How to Start a Daily Writing Habit

I’ve thought about how nice it would be to write every day on many occasions. I’m apt to make excuse after excuse for why it’s hard or a struggle or even impossible. The truth is, none of those things are true. We are capable of anything we set our minds to. So, in the interest of inspiring myself to write more frequently, I’ve decided to create an article centered on how to start a daily writing habit!

Suggestion #1: Ask Yourself What It Is You Like to Write About

Finding topics to write about is often my biggest struggle. I’ll carve time out to journal, either on paper or on my computer, and then my mind is just blank. Surely my life isn’t that boring. Surely there must be something I can talk about. But without structure I’m a ship adrift at sea, staring mindlessly into the depths of my computer screen.

So, my first tip is to start compiling a list of things you like to write about. Here’s the good news: this list can truly include ANYTHING! There are many people sharing many ideas about many things on the Internet today. There are also many authors making plenty of money writing about a vast array of topics. The key here is that you ACTUALLY like whatever it is that you’re writing about.

From experience, motivation is infinitely more difficult to come by when you’re uninspired by the topic. Like many things in life, it’s much easier to devote time to writing if you enjoy what it is you’re writing about. Another bit of good news about this: if you focus on writing about topics you’re passionate about, you’re more likely to write more. And the more you write the better writer you become. And the better writer you become, the more likely you are to get paid to write about things you love (if that’s your goal of course!).

Suggestion #2: Ask Why It Is You Want to Start a Daily Writing Habit

This suggestion could certainly come before the first, but it’s important nonetheless. Understanding why you want to write is just as critical as understanding what you want to write about. So, what is your goal for starting a daily writing habit?

Are you an aspiring young adult fiction author? Do you want to become a better writer so that you can get paid to write online and afford to leave a job you currently don’t enjoy? Would you simply find benefits in taking time out of every single day and reflect upon your current situation and dream for the future?

Whatever your motivation may be, you need to understand it. This will help you hold yourself accountable to this daily habit because there will undoubtedly be days when you’ll find it much easier to turn away from the journal and into a television or computer screen. But keeping your “eyes on the prize” and staying focused on your big picture goals will increase your motivation immensely!

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Suggestion #3: Schedule!

Many of us live 99% of our lives on a schedule. Work here, yoga there, beers with friends later. Whatever your schedule is, it can often be hard to incorporate new things. Many studies have shown that it takes almost three weeks for us to make new habits into a routine. A daily writing habit is no exception.

While writing can be extremely therapeutic and beneficial in many ways, I know that I struggled to schedule my daily writing habit for a number of years. I thought, “Well, you can simply never predict when inspiration will strike.” And I used that as an excuse NOT to write.

But the more I read about and learn about the lives of many of history’s most famous authors, I find that they all, to their own degrees, wrote voraciously. They wrote and wrote and wrote. And probably 90% of what they wrote was never shared or published. But it was the act of creating that 90% that also led to the other 10% that many of us read today, and which will continue to inspire many generations to come.

Suggestion #4: Forgive Yourself for ‘Off Days’

I believe that my #1 detriment to myself is a lack of forgiveness for those days that I get sidetracked or distracted and, therefore, I don’t write. Then, sometimes I sit down and write but it comes from a place of disgust and unhappiness with myself. And honestly, there are probably very few of you out there who want to read content that comes from that place.

We are all human. We will set goals for ourselves and make schedules for ourselves and create plans for our future. And this is very natural. This is what we have done for centuries and what we will continue to do. But as a fellow creator, I urge you to exercise forgiveness, both for yourself and for those around you.

Because, at least the way I see it, there really is no rush. You will get there eventually. I will get there eventually. We will all get there eventually. We are all experiencing our own journey back home. Always remember that we’re in it together!

Parting Thoughts

I continue to struggle with my daily writing habit all the time. I am a person who also needs to spend a significant amount of time out of doors, so I often lack the motivation to spend time on my computer. But I do find that, when I am able to create something every day, even if that something is relatively minuscule or I think it to be pretty trivial, I often feel so much more satisfied at the end of my day.

If you liked what you read, didn’t like what you read, or have questions about what you read, I’d love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below if you are inspired, perplexed, saddened, or angered by any of the ideas presented above. I welcome any and all comments and will do my best to respond in a timely fashion.

I’d also encourage you to share this review with others if you found it particularly insightful or helpful. Be sure to tag @ballisterwriting on Facebook or Instagram if you do! The point of social media, after all, is to be SOCIAL! I don’t need followers or likes, but I’d like to contribute to a real conversation about how we continue to improve as a society and as individuals.

Thanks for your support!

Tucker Ballister

tucker@ballisterwriting.com

 

 

 

 

2 comments

  1. R.J. says:

    Hey Tucker, awesome post. You know, I’ve been a writer my whole life and I’ve wanted to break into writing professionally but I never got the kind of notice that most people would get from professional magazines and whatever have you.
    Also, I like how you simplified how easy it is to get started writing because there are way too many people complicating it then in turn say that “writing is too hard” I’ve always loved putting my thoughts on paper, so I’m happy to see a post like this because it points out that writing isn’t as bad as people think. Good job!

    • Tucker says:

      Hey R.J!

      Thanks for the comment! I saw this quote the other day, that said something to the effect of, “if you write, you’re a writer.” But I, for one, put so much pressure on myself for a long time in regards to what being a “writer” really meant. Sometimes I would tell people I was making money online through freelance writing and just saying that made me feel like a fraud. But the beauty of the Internet today is that we can write and publish. And by sharing we can connect with people that we may otherwise never had a chance to connect with! 

      I wish you the best of luck in your future writing endeavors, and I hope you send me a link or two to some of your material! 

      Cheers!

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