Do you keep a journal, or regularly write a few verses or maybe even an entire short story? In that case, you’ve probably already noticed the advantages of a daily writing ritual. Writing down a few lines every day can become a mindful process that keeps you grounded, provides you with more insight and awareness and stimulates your creative brain.
Use writing to create a more mindful lifestyle
By writing down your thoughts, you spend more time thinking about them, which can have many positive effects. Your thoughts no longer pass by mindlessly, without you getting a handle on them. By paying attention to your thoughts and becoming more aware of the dynamics of your mind, you allow more clarity and valuable insights to arise.
Write a to-care list
Start your morning brightly and cheerfully by incorporating a writing ritual into your morning meditation. We’ve all written a to-do list, but what about a to-care list? This will help you pay extra attention to your intentions for that day. What would you like to do today? What is important to you? What gives your day added value? What are the choices you want to make? If you write these things down in the morning, you make sure your brain is awake and that you’re ready to seize the day. Need some inspiration? This video can help you set daily intentions.
Writing can also help you feel more relaxed and peaceful. That's why you can use your writing ritual to create a sense of calmness, which is great when you’re about to head off to bed. When writing down your thoughts, you’ll get a sense of what your mind has been up to all day. Maybe you’ll discover that you've been thinking about the same thing for a while, without finding a helpful solution. By writing out what you actually think, you’re also paying more attention to how you actually relate to your own thoughts. You may learn that you could be a bit nicer towards yourself. Consider a writing exercise in which you investigate how you can turn your negative thoughts into positive thoughts. Or start your writing ritual with a contemplation exercise, in which you reflect on beautiful moments that happened during your day. What was it that made you happy, what were you grateful for, or proud of? You could also think of a sentence from a book or a line from a poem you love. After your contemplation exercise, write them all down in your notebook and you’ll fall asleep with a big smile on your face.
Boost your creativity
Author James Altucher once said: “Ideas are the currency of life.” His advice? To come up with 10 ideas every day. An idea for a short story, an idea for a character or the first line of a poem (no need for it to rhyme with anything). Don't hold yourself back, get those ideas out and jot them down. Exercise that idea muscle of yours. And if you’re struggling to come up with 10 ideas, come up with 20 ideas, says Altucher. He’s not even joking. Here’s the thing: if you don't get to 10 ideas, perfectionism is probably getting the better of you. But your 10 ideas don't have to be great! In fact, it's impossible to produce 10 amazing concepts in one go without any previous exercise. So, it’s best to just give yourself a break: then you’ll realise how much easier it is when you stop having all these opinions about your own thoughts. That’s the moment the ideas will pop into your head, ready to be written down. The more ideas you collect, the higher the chance of an exciting storyline arising from one of those ideas. "Practice makes permanent," according to Altucher. The more often you start writing down your ideas, the stronger your idea muscle becomes, which may come in handy if you have to come up with an idea at lightning speed someday.
Write a forest
Do you like the idea of a daily writing ritual, but are you also an eco-savvy do-gooder who wonders where all that paper is supposed to come from? In that case, we have some very good news. Not only are notebooks made from recycled paper becoming more and more common, but you can even create extra trees while writing! The app Forest not only lets virtual trees grow in the time you spend without opening other (distracting) apps, the world also receives a few real trees thanks to your mindful writing minutes.
Now that you know how beneficial a daily writing ritual can be and have a few ideas to get you started, it’s down to you. Incorporate mindful writing into your routine and start feeling more grounded, aware and creative today.