Tapping Into the Power of Writing

Writing is pure, blissful agony.

Writing is all around us. As new grads and students we’re ensnared by perfectionism. To write is to express oneself and communicate. That’s why writing is such an invaluable skill in any environment. Whether you’re firing e-mails at 108 words per minute or crafting resumes and cover letters with love, you’ll need to communicate through writing. Let’s level up those communication powers to enhance both our personal and professional lives through writing.

Start Small, Start Now

“Sucking at something is the first step to being sorta good at something.”
– Jake the Dog

My trip down the writing rabbit hole was a complete accident. A friend popped by one day and blurted “NaNoWriMo!”

Nano what? Every November, a bunch of aspiring hopefuls around the world commit to writing a 50,000 word novel during National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). The novel doesn’t have to be mind-shattering. Hit 50,000 words, that’s it. Writing was an exercise in commitment. It started off as a game to overcome self-doubt and the fear of not expressing yourself because you craved perfection.

Whipping together 1,667 words every day for 30 days straight was eye opening. Some days were easy, others terrible. The benefits of writing every single day included creative discipline and a dampening of communication fear. The writing wasn’t always easier, but large word counts no longer terrified me. Writing in other contexts felt easier too. I got in the habit of expressing myself rain or shine. Essays and other forms of writing became far less daunting as a result.

Writing Flexes Your Communication Muscles

“Good writing is clear thinking made visible.”
— Bill Wheeler

Writing develops confidence. No matter what your area of study, career or profession, you’re going to need to write. Writing improves gradually but there’s always light at the end of the tunnel. Expressing yourself is invaluable no matter where you turn. Writing is simply the process of training your creative, communication muscles. The more you write, the stronger you’ll be at writing and the easier writing becomes.

Be it a mere page or sentence, a constant writing practice levels up your communication chops and you’ll communicate more effectively no matter what your role. As with any skill, there are always ways to improve. There’s nothing mystical or magical about writing well. Improving boils down to consistent practice. It’s easier to write better and clearer the more reps you put into writing. Silence that inner critic and overcome your fear of text and communication, one word at a time.

Habits Are the Secret Sauce to Great Writing

“If I waited for perfection I would never write a word.”
— Margaret Atwood

Tapping into the power of writing is super simple. Just WRITE. Artists make art, bakers bake bread, so if you want to be a better writer, you better get writing. There are no real tips and tricks other than to quit over thinking and doubting that you can improve. People aren’t born to be great or terrible writers. Writing as a skill is accessible to anybody who wants to communicate better.

Write a bit every day.

Building a habit of writing is far more important than wondering if the writing is any good. Write as fast as the gingerbread man runs. You can always edit later. The biggest obstacle to improving your writing is the fear preventing you from starting. Writing is free, so write even if it’s a paragraph a day. Start writing — you’ll be surprised at how this consistent habit improves any area of your life that requires communication, creativity or expression. Writing enhances every area of your life.

Writing is a process. No gimmicks, no mystical explanations. The more you write, the easier it becomes to see improvement and gain confidence in your writing. Relax. It’s going to be okay. Keep those communication muscles strong and firing. You’ll find that your thoughts become clearer and you’ll gain confidence expressing your opinions, thoughts and ideas.

No matter how you spin it, the benefits of writing are powerful and enormous. So get to it!