I produce a lot of writing each day, including here on Medium, on LinkedIn, and for my day job as a marketing leader. I’m constantly reading, editing, and revising.
In the past, I have become stuck on the eternal question — what to write about next? For my day job, I have to figure that out. Content is a huge part of our strategy.
But for Medium or personal writing? The urgency isn’t always there. So here are a few habits that I’ve developed to help me be consistent (even if I’m not publishing or writing each day).
1. Make a list of 10 potential writing ideas each day (or at least a few times a week)
I’ve started doing this every day, and it’s helped me immensely both in my personal and work writing (Here’s a more in-depth post on this).
But here’s a hint I didn’t go over: many of these ideas can come from other places. You are rarely ever starting from scratch!
- Read a good article on Medium? Take an idea from that.
- Read a good article in an online newspaper? Take an idea from that.
- Rereading your own articles? Take an idea from that. This one especially is a common strategy that I use. It actually helps you build out your library of content and avoid dead-ends in your content.
2. Make Consistent Progress On One of Your Ideas Each Day
Decide what you want to work on; don’t just decide that you want to work on something.
Write on one of these ideas each day. (it’s okay if you don’t finish). You may not finish the whole article in one sitting. You may not finish the next day, and you may need to skip a day.
The point is to have something. Make consistent progress each day. This will look different for each individual. I’m not a huge believer in writing each day but still make work towards it.
Using Notion, Google Docs, or even writing directly in Medium helps you see where you left off. Open your doc often and keep going.
3. Read (part of) a book every day
At the beginning of 2021, I bought a habit tracker app for my phone. One of the habits I immediately added was:
Read part of a book each day.
No, I’m not saying read one every day. But read part of one. A chapter. A few pages.
We get so busy in news cycles, that we forget to take a step back and re-evaluate bigger picture things. Books introduce me to new ideas and new stories with a longer-term view.
It’s helped settle my mind down, but also gives me new ideas to think about and write about.
Let me know how these go for you.