Why writing is worth adding to my huge to-do list
I never utter the phrase “I’m bored”.
When I was a kid my dad used to counter that with “Oh I’ll find things for you to do” every single time I would say that. And I mean, I was a kid so it was said a fair amount. Course he meant he’d find manual labor for me to do. For an accountant, he did an awful lot of tree-fort building and concrete pouring in the backyard.
Writing helps me step back and see things differently. It helps me communicate in a world that seems so bad at communicating sometimes. And it pushes me. We all need some of those right?
Writing is unlike anything else I work on
Writing is a different experience for me. I love designing and developing because they’re opposite in many ways. I can spend 3 days and get almost nowhere on a design. Then I can be building something and in 3 days I’ve made insane progress that I can see and use right away. I wouldn’t enjoy this stuff as much in isolation.
Writing adds another perspective and it’s one that’s pulled back. When I get busy, like most people, I get consumed in what I’m doing. Especially with the development side of things. Stepping back helps me figure out what happened when things go wrong and what I can try differently next time.
Stepping back, by writing, forces me to calm down and realize that if I work on this project tomorrow, it’ll be fine. And it will be.
When I write, I’m a master of predicting how much time projects will take me. I’m much more aware of how long things will take me on the most realistic timeline.
Communication is key and writing is practice
I spent an hour writing an email one-day last week. An hour. Full hour. I don’t regret anything though. It was perfect. There was a ton of information that I had for a client and I wanted to make sure it was as clear as possible. The result was zero confusion and they knew exactly where everything stood. If you’re in the freelance or agency game, you know that doesn’t always happen.
I’m always trying to make communication a better experience with all my clients. I try to cut down on emails and make things as clear as possible.
Writing, like this, is practice. I have no big goal for these articles except that I write them. That I communicate the random thoughts I have and share my perspective. It’s all practice.
Writing is hard so I want to make it easy
It’s never going to be easy. If I naturally step up my game, write in crazier and crazier times in my life and push myself to keep going, it won’t be easy. It will be better though.
People don’t always love exercise but when you do it every day or 5 days a week? Easier to get up that one day and get it done. The hardest part of writing is starting it. Every. Single. Time.
Writing pushes me. Not how it might seem though. With so much on my plate, adding writing almost seems like it makes things crazier. Makes my schedule tighter. In reality, it’s how I force myself to step back. To calm down when things are insanely busy.
When I’m focused on sharing my thoughts as short and concise as possible, it’s hard to run 100 miles an hour. I have to slow down. I have to step back. And it’s always helpful to me to do those things.
PS: I make my lists with Flow — it’s great, so try it.
Next Week: A Push from Unsplash