My Journey to Developing a Good Writing Habit

Saturday, October 12, 2019
About a month ago, I found someone's blog post raving about Google calendar and how much it helps their life. I can't say I am of the same mind frame, although I do appreciate the tool on occasion. Intrigued, though, I went on a journey to the Google Calendar app on my phone and found an interesting area that lets you schedule something you want to be built into a habit. I scheduled a daily writing activity reminder (around 5:30 pm or so every day) so I would be nudged to write. I kept the reminder on my phone for about a month and didn't write a single bit. Not one word.

Add onto that, around the same time, I signed up to receive reminders from a website that would nudge me about writing that day and give me encouragement. Turns out, that didn't help me either.

Have you ever felt like you were helping yourself only it was making things worse? As much as I thought the extra reminders would help, they did the opposite. Around the beginning of October, I deleted the reminders and unsubscribed to the website. I've been writing fairly regularly since then.

In addition to removing those pesky reminders, I also did one huge thing. I removed the Twitter app off my phone. And Instagram. But Twitter is the bigger deal. As much as I enjoy the #WritingCommunity on Twitter and enjoy the platform in general, it wasn't helping me at all. The reminders, the notifications, the pull towards looking at bad news, and the endless scroll basically plummetted my energy level. Without me even realizing!

My writing habit has improved lately and I'm excited to keep going forward. If you are trying to unlock the secret to developing a good writing habit, consider what could be draining your energy, hurting your attempts, or distracting you too much. I never thought the little notification to write would do the opposite for me. I also never thought I'd uninstall my social media apps and see the benefits of doing so.

Sometimes it's the small things that take away from our energy level (which adds up to being the big things). Paying attention to stimuli can be a huge factor in identifying what isn't helping you stay motivated. So if you are trying to figure out how to work in your writing habit into your life, keep trying, keep tweaking, and keep writing.


barebones said...

re: My Journey to Developing a Good Writing Habit

Habits! Think of all the inventions that are offered in order to break habits. Think of all the inventions that are offered to form habits. Some habits are necessary to conform. Other habits force a behavior that not necessarily beneficial. Habits just happen!

Inspiration is not sourced by habit. It is a product of a person's chemistry and experience and the ability to associate.

An excellent source for thought is TED Talks on the internet. Sometimes it's the topic, sometimes it's something incidental to the subject, but it surely broadens a mental library from which to be inspired.

Good Luck,

PS Last line of third paragraph from end.
"Without me even realizing!"
Grammar rule: Nouns and pronouns preceding gerunds must be genitive.

Sioux Roslawski said...

Nicole--I can't blame the lure of social for my lack of writing progress. However, I'm glad that the plugs you pulled have resulted in your writing block getting unplugged.

Nicole Pyles said...

@Sioux - thanks! I just hope it continues this way

Bev Rearick said...

I have to agree with you 100%. I found myself focusing on things such as social media and not really writing things in the hopes that it would increase my writing, but in the end, it just took away from it. Instead my main focus is working on my writing. The other stuff isn't as important.

Nicole Pyles said...

@Bev - So true! So many things can become distractions I have realized. I like when I can spot them and cut down!

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