Being an author can be one of the most rewarding experiences you can ever have. You get to express your true self, your ideas, earn income and also help people in the process. I’ve been writing in journals, notepads, scraps of paper, Evernote, digital notepad, tablets and more. I just can’t stop writing and it’s a gift I have. It was only just recently, after going through a near death experience I finally learnt that I’ve been given the gift of writing.
I’m certainly not the best writer in the world and there are tons of people out there who are just amazing writers, however it’s a craft that I’m willing to work on for the rest of my life. I’m also a vicarious reader where I love reading articles, books and studying things. Those two traits of mine have been with me for as early as I can remember, the gift of learning and writing.
“I can’t write”
Just recently I met someone who I consider a great mentor in the world of management. He’s been managing people for a very long time, however he confessed that he’s just not a good writer. He struggles writing emails and putting together good sentence structure (even though that’s not really that important). This really amazed me for writing has always been my passion and I think it’s really easy to grasp. Anyway, not trying to boast but I personally believe anyone can become a better writer if they really work at it.
There is no set style in writing and no proper way of doing it. If you’re reading my articles, you’ll find that I jump back and forth. There are days when I just can’t be stuffed and you can tell with my writing. You can also see when I’m pumping really high quality content because I hit one of those high energy clarity days where everything just flows.
So you can see that being a writer does have it’s great days and bad days. It’s never perfect and you’re never pumping out great content every single day. It’s never the case.
The best habit you can ever cultivate is writing every day
One of the best habits I’ve ever cultivated in my writing career is to simply write every single day. That’s it. Every day, no matter what time it is, I’m writing something down on paper. It’s usually my thoughts and ideas but I’ve watched this habit really develop over time. I’m finding it a lot easier to express my ideas and thoughts with clarity and whenever I’m reading over what I’m writing, I’m pretty happy with it.
One of the biggest challenges with writing every day is “writers block”. Most people say that they can’t write every day because of “writers block”. They say “I don’t know what to write” or “I can’t think of anything”. Well that is usually the case for me too whenever I’m trying to write something everyday. I would normally sit down and think “ok what am I going to write today and publish on my blog?” There would normally be a few seconds of blankness in my mind then all of a sudden, I would come up with an idea and I just go with it.
Tonight, after I finished my workout at 10pm, I sat down and thought to myself “what am I going to write tonight?” and the thought of “how to write every day” came into mind and here we are. I’ve learnt to trust my instincts and that I’ll come up with the ideas every single day.
Here are some tips that will help you write every single day. I call it the 6 habits of highly effective writers.
Habit 1. Just write something.
This one is a biggie like Notorious BIG. Just write something down. Don’t worry about how many words, whether it will be good or great or whatever, just write the damn thing down and let it flow. The act of writing every single day is more important than sitting down and writing huge chunks in one go. I can certainly say that you will see a massive difference in your writing and flow of work if you’re writing every single day. When you first start off, it’s really tricky and you got a lot of crap in your head. But once you write out all that crap, you have a clear mind and you’re writing awesome stuff that can also be crappy too (based on what you think).
Habit 2. Start with the title.
If you really stuck on what to write, just start writing a title. Write down the topic “how to” and then add your thoughts on the remaining sentence. This really helps get the ball rolling and then you start to express your thoughts on that particular topic.
Habit 3. Don’t worry if it’s crap.
This one is actually really effective in writing every day. I find that sometimes if I’m writing something down, I think to myself whether I’m producing great work or crap work. But when I read it over again, it sounds pretty good. So while you’re writing down something, in your mind you may think it’s crap but when you’re reading it, it’s actually pretty good.
Let’s talk about the concept of crap. If you’ve been writing for a while, you may have elevated to a certain point of quality. You’re not there yet but what you think is crap could also be the best thing since sliced bread to someone else. For example, do you remember that song “Sweet Child of Mine” by Guns and Roses? Well that song wasn’t the best song they ever produced in their mind and they really thought it was crap because it’s sounds so gimmicky. However it went on to sell millions of copies and was a worldwide phenomenon.
The lesson here is this. As an artist, you’re focused on producing great work and have your high standards. When you measure against your high standards, what you perceive is crap work could be the best thing ever to someone else. Also, what you perceive is great work, could be crap to others.
So remember that crap is all perception so don’t let that limiting belief stop you from writing every single damn crappy day.
Habit 4. Just keep writing.
Whenever you’re writing something, just keep doing it. Don’t stop and just let the words flow onto paper. You can always edit the content later on and make your changes but what’s most important during this phase is to just keep writing and let it flow.
Habit 5. Let go.
It’s impossible to write something down when you have so much crap in your head. You have to let it all go and just write on paper. Let go of whether your work with be criticised or hated by others. Let go of whether what you’re writing is worthy of attention. Let it all go and just write. Only then you’ll be able to write with your utter most authentic form and connect with your readers in so many ways you can’t imagine. Just let it go, let it go.
Habit 6. Write after a workout.
This one is really interesting. Just recently I’ve changed my schedule from writing first and exercising second. I’ve changed it so now I exercise first and right after I finish, I sit down on my laptop and begin writing while I’m cooling off. For some weird reason, this has been truly effective in writing down so much great content. I’m finding myself being so creative with my words and having the energy to summon my wordsmith in my mind. This article is a direct result of this. Maybe it’s the energy you get from working out or the blood pumping through your brain or maybe it’s maybelline, who knows but it works. Try writing right after a good workout session and you’ll be amazed with your genius abilities.
Writing is an art and also a gift to the world. The act of writing your words on paper can really change someone’s life. You should never forget that. Have you ever read a quote somewhere that had such a powerful impact on your life? All it takes is just a few words to change someone’s life. The words “I love you” could mean you’ll end up spending the rest of your life living with someone for many years with a dog, house and white picket fence. The words “I love you” could also mean you’ll get slapped in the face too.
Words are so powerful and you can change the world with it. So why hold back? Every day is an opportunity to share something with the world and the only way in which you can do this is to write every single day.
Stay Strong and Be Relentless.