier to read — and not some massively long and impossible-to-read-in-one-sitting post!

#1 Live Vibrantly {Offline}

A vibrant offline life will fuel your online creativity. Make sure you have a healthy balance of face-to-face interaction with friends, family fun {that you don’t blog or tweet about}, and media-free time blocks in your day.

I can’t tell you any hard and fast rules on this, because what is healthy for one person might be unhealthy for another. I can say, however, that if your brain is constantly trying to conjure up a blog post from every experience or if the only reason you ever plan a party or do an activity with your kids or bake anything is only so you can blog about it, you probably need to step back and re-evaluate.

One of the best decisions we made when I first started blogging was that I would take Sundays off from blogging/social media. I’ve found that I often have to unplug in order to recharge. Stepping away from the online noise once a week clears my head and helps me to remember what matters.

Real-Life Example #1: The Circus Post

Some of my best posts come as the result of getting offline and just living life. I’ll be in the middle of real-life and a post just comes and smacks me right between the eyes.

Such was the case with the post I wrote after we went to the circus. As soon as the whole episode happened, the analogy came to me.

I told Jesse about it as we were walking to the car and he thought it was a great idea for a blog post. So I emailed myself a few random sentences on my phone in the car on the way home and then wrote the post, Whining For a Shiny Plastic Toy, when I had time a few days later.

To be continued tomorrow…

How do you maintain a healthy balance between your online life & your offline life? I’d love to hear!

If you are struggling to find a healthy balance between your online and offline life, I highly recommend Sarah Mae’s new ebook, The Unwired Mom.

I read it recently and found that it was packed with great suggestions, practical tips, and a lot of motivation and inspiration to not become too consumed with online activities and miss the life to be lived and blessings to be had right in our own homes and communities.

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  • jennifer says:

    Live vibrantly is a great suggestion. It’s not possible to recharge your heart and soul while looking at a screen. And recharging and stepping away is where the best stuff comes from, I think.
    My day job is writing for a newspaper and when I’m really fried, the only remedy is taking a walk or going for a drive. It’s a total brain reset. Ideas that I wouldn’t have thought of while sitting at a desk just pop into my head. It’s almost like magic!

  • Victoria says:

    I agree, the best posts ideas come when you are miles away from the computer. When my husband and I went camping just the two of us a while back, I had my small camera in my back pocket the whole time. We would be out on a hike and suddenly something I saw would strike a thought, so I would take a second to take a picture and then put a few notes in my cell phone and then go back to enjoying our time together. I didn’t go out on the hikes thinking I would find something, or wanting to find something to write about, it just naturally happened.

  • Great advice! I’ve been taking Sundays off too and I agree that it really helps to refresh me and to find balance. Thanks for sharing.

  • Lisa says:

    I totally agree. When I first started, I became somewhat obsessed with it … to the point that I was burning myself out. I started taking Sundays off as well and made myself a daily online/offline schedule.

    I’m not all that much of a “techie” type of person, so I carry a small notepad and pen in my pocket at all times throughout the day. I could be loading the dishwasher and a blog post comes to mind. If I don’t stop and write it down right then and there … I’ll probably forget it later.

    Once I found the balance of it all … creativity does really seem to just flow and I feel I’m better able to bring my followers more relevant information than if I just kept trying to force it and churn things out just for the sake of filling up my blog site.

  • NickiS says:

    So glad you wrote this! I have been brainstorming topics of things I want to write about. I’m on a blogging break right now, but when I come back I will have topics and scripture and life observations I can pull from. Looking forward to hearing the other ideas you share (and maybe submitting a MSM guest post in mshe future 🙂 ) blessings!

  • Mary Ellen says:

    Living offline I think is a great, key point here. What is the point of any blog if you are living in a online bubble filled with other online bubble people without making any REAL connections.
    And that I think is the underlying message – relationships. Real relationships and real connections. Without them, the blog or online self will possibly wilt because humans are made for social interaction.

    I’m not 100% on board with not baking something only for your blog. I think it depends. I think if your blog is a hobby just like running, playing piano or doing something to “feed” yourself, then I think it is okay to indulge in a hobby. It is a way to unwind. A way to discover and a way to learn – at least that is how I see baking. But I guess if you mean that you are making something solely for your blog – not for your enjoyment or the enjoyment of others – then yes, I agree 100% in the previous statement that you shouldn’t be baking just for your blog.

