In many ways, writing is an incredible form of self-care. Far too many people don’t pick up a pen and paper because they feel like they aren’t “real” writers. But, there’s no right or wrong way to jot down your thoughts, ideas, or stories.
Whether you want to write professionally or for personal reasons, it’s important to understand how making regular writing part of your routine can benefit your life. It sparks creativity, stimulates your mind, and can help you become a lifelong learner.
Still not convinced? Let’s take a look at a few ways regular writing can benefit you, and how you can start to incorporate it into your routine.
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It Improves Mental Sharpness
How much time each week do you spend exercising? Do you go to the gym a few times a week, or go for a run each morning? If you’re taking the time to train your body but ignoring your mind, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
Writing is an excellent form of mental “training”. It’s been shown to keep your mind sharp while increasing your memory capacity. Research has also shown that writing can improve mental clarity by giving you the opportunity to better organize your thoughts and find ways to problem-solve.
It Builds Vocabulary
No matter your age, it’s never too late to boost your vocabulary. When you choose to write every day, you’ll start to think of new ways to express yourself. That can lead you to seek out different descriptive words, especially if you’re writing about personal experiences in your life. As the desire for more descriptive words grows, you can work on expanding your writing vocabulary by:
- Using a dictionary and thesaurus
- Keeping a word journal
- Learning a new word each day
Expanding your vocabulary can actually be a lot of fun. It’s a great way to be more descriptive with your writing, and you can even start to use the words you learn in everyday conversations as detailed descriptors of the way you’re thinking or feeling.
It Refines Your Communication
Speaking of everyday conversations, writing is a fantastic way to make you a better communicator. As you become a better, more articulate writer, those characteristics will carry over into your regular conversations. You’ll get better at stockpiling different ideas, communicating your thoughts clearly and effectively, and feeling comfortable with specific language.
Writing also expands your knowledge base so you’ll have an easier time talking about a variety of subjects. Even if there’s something you’re unfamiliar with, writing makes it easier to think on your feet and know how to improvise. You’ll be more confident in your opinions and ideas, which can make every conversation more exciting and fulfilling.
It Reduces Stress
Writing every day is a form of self-care. Whether you set aside 30 minutes in the morning to write down a stream of consciousness or take 10 minutes to journal before bed each night, it’s a wonderful way to manage your mental health and reduce stress levels.
Journaling, for example, helps you prioritize your problems and fears. It can also track your symptoms every day, so you’ll have a better idea of your triggers as well as your growth process.
Writing can serve as a great outlet, especially if you’re struggling to open up about your stress or other mental health issues. While it isn’t a replacement for a strong support system or mental health professional, it’s a good place to start.
How to Make Writing a Regular Habit
So, what can you do to write every day? How can you integrate it into your everyday life, even if you’ve never really taken the time to write much before?
It’s easier than you might think.
Your first step should be to set a goal to write each day. Some days, you might be more inspired than others. But, even if you only have five minutes or jot down a few sentences, you’ve met your goal. Other tips that can make it easier to write regularly include:
- Carrying a small journal/notebook with you
- Write (or draw) whatever feels right at any given moment
- Use your writing notebooks however you see fit
If you want to write professionally, you’ll have to be a bit more disciplined with your writing routine. However, don’t put so much pressure on yourself with deadlines and subject matter that you end up feeling burnt out and unmotivated. It’s up to you to decide how you want to write, what you want to write, and whether you’re willing to show your work to friends and family or keep it to yourself.
Whatever the case, you’ll be able to enjoy these benefits. Writing might quickly be something you look forward to each day. Even if you don’t have much experience, don’t hesitate to pick up a pen and give it a try. You might surprise yourself with everything your conscious mind wants to put on paper.