Ever wished you could just write faster?
Of course, you want to create remarkable content, and that does take time. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t speed up the process without forsaking the quality.
As illustrated in this great infographic by Henneke, with the adoption of some simple habits and the right mindset, you can learn to write faster.
Of the 12 productivity hacks in the infographic, here are some of my favourites:
'Write when groggy'
Let’s face it, we all show up to work feeling less than our best from time-to-time. Perhaps it was that one glass of wine too many the night before, or maybe you just couldn’t sleep. But somehow, I’ve certainly found, it’s on these days that I am most productive.
It sounds counter-intuitive, right? But research shows that creativity requires a broad, unfocused approach. And you’re more likely to achieve that when your inhibitory brain processes are at their weakest. Essentially, you’re less critical and more confident in your ability. And you just ‘get on with it.’
So as Henneke suggests, if you’re a morning person, try writing in the evening to get that first draft done. And if you’re an evening person, why not try writing in the morning? You may surprise yourself.
'Set a timer'
Are you always distracted by the next task on your list? Or do you simply find it difficult to focus on one thing for an extended period of time? If so, setting a time slot for writing could be for you. Even if you decide to write just for 20 or 30 minutes, then have a tea break or move on to a different task, by setting a time to focus, you’ll be better able to avoid distractions and less likely to burn out.
'Get in the mood'
I don’t know about you, but I can’t write without a tidy desk, or without jotting a few ideas down on paper first. Perhaps you need a nice cup of tea to get your creative juices flowing. Or maybe running up and down the stairs a couple of times makes you feel energised and ready to tackle a new challenge. However simple, or wacky, your ritual, find one that gets you in the mood for writing and you’ll see a boost in your confidence and motivation.
'Build a bridge to tomorrow'
We’ve all fallen foul of coming back to a piece of writing after a day or two and not knowing how to get going again. The creative energy you had the first time around has depleted.
Henneke has a solution for this. She suggests that every time you take a break from a piece of writing, make sure you know how you want to continue. You could drop some notes directly into your draft to give you a clear steer when you come to pick it back up. Or write a ‘to do’ or ‘things to think about’ list to spark you into action. This idea of ‘building bridges’ will help you continue your flow.
Writing doesn’t need to be a grueling task. Nor do you need to spend hours upon hours, even days or weeks pouring over a single blog post.
I’ll certainly be using more of these productivity hacks in future. In fact, I’ve just printed off the infographic to stick on the wall as a daily reminder. I suggest you do too...
Good writing takes time. That’s true. But that doesn’t mean you can’t speed up. When you adopt the right habits and mindset, you can write surprisingly fast. In the past years, I’ve read many books about productivity and writing, and I’ve learned a few crazy and counter-intuitive tricks to massively shorten the time it takes me to write good content.