    • Crystal says:

      Thanks so much for pointing that out: I realized I hadn’t conveyed what I meant to convey with that sentence and I edited it to be more clear. Basically, I was trying to convey that if the only reason you ever cook anything or plan anything is not for your family, your friends, your real-life, but only for displaying online, then you probably need to step back and re-evaluate.

      Anyway, I hope that how I edited it makes it more clear. I really appreciate you pointing that out and for your constructive thoughts there!

  • Anna Hettick says:

    I love this! I too struggle with keeping things to blog about in my arsenal but I am finding that taking a step away most of the time gives me a lot of inspiration. 🙂

    • Tanya R. says:

      I am so glad you’re writing this series! I’m planning to give my blog a huge overhaul in the next few months and am trying to plan how I’ll function once I make the changes.

      I’ve found that having “blogging days” has helped me the most. I plan to post for sure on Mondays and Wednesdays (something I’ve learned in the blogging class from Blogelina that you posted about a few weeks ago).

      My best ideas often come during or after my devotions. 🙂 I’ve made a folder in my Google Drive where I write each idea and develop it more as I have time.

      I’m also pre-writing some posts (something I really would love to do consistently).

      Thanks for the ideas! I look forward to the rest of this series!

  • Great tips. I have the opposite problem of having too many thoughts and ideas to blog. It helped when I finally evaluated what I could weed out. People come to us for our milk-free & allergy niche. They could do without the homeschooling, the couponing, and such. That was a huge stress off of me. Now I still have many posts in the pipeline, but I also found writing down a list of ideas and marking them off as I go saves me a lot of stress. Now I don’t have to worry about forgetting something that I want to later share. 🙂

  • It’s hard to express this right, but I don’t really feel any difference between my online life and offline life. I feel like my offline life is where I carry out what I’m called to do–teaching, mentoring, leading–and my online life is where I journal about the results of that. I’m completely focused on my offline life, on sowing into people. Then there’s plenty to write about as I learn from real life every day. I couldn’t write online unless I had been living the experience I’m writing about. So I never separate the two; the online stuff flows out of the real-life stuff.

    • Crystal says:

      Beautiful comment! I love this — and I think it exemplifies the fact that you’ve found a very healthy balance in your life.

      I especially love this comment: “I couldn’t write online unless I had been living the experience I’m writing about.”

        • Nicki says:

          I’m finding it difficult to balance the concept of having a personal life and a “public” life online….I guess I like to keep my personal life personal. Not sure how to mesh the two w/o sharing too much. Or risking harm to my family. That could really be a new blog post series Crystal… “How to find balance online.” 🙂

  • Shana Norris says:

    “Live vibrantly” — I love that. My husband is an artist (painter) and he reminds me often that the best way to be creative, whether it’s my writing or his painting, is to get out there and LIVE.

  • Marlin says:

    I think offline is the best ! Sometimes I don’t realize that I already spent to much time online and nothing comes out. Thanks for sharing this article !

  • I keep on coming up with ideas to have on my blog. I have so many started, but never get all the way done. I have so many idea, but don’t have so much time. I agree with you, to use your life. I use my garden, but to do that I need to be in it.

  • Carla says:

    I know this is about blogging, but I have found it helpful with other areas, too. For example, my husband is a pastor, and he can often use sermon illustrations from real life experiences, much easier than sitting down and trying to come up with one. I teach and lead a Bible study and my every day experiences are so important to my preparation. We just need to try to remember to write a small note, so we do not forget our thoughts for later in the week!

    Blessimgs to all

  • Crystal, I second the fact that taking a break from social media can recharge our batteries! For those of you haven’t tried it, you’re missing out!

    Living life is where most of my blog posts come from! It’s amazing how I’ll be find a blog post walking through my everyday life! Making notes for yourself is something that I’ve found helpful too!

    Thanks for all you do and for the encouragement that you are to us!

  • I appreciate the tips you’ve shared. I do struggle at times finding inspiration for my blogs and it’s nice to see some tips that give me a fresh look at some things!

  • I agree that inspiration comes from living your life! I get so many ideas as I hike with the family, lounge in my backyard, or explore my city.

    Wishing you a lovely day.

  • ANISEY says:

    This is the best post I’ve read on the topic so far. I’ve had such a hard time getting my blog up and running; doing it all on my own. Your post is so inspiring. Thank you!

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