I write every day. Almost without fail, after the alarm sounds in the morning, I fix a cup of coffee, grab my Bible, and open my notebook. When this habit formed, I cannot recall, but it’s now an embedded routine. Although the beginning of this morning ritual is hazy, I do know the urge to complete it is constant.
But why? Why do I write?
I’ve given this topic consideration over the years and here are three personal reasons I write daily.
1. It helps me think.
I’m a thinker. My wife often encourages me to get out of my head, but I can’t help it. It’s my default setting. Unfortunately, like many others, I’m prone to overthink. However, writing helps me slow my thoughts, so I can evaluate them. Putting pen to paper keeps me from being overwhelmed with a flood of thoughts, because each one comes through the floodgate of my pen.
2. It documents my life.
Socrates stated, “An unexamined life is not worth living.” Daily journaling (or blogging) leaves a trace of where I’ve traveled in this life. This travel is not only physical, but mental, and spiritual too. Writing leaves breadcrumbs to show how far I’ve come or if I’ve stayed too long.
3. It maintains my creativity.
Writing is like any other discipline. It takes practice. Writing daily keeps the creative muscle from atrophy. It doesn’t get easier to climb the hill of creativity, but you do get stronger and the climb becomes more enjoyable.
It’s not an exhaustive list by any means, but these are the three major reasons I continue to write each day. What discipline do you practice each day? I’d like to hear it in the comments.
“I write when I’m inspired, and I see to it that I’m inspired at nine o’clock every morning. ”Peter De Vries
How many times have I wanted to feel inspired? Inspiration is allusive and fickle. Instead of waiting for it to come, it’s best to plop into my writing chair and put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard). I may wrestle to find the words, but if I am persistent, they’ll come. They may come kicking and screaming, but they’ll come.
I’ve learned, like Peter De Vries, many times inspiration follows perspiration. It’s great when the feeling of inspiration hits and you hammer out hundreds, if not thousands, of words. However, for me, I’ve learned it’s rare. And I know I’m not alone. If you want to write, the only way is to show up! Whether you feel like it doesn’t matter.
Do you struggle to show up? How do you overcome the temptation to procrastinate? I’d like to hear your solutions in the comments.
I’m sweating as I type this. Hopefully, the small air conditioning unit will dispel this South Georgia heat from my writing nook in my wife’s photography studio. It’s hot. We’ve hit triple digits over the past week on multiple occasions. I think I know how candles feel when they melt.
Why am I here sweating? Well, the story goes like this.
A few minutes ago, I poured a cup of coffee, grabbed my laptop, and headed to my bedroom. (Did I mention it was air-conditioned?) Glancing at the clock, it was a few minutes before 10 p.m. Two hours to keep the streak alive. That’s plenty of time to write and post something on my blog.
I settled into the comfy chair in the corner to write. (I’m not sure, but did I mention the temperature was nice there?) I turned on my laptop and then it happened. My computer began an update. Why?!? It was overdue, but I didn’t have time for it! I needed to post, so I rushed to my desktop in the studio. (Did I mention the air was not on and it’s an enormous space to cool down?)
Here I am losing massive amounts of fluids, so I can say I posted today. It may seem silly to some, but I made a commitment last week to post daily. I’ve struggled with consistency with my writing over the years and there is only one remedy. Write. At the moment, it is sweat and write. But I think it’s worth it to keep the streak alive.
Have you ever struggled with consistency in an area? What were you willing to endure to push forward? Let me know in the comments section.