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Entries tagged 'cat:Writing'

Writing To Think

Over the last two years or so I slowly realised that blogging is something that I want to do mor often. Or writing in general. Often it was when I read other people's personal blogs that that realisation became a little push. One blog post in particular helped me realise what sort of mental processing the acttivity of writing evokes. Unfortunately I wasn't able to find it to link to it from here. Instead, here is another short blog post on the topic: "The two kinds of writing" by Herman Martinus. The principle that writing forces you to think wasn't an entirely new one to me. I just hadn't ever deemed it relevant to my life before and so never thought about it. Maybe I still haven't properly, because I never forced myself to do so for more than a minute at a time. But I'm writing about it now, so …

In a way, writing forces you to think like explaining something to somebody else forces you to understand what you want to explain first. Sometimes it is in the middle of a conversation that I realise: What I'm saying, or was about to say, is actually not a well thought through concept; but I hadn't realised this before because I never properly thought about it. But the conversation usually flows on. Even if you do take the time to think something through before you continue to talk, somebody else will likey use the pause to interject what they think at that moment. At least most people tend to do that. But when I write, I can pause however long I want, think about what I was about to say, what words are the best to describe what I know already but have never expressed, think about the relevance of my next thought and in what context it stands to what I wrote beforeand so on. I can fact-check something, search for a name, title or quote, read what I've written so far and in general take the time that I need overthink my thoughts before they are out there. That doesn't mean that I always do all of this for everything that I write. For example I often don't re-read immedietely after I wrote something, which leads to a lot of typos living permanently in my blog. I don't research what I write about for a post like this. But to put things into words and to structure thoughts itself already benefits my thinking. It takes a long time for me to write. Even a sentence like the last one can have several pauses and a tree of thoughts that may all end up being bretty much irrelevant to finishing the sentence. But I couldn't have known that for sure before thinking them through. I'm a slow writer, which is part of the reason why I don't write as much as I did when I worked less hours. For a long time though I didn't realise that writing it itself can be a recreational activity and that the very reason why I write so slowly is something that can help me in my life. Granted, with a topic like this, I'm not getting much therapeutic out of it. It's mainly throttling my perfectionist-like attitude on forming sentences that slows me down, as well as dismissing thoughts that I eventually regard as not belonging in the entry. But who knows what some of those thoughts can do in the future. Having had them once may help me make the right connection in a completely different situation some day. But when writing a diary, forcing yourself to think about things can do a lot to set you onto a track to improve your life.

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At least 100 new entries will be published here over the next year.

I'll write more regularly here from now on. I won't have more to say than in the past. My thoughts put into words won't be more interesting or important than before. Nor will I have more time or deem writing blog entries more important. The only thing that has changed is that I have decided to write a new entry more often for a year, starting now. After the year: Who knows!

The idea that I'm following with this is that of #100DaysToOffload, a project - apparently started by Kev Quirk - that encourages to make exactly the decision that I just made. I feel that it is just the right form and amount of goal-setting that I need right now. It is voluntary: I'm not forced to do it by anything other than my will to do so. It's free: Nobody tells me what to write, or how long posts must be, or about what. It's forgiving: I don't need to have a 365 or 100 day streak or stick to a strict plan or routine throughout the year. But it's challenging nonetheless: If I would like to be able to sincerely feel that I have accomplished this goal, I need to do something about it multiple times a week. I need to take it seriously and not put it off for a week or two. The routine and fixed plan that I'm glad is not predefined by the challange will have to emerge sooner or later if I don't want this to turn into a new source of constant stress in my life.

I found this idea (and indeed the necessary nudge to write this here entry), from JCProbably's note from yesterday, which kicked off their #100DaysToOffload. This is how I found that note coincidentally: I subscribe to the blog of Herman Martinus. He wrote and runs the blogging platform Bear, which is, judging from the output it produces, a really neat, clean, lightweight, no-nonsense, cool weblogging tool, in case you've never checked it out. Sometimes when I read a post of his I take the time to see what else has been written on his platform recently. Just to give myself the chance to discover something new sometimes. And there on the discovery feed of Bear was the title I’ve been living inside my head too much, which got slightly tangled in some of my neurons when I read it. That feeling always makes me interested enough to click something. And in the case of a Bear blog entry, it's always a safe click without either bate or hate. It's generally a very friendly platform.

I don't know yet what I will write about in the coming year. The character of the blog will not change because I write more. Or maybe it will, if you consider the fact that absence of character is what my blog so far amounts to. Then more regular writing may allow the blog to develop its character in the first place. Anyway; There will be shitposts, incomplete posts, lots of typos, short thoughts and unfinished

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