Writing productivelyAre there times you need inspiration? Does the concept of rewarding yourself appeal to you? Do you find it difficult to breathe on a regular basis? And are these questions connected to writing? You bet they are… Here are three techniques to use to support productive writing: 1. Sit outside with a pad of paper and a pen, especially when there is wind. Why that works, I can’t tell you. But it does. Getting fresh air - and really breathing it in INSPIRES you and helps you be creative, to get unstuck, to get your writing done with more speed, and/or to take your writing to new places.
There is a muscular energy in sunlight corresponding to the spiritual energy of wind. ~ Annie Dillard
2. Write no matter what. You breathe no matter what. You go to the bathroom no matter what. You eat no matter what. You sleep no matter what. You grow older no matter what. Write no matter what. It’s natural. 3. Write as a reward. When I was a classroom teacher in the Dallas Independent School District and taught ‘reluctant learners’ (who were at least partly reluctant because they had all been retained at least one grade level), my goal was to raise the achievement level of each child by at least one grade level and preferably more during that academic year. I used every tool and strategy I knew how and invented many I had never tried before. Knowing how rewards and scarcity work, I would often make a limited number of, for example, math worksheets for the students. I would tell them that I had only made 15 copies or whatever the number was. I would make a big production out of the fact that not everyone would get one of these worksheets, but rather only those who finished the math activities in their math book. The first few times I tried this, my students looked at me as if I were crazy, which was possible. Then, a few kids started working busily on their assignment, proudly finished it and then presented it to me and said, ‘Do I get one of the worksheets?’ Of course they did. When I was down to a few, I’d report that and might even say, ‘I sure don’t want to have to run up to the office to make more copies so I hope some of you don’t finish.’ Did my students know I was playing them? Maybe. Maybe not. Did they work harder and more efficiently because they had a sense that there was a reward? Did math (or whatever we were studying) take on a positive hue because it was held out as a reward? You can answer for yourself. I know what I believe. And thus, if you want to reward yourself by letting yourself write when you have completed some other more onerous task, that’s not such a bad thing.

It doesn’t matter how smart you are…when you need to complete your writing (just like when you need to complete any other project or task) there are times that certain techniques are in order.


If you liked these writing tips you may be interested in the Get a Plan! Guide® to Postponing Writing Procrastination part of the Get a Plan! Guides® series designed so that so that you can accomplish your goals more smoothly, i.e., peacefully, productively, and predictably.


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