How to Build Up Your Writing Momentum
“The only way to accomplish something is to pursue it” — William Ballard
I’ve written numerous articles about setting goals and how important goals really are, especially when you are just starting out. As I get older, what I’ve observed over the years is that goal-oriented people are actually very rare.
You see, what I’ve found is that a lot of people set goals, but very few people have what I call the “commitment gene” necessary to continue pursuing their goals even when it doesn’t seem like they are getting any closer.
If you’re like me I’m sure you know how easy it is to start pursuing something that you really want. You’re excited about it! You’re ready to take on the world! You feel like you can do anything!
“Set yourself on fire (with enthusiasm) and people will come from miles to watch you burn” — Quote Attributed to Rev…medium.com
However, it’s a lot harder to keep going, especially when you’re tired, not feeling well, having a bad day, or just don’t feel like doing anything.
Fortunately, there’s a way to get past these rough patches in your writing life and actually begin to build up the writing momentum that gets you closer to where you want to be, faster.
Unfortunately, the solution might not be what you want to hear.
The solution is you keep going, no matter what. You don’t stop! I know you’ve heard it before, “The only way out of something is through it,” and I am of the belief that the only way to accomplish something is to pursue it.
Look, there’s no magic button, secret formula, or pill you can take to instantly get you from setting the goal to achieving it. It just doesn’t work that way.
In fact, I once heard someone say:
“Don’t stop unless your rear end falls off. And if it does fall off, put it in a paper bag and take it with you. Stopping is what kills momentum!”
Look, every successful person you know, or every writer and author you might admire has experienced plateaus in their career at some point or another. And, believe it or not, some of their goals never got achieved.
“Don’t think or do anything without having some aim in sight; the person who journeys aimlessly will have labored in…medium.com
I wrote this article with you in mind. For those those that have set goals, and are currently pursuing them, but don’t feel like they are getting anywhere. Perhaps you may feel like you’re not moving at all. You’re working so hard but you are not able to see the fruit of your labor.
Now, that is probably, by far, the worst feeling of all. To feel like you are doing everything you can to achieve your dreams, but it is like you are just running in place, never getting anywhere. How can you build momentum when you’re not sure what that momentum even looks like?
Here are three tips that will help you maintain your forward motion:
1) Be a Professional — Do it Anyways!
I imagine there are many days when the pros don’t want to put on the uniforms and go sit in a hot dugout for yet another baseball game. However, they do it anyways.
Moreover, there are days when I don’t feel like getting up and writing articles, or researching for client projects, or pitching articles ideas to pubs, but I do it anyways. Why? Because that’s what professionals do. They do it anyways!
And you know what’s interesting? At the start, you may not feel like doing it, but once you actually are doing it, the feeling changes. In short, the cure to the “I don’t feel like doing it” disease is to just do it.
2) Write Every Day
I’ve often been surprised to find out that some novice writers, even some salty ones who should know better, very seldom write. What I mean by that is they only write for clients. They write if they have a project, but do not write every day if they are not working, or if they don’t have to.
Writing is like exercise: you need to do it daily. Just like you need to do some type of physical activity every day — even if it is just a walk around the block — you need to do a writing activity every day.
I’ve found journaling to be the most beneficial writing activity there is. You see, journaling is by far the number one tool to achieving self-awareness; and the more you discover about yourself, the more there is of you you have to share with the world.
Not writing every day is one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a writer. The more you write, the better writer you’ll become; and the faster you’ll develop the quality of writing that clients are willing to pay for.
3) Always Be Learning
Lastly, understand this: The writer who constantly learns becomes a better writer, and thus a more successful writer.
Look, I’ll be real with you. On the days when I feel like I don’t have anything to write about, I read. I read a lot. In fact, I’ve been reading three to four books a month lately, which means I’ve been note-taking and journaling like crazy (Refer to the second point above). In short, when I’m not writing I’m reading/researching/studying/learning.
Dr. John Maxwell once said, “Some of my best ideas have come from someone else’s thinking.” Now, really think about that statement for a minute.
Did you notice what I did there? I used someone else’s words to articulate a point. That’s what reading does. You’d be surprised to see how much material I’ve gathered from reading over the past month.
Study proves that creative productivity is not defined by how many hours worked, but by how well rested someone ismedium.com
You see, as you read other writer’s work your thinking begins to mix with theirs, and then new ideas begin to flow out of your finger tips and on to the screen or on to the page.
In short, if and when you get to that point where you just can’t write anymore, start reading. Pull out your notebook and start taking notes!
Building Up Writing Momentum is Not as Hard as it May Seem!
Newton’s First Law of Motion states that an object in motion tends to stay in motion, unless halted by some external force. This might be difficult to read or listen to, but the truth is: The force that halts your forward motion is more often than not, you. You are the force holding back your momentum.
When you decide to put all your energy toward staying in motion rather than fighting against it, you’ll build writing momentum like you won’t believe.
William Ballard, MBA is a highly sought after business strategist, marketing consultant, and founder of William Ballard Enterprise. He has been involved in digital marketing since 2009 and business management since 2013. William served a short stint in the military before becoming a serial entrepreneur. Since then, he has written 6 books and e-books and has no plan of slowing down.