Five years ago I was in the middle of a dark season and for some reason that I can’t explain, I felt compelled to be vulnerable and I started a blog (this blog). Since then I’ve written 138 blogs (including this one), had over 150,000 reads and learned so much about who I am and who I want to be. In addition to the blogs, I’ve been writing a weekly email newsletter (108 editions and counting) and daily journals. The act of consistent writing has illuminated many lessons and in this blog, I’ll share 5 reasons why you should be writing too (and sharing it with the world but first thing’s first).
Writing has changed the way that I see the world and the way that I see myself.
Life is chaotic and for me, writing is one of the most effective ways to organize the disorganization that bounces around between the ears. Each morning I sit down and spill out worries, hopes, questions, intentions and so much more onto a piece of paper. Writing before interacting with the world helps me focus on who I want to be and how I can get there one action at a time; it helps me understand and control the dialogue between the ears. In simple terms, writing has helped me discover who I am and shape who I am becoming – it can do the same for you.
Tell Better Stories
The great Benjamin Franklin once said that we should either write something worth reading or do something worth writing. The art of writing has allowed me to not only tell better stories but live in a more intentional manner – allowing me to write the stories in real time rather than retrospect. I’m a firm believer that we become the stories that we tell ourselves and that we all have important stories to tell. The act of writing has allowed me to shape and reshape the narrative that I’m living and the perspective with which I see the world around me. Using writing to tell stories is a powerful and transferrable skill.
Create Good Art
There’s something beautiful about making something unique and putting good art out into the world. However, more than anything else, we have to write for the sake of writing before we can care about what the world thinks; we have to put our work on the hook. Humans crave to create and if you don’t believe me, think back to the last time that you felt immersed, engaged and energized – I would venture to guess that you were creating something – a relationship, a business, an experience (memory), etc.). We each have endless opportunities to create good art and writing is one worth exploring.
One Is Enough
If your writing can impact one person in a positive way (even you), then it’s done it’s job. The act of putting our thoughts out into the world (through writing in this context) can change the lives of those who consume them. Being vulnerable creates opportunities for impact and you never know who might need your words (maybe even future-you). When I write, I’m often speaking to the younger version of me – I like to impart lessons on who I was and reinforce them for who I’m becoming. You never know who’s reading your words and that’s potential for impact reason enough to share (for me).
Get In The Arena
When you share your work, there will always be critics but that’s not what counts (read this quote if you don’t get the reference). What matters is that we took (imperfect) action and moved just a little closer to the person that we want to become. The art of writing is subjective (to an extent) and there will always be criticisms; that’s no reason to stop. It’s been said that fortune favors the brave and sharing writing with the world, we take a brave step in the right direction. See the quote at the bottom of the blog for one final push to start sharing your thoughts with the world.
One thing is for sure, the writing that you create doesn’t have to be perfect (it won’t be) but it does have to get done. Whether it’s on a blog floating around the internet, in a journal tucked away in a desk drawer or on a napkin at a restaurant, your words matter and it’s time that you get them out of your head and into the world. Lean into the beautiful fact that you are unique – go tell your stories.
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