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Lately, I’ve been realizing that all the tasks I need to accomplish share the same first action step: writing. I talk about the benefits of writing, why we don’t write more, developing your own voice, and some of the best ways to use what you’ve written.

UPDATE: There is a new version of this episode: e139 It All Starts With Writing (Again)

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Show Notes
  • 01:21 To resolve or not to resolve? (On New Year’s Resolutions)
  • It All Starts With Writing
  • 04:52 The first step of everything I needed to get done was the same: writing.
  • 07:14 The benefits of getting up early.
  • 08:49 The tying of two habits = Early Wake, Daily Write
  • 10:13 Purpose to do something because you want to and it’s a good thing—not because it’s New Year’s.

I want writing to be something that I DO, not something that needs to be done.

  • The Benefits of Writing
  • 10:49 If you’re not writing it down, it might as well be forgotten.
    • Writing helps you remember.
    • Writing shows you how far you’ve come and what you’ve learned.
    • Writing teaches others.
    • Writing influences speaking and it influences your talking.
    • Writing solidifies your own ideas in your head.
    • Writing helps you be more articulate.
    • Writing is how you find your voice.
    • Writing is how you make a name for yourself.
  • 12:32 Reticular activating system and memory retention.
  • Why Don’t We Write More?
  • 14:21 “I don’t write, because I don’t have anything to say.”
  • 15:32 The difference between someone who is a writer and someone who is not:
    • The person who’s not a writer only writes when they have something to say.
    • The writer writes to find out what they have to say.
  • 17:00 Do you think your writing’s crappy? Keep going. Let it be crappy—crappy is something improvable. You can’t improve what you haven’t written.
  • Writing to Develop Your Voice
  • 17:17 You create to discover your style. You don’t just sit around until finally one day you decide on a style and begin creating. The style—that unique voice—comes from the act and discipline of pen to paper.
  • 19:02 Instead of writing because I have something to say, I start by writing as the very first part of my day because it’s what I do.
  • 19:14 Not everything you write will be immediately usable. That’s ok.
  • 20:51 Don’t get caught up on the “deliverable” of each day’s writings.
  • Ideas for Writing
  • 22:42 Set a goal of 1,000 words a day.
  • 24:31 “What in the world would I write about for a thousand words every day?”
  • 24:55 PLENTY:
    • Process
    • Teaching
    • Curating resources
    • Telling a story
    • Chronicling growth
    • Sharing experiences
    • Covering news
    • Reviewing products or services
    • Interviewing peers or industry leaders
  • Where Do You Use What You’ve Written?
  • 26:15 Acknowledge that not everything has to be published immediately or at all.
  • 26:52 Challenge yourself to write every day, and only allow yourself to start publishing it publicly after 30 consecutive days of writing.
  • 29:23 How can you use the content you write?
  • 36:25 The content you publish and make available for free can later be used as an incentive or even for selling.
  • You Don’t Need to be Qualified to Write
  • 38:34 You may not feel like writing is for you, but you have valuable insight whether you realize it or not.
  • 40:44 There are always people further down the road than you are, but there’s also people who would learn from you.
  • 41:47 There is no barrier to entry with writing. People will decide for themselves who they deem credible. Even if you think you’re no good, you should still be putting content out there. It’s going to help you improve. You’re going to get better by doing. Your writing is going to get better by writing more. So you might as well start now and get better sooner.
  • 43:13 “But what if I later disagree with what I said? What if I end up being wrong and it’s out on the internet permanently?”
  • 44:09 Highlighting your mistakes and showing people what you’ve learned creates value. You don’t have that opportunity if you were never bold enough to put something out previously.
  • Write Like You Talk
  • 45:15 Here’s my recommendation for how to go about writing:
  • Write like you talk. Read what you wrote. Record your speech. Listen to your voice. Transcribe your words. Re-write your message. Repeat.

  • Summary
    • Early wake, daily write.
    • Benefits of writing.
    • Why we don’t write more and how to overcome it.
    • Writing to develop your voice.
    • Writing is a practice and habit and a muscle we have to exercise.
    • Not everything will be immediately usable, and that’s ok.
    • Ideas for topics to write about.
    • How to use what you’ve written.