50 Things I’ve Learned from Blogging for 50 Days

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On Friday, May 26th I decided to start blogging six days a week. Today is my 50th daily dose. I take this little milestone as a time to reflect on 50 things I’ve learned so far.

  1. Creativity is a discipline.
  2. Writing is editing thoughts, editing words, editing fears.
  3. Generating fresh ideas is easier when you’re not anxious.
  4. Old ideas, said in a fresh and clear way, feel new.
  5. Writing for yourself and those you love is better than writing for the masses.
  6. Brainstorming and fleshing out ideas should happen under a blue sky. If one cannot be found, a cloudy one will do.
  7. Doing something every day builds discipline in other areas of life as well.
  8. What connects with people is not always what you think will.
  9. When it’s difficult to come up with one idea to write about, try coming up with two instead.
  10. The hard work is to write from the heart and the creativity of one’s own mind — not in reaction to others or a desire for their affirmation.
  11. Writing is easy. Generating ideas on a consistent bases is difficult.
  12. Consistency is becoming increasingly important in a world that is becoming increasingly flakey.
  13. Wanting to do something matters not at all. Doing something matters, even if but a little.
  14. One should be ready for the novelty of any new thing to wear off. Even though this can be difficult and take some of your motivation with it, it shows that you’re approaching the summit of solidifying the habit. Getting through the difficult times where you want to quit is essential to reaching the summit. This experience will come with anything that matters.
  15. Writing each day is a way of slowing one’s experience of time.
  16. Writing each day, if for selfish ambition, is a way of wasting time.
  17. Searching for ideas is best done with the assumption that they are everywhere and multiplying at a rate that is impossible to calculate.
  18. Saying something clearly and concisely is an exercise we should all try.
  19. Writing is not just about conveying information, just as a sheet of music is not.
  20. It’s one thing to have an idea, it’s another to describe it, it’s a whole other thing to do it, and still more to live it consistently.
  21. All truth belongs to God, wherever it is, whatever it is.
  22. Anxiety is a heart that pumps so quickly that the blood moves into the brain so fast that it comes back out before it can generate a new idea.
  23. Writing is just about choosing which words will sit next to each other today to form the orchestra — whether a good orchestra or a bad one.
  24. Some people won’t like your writing, just like some people don’t like ska music.
  25. Nothing you create is for everyone. Accepting this will bring you more peace, more focus, and more purpose.
  26. Writing is just speaking on paper, a transcribing of one’s inner voice.
  27. Silencing fear and deflating the ego is the necessary job of every writer, just as they are the job of everyone who desires to live well.
  28. Most great things have been written — either before, during, or after they happened.
  29. The reminder that I’ve made my commitment to write daily somewhat public has been just enough to continue the project during early morning fatigue and rough weeks.
  30. Writing is a way of rooting oneself squarely in the present.
  31. Most things are like writing — if you don’t sit down and do them, they won’t happen.
  32. Writing is a way of slowing down and sifting through thoughts — a form of prayerful meditation.
  33. Writing often and being forced to send your work out there before you consider it perfect helps to starve your ego, your pride, and your perfectionism.
  34. Nothing is really new, just communicated in a fresh way.
  35. Ideas are like vegetables. You grow vegetables by taking care of the soil. At times you have a lot of vegetables. If you want to have some vegetables during the winter months, you will need to preserve them in an accessible place.
  36. Habits really do form if you press through the difficult, early days.
  37. Most of the work is done before you sit down to write.
  38. Keeping an eye on who reads your writing and how many people read your writing will not help your writing.
  39. Finding time to write is as simple as becoming aware of your time.
  40. Building a habit is like paving a road in the mountains. It’s difficult at first and at some point, you will become extremely tired and ready to quit. But, by choosing to press through, you will reach your destination. Then, for the future, the road will be paved and will probably only require regular maintenance and infrequent upgrades as you easily drive on it every day.
  41. It’s possible to overthink, just like it’s possible to overeat.
  42. Underthinking and undereating are things too.
  43. Doing something regularly and over a long period of time requires that you actually value the thing.
  44. Writing often is a way of getting out the mediocre stuff so that you can find the real stuff.
  45. Creating an environment that is conducive to you doing a specific thing, like writing, is essential to doing the thing.
  46. Each successful habit you build brings confidence, making the next one easier.
  47. Writing six days a week, instead of seven, is a way of reminding yourself that you are not what you do and you are not what you write.
  48. To write something you care about, you will probably have to write a lot of things you don’t care about.
  49. After 50 days of doing something, you might still care what people think about it.
  50. Surrendering the outcome is how you press on each day.

This is Dose #50 in A Daily Dose— a project where I write 6 days a week on diverse subjects like leadership, minimalism, entrepreneurship, faith, and wellness.

It’s not for everyone, but maybe it’s for you.

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