It happens... you set aside time to write and create. Or a client cancels at the last minute. Or that rare thing of a block of time drops into your lap. You're even all set with what you're going to work on.

And you stare at the computer.

You frown at your list.

You shuffle papers on your desk.

You look at your plan.

You do nothing.

And it's so frustrating!!! Especially if it's the case where you got the very rare gift of extra time. You DREAM about having a block of time to create and write. And then you get it, and you can't seem to even press a key on the keyboard.

I'm a big proponent of following your energy, so I don't believe in forcing one's self to be creative... "Dammit! You WILL be creative." Uh, no.

But if it's not that your energy and will just aren't there, and you need a bit of a nudge, here are 10 options to cure the Non-Motivated Paralysis.

1. Do the easiest thing on your list. Sometimes you just need to get started, and that first motion will get everything else lined up and waiting to be done, too.

2. Do the hardest thing on your list. This hard thing you need to tackle could be paralyzing you... it might be the very reason you aren't doing ANYTHING - because you don't want to do THIS thing. Maybe you've heard the saying from Mark Twain, "Eat a live frog every morning, and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day."

3. Reassess your creative and writing to-do's. Maybe the list isn't valid anymore. Maybe you're not feelin' the love of some of the things on the list. It's okay to change your mind. It might have been a great idea a month ago or a day ago. And maybe it's not any longer.

4. What do you want to do? Close your eyes and think about what you actually, really, truly want to do. Maybe it's on your next-up, creative, writing list... buried among all the other ones. Or maybe it's new. Follow your energy and do the creative thing you WANT to do.

5. Set the timer for 15 minutes - and convince yourself to actually dive in for just 15 minutes. You might be motivated to do more once the timer goes off... or you'll know that you got at least 15 minutes done.

6. What inspires you? Loud music? Outdoors? Flipping through design magazines? Do it! Blare the music. Go to your favorite state park. Get out those magazines. Then see how you feel.

7. Go somewhere out of pattern for you: a cafe, the woods, your backyard, the library (they do still exist). The different atmosphere will change your energy and your mood.

8. Get out pen and paper. Or markers. Or your sketchpad. Try writing with a different implement or on a different surface. Try dry-erase markers on your mirror - storyboard or mindmap your next article that way.

9. What can you get out of this experience? (Guess how this article came about! I thought about all the ways I could motivate myself, and voila! The article was born.)

10. Just be with it. Sometimes there's no way around it. Be gentle with yourself and let be whatever needs to be.

Next time you're feeling paralyzed, pull out one of these strategies. (They work when you're plenty motivated, too!)

Author's Bio: 

Dawn Shuler, Content Creator Extraordinaire, helps entrepreneurs and authors convey their deep message into compelling words, whether it's marketing material or a book, as well as to create powerful content to increase their credibility, visibility, and profitability. Her soul purpose is to help entrepreneurs unleash their authentic selves into their businesses through their content. She created the Writing From Your Soul system to help business owners connect more powerfully, reach more people, and make a difference. Download the free, 13-step system at