Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Becoming a Better Writer

I love to write.  Or maybe I should say, I love to look back on what I’ve written after I’ve finished it! 

I can compare it to running… I use to run a lot.  (Now a walk instead, but that’s a different blog topic.) I fought with myself daily, pushing myself out of bed to run before the rest of the day got going. The first mile or so sometimes felt torturous. But then several miles and nearly an hour later, I’d be finished with my run. I always felt great afterwards and never regretted taking the time out of my day to devote to all of those miles.

Writing is similar for me. Sometimes I have to force myself to sit down and actually write. Getting started is usually the hardest part. But once I get into it, I’m into it.  And after I’ve written something, I love reading back over it, knowing that I created something, and said something, that wasn’t there before.  LOVE that.

But like with running, it’s a battle.  Daily.  But on the days that I do it, I just feel better. If I go too many days without doing any writing, things start to feel a little off. So really, WHY is this daily writing habit so to hard for me to implement?!?

Yesterday, I was listening to a Jeff Goins podcast The Portfolio Life, and he was discussing 3 daily habits he thinks are essential for becoming a better writer.  Here they are:
1.     Capture ideas of things to write about. (Do this throughout your day, every day.)
2.     Draft 500 words a day. (Take one of those ideas and turn it into a draft.)
3.     Edit one of your drafts from a previous day.

I love that.  And yes, it sounds simple.  But not easy.

500 words is not a lot.  And neither is the time it would take to write them.  But neither is 5 minutes of daily meditation and I find doing that so challenging as well.  I’ve used apps to help me remember to meditate, and I’ve sporadically done it, but I just haven’t been able to make it a habit.  BUT, maybe that’s because I still have yet to see the benefits for me personally when it comes to mediation.

Writing though, is very important to me and I feel the benefits every time I do it. I am able to clarify the way I feel about things when I write about them. And I know to become a better writer, it’s all about carving out the time to just do it.  

So here it is.  Day 1 of this simple formula to become a better writer.  Simple.  But not easy.

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