About a month ago I was lamenting the state of my blog with Brian Davidson. We were both wanting to write but hindered by the invisible forces of the blank page coupled with the wall of perfection. After talking for awhile we realized we needed to just simplify the process. Writing doesn't have to be perfect (because it never will be) nor does it need to be ground breaking. My favorite sites are the ones that post everyday about the topics they are interested in. So we decided to start a challenge: post every weekday. That's it. No length or topic requirements. Just write. Everyday.
I don't have time to spend 60-120 minutes to craft a blog post everyday. So I decided to set a 30 minute time limit for each post. 30 minutes from start to finish, no more. Additionally, any topic is wide open. For me, this means that most will be either self-reflective posts, technology and apps, or productivity. But I am not trying to limit myself. If I have an idea of something I want to write about then I add it to the list, sit down, and write.
What I've Learned
One of the reasons that I've kept this up (besides not losing the challenge) is that I've found several side benefits of doing this:
- Helping to avoid writer's block: I've noticed that the practice of forcing myself to write even when I don't think I have anything is getting easier each writing session. Additionally, I've been gaining confidence to overcome the blank page, which has helped my writing in more important areas of my life (academics and work)
- Writing daily: I've written more words this past month than probably any other stretch of time in my life. Writing is becoming more natural and I slowly but surely am becoming a better writer. Its only been a month but I'm encouraged.
- Learning by writing: Writing for this blog has helped me solidify my thinking on different topics. For example, I was finally able to reflect on writer's block and different other aspects of writing. Additionally, I was able to finally reflect on my weekly review that I've been doing for the past several months. Finally, its sparked conversations with friends and others about things I've posted.
At the end of the day, my writing isn't perfect nor will it ever be. The topics are somewhat eclectic and may appeal more to some but not to others. At the end of the day, I'm not trying to build a personal brand or gather a bunch of followers but become a better writer and share my thoughts on topics I'm interested in. Hopefully, you will find some that are helpful or cause you to ponder different ways of doing things as well. Writing on the web is fun but also challenging. Putting myself out there with imperfect thoughts is a challenge but I've been better for doing it.
So, thanks for reading and and happy Memorial Day!