Thursday, July 23, 2015

4 Ways to Train Your Brain to Write More

It is so easy for the new writer to become overwhelmed by writing, just as it is for the more experienced writer to become bored with writing. To overcome these and other troublesome writer conflicts, I am going to tell you what has worked best for me and what has increased my writing output.

1. Creative Visualization

There are numerous people who have credited their success to using creative visualization: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Gates, Jim Carrey, Oprah Winfrey, and more. So, if they used creative visualization to create their success, why can’t you?

There are many books available on creative visualization, including the classic Creative Visualization: Use the Power of Your Imagination to Create What You Want in Your Life by Shakti Gawain. By the way, I have two copies of this book - one in my bedroom and one in my workspace. If you don’t have a copy, get one and read it.

Learning how to visualize yourself as a prolific writer is the best way to train your brain to write more. What you see inside your mind resonates outwards and affects your daily life.

2. Read Books on Writing

Another way to train your brain to write more is to read more about writing. Spend about an hour each day reading books on writing - any kind of books on writing. I’ve taken dives into books on writing different styles of poetry, books on writing different types of fiction and nonfiction, and I always read a book or two on grammar or English composition every year. This not only puts you in the mood to write, but it can inspire you to write.

3. Be On the Lookout

Whether I am working on blog posts or a Kindle book, I am always on the lookout for more ideas. This means, when I am reading through the news or looking through other websites, I am always on the lookout for inspiration. I read through titles and ask myself how I can create a similar title based on whatever topic I am interested in writing about. For example, I found an article article on how to train your mind to increase your memory. Well, I thought, I trained my mind to be a writer, so I will write an article about what I do.

4. Live It, Don’t Dream It

Visualization and daydreaming can only take you so far. The next steps involve creating an atmosphere you can write in and get to work.

First, you need an area dedicated to writing. In my early years (nearly 2 decades ago), my writing space was on my bed. I had books stacked beside my bed and a pen and notebook. I did all my initial writing by hand and then typed it all in to my computer. I had no space designated to writing and, in truth, this did hinder me. These days, nearly all my work is done in my personal writing space. I get more work done this way.

While I am writing about work space, let me stress how important it is to keep it organized. I am naturally a cluttered person. I scatter my books everywhere and keep snips of notes here and there. When it comes to work and my research, I find that my brain is about as scattered as my workspace.

Keep your area clean. Put away the books you don’t need immediately. Get a bin or reserve a desk drawer for all your papers. Only have out what you need for the project you are working on.

Finally, just do it. Nothing makes you a better, more prolific writer than just writing. Whenever you don’t feel like writing, force yourself to do it anyway. The quickest way around writer’s anxiety, writer’s block, or lack of creativity is to just work through it.

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