Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Excuses for not writing

I decided to write up some of the excuses I have heard from people about why they don't write.
  • I have too much to do.
  • I don't have time to sit and do it
  • I have nothing to write about
  • No one will want to reach what I write
  • I'm not good enough at it
  • My ideas are silly
  • Something else always gets in the way
  • I have too many ideas and can't focus on one

These are some of the reasons/excuses I have heard about why someone isn't writing and they keep saying that they want to be a writer. Maybe they aren't going to be the best writer or the fastest writer but at least they will get some enjoyment out of the actual process of sitting down and putting words to paper. I think the best reason/excuse I heard was “I can't write anything on a computer file because if I am writing on there it has to be perfect otherwise it isn't good enough and I spend way too much time editing what I wrote. I can only do my writing on paper and it takes forever to get a thought down.” If this person saw some of my writing on my journals they would wonder what I was thinking but at least I get the thoughts down quickly and then work on making them sound better.

I for one did use a lot of those excuses earlier and then I decided that I just had to take the time to sit down and try to write. I have to admit that not everything I write is ever seen by any one other than myself but at least I sit down and write.

One of the biggest things that I did for myself was to set up a spreadsheet to track my word count each day for my journal and blog writing that I do. This spreadsheet has been going on since 2013 and I track each day and if I wrote and how many words actually made it to paper/computer document. Of course I have seen that at the beginning I missed a lot of days because I just couldn't find the time to sit and write. For me making myself accountable for sitting and actually getting a few words down onto paper each day helped me in a number of ways. I am no longer afraid of that blank slate any longer because I know that just being able to get a few words done normally starts the process for the rest of my writing. The practice of writing has made it so much easier to write when I need to write something for work or my blogs. This spreadsheet also shows me how many days in a row I have been able to write and that is also motivating for me. As of this morning I have reached 449 consecutive days of writing. Maybe not always a lot of words but at least I have written something.

I know that I used a lot of excuses when I started writing and the biggest one was I wasn't good enough. Maybe I am not the faster writer or the greatest writer but at least I enjoy what I am going. Yes, when you start writing you are going to come up with a million excuses why you aren't writing but you have to tell yourself that these are just excuses and sit down and try. One of the first exercises is to write out all your different excuses and then see how you can know them off that list.

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