The physical act of writing can be hard. There’s no question about it – sitting down at your desk, and focusing on the task at hand while you tap away at your keyboard can be genuinely difficult and daunting, no matter whether you’re penning the next great novel or an narrative essay for your college work. The world we live in right now is so filled with distractions, with opportunities for procrastination, and a whole host of other frustrations, that writer’s block is an everyday reality for millions across the globe, and finishing what we can be what seems an insurmountable challenge. Thankfully there are many resources available to help you boost your cognitive ability.
If you’ve ever struggled to get through a text that needs to be typed, you’re far from alone. You’ll also be pleased to hear that there are plenty of fantastic techniques, tips, and neuro hacks just waiting to be discovered, each of which has the potential to unleash your creativity and focus and help you get your writing tasks done with ease. We’ve put together what we feel are the seven most effective neurohack techniques for unleashing your writing potential, all of which can be easily implemented whenever you need a boost of creative energy. Check them out below!
Trust us: meditation isn’t just for Buddhist monks or hipster moms. It’s something which people have been doing for thousands of years, and it’s the perfect way to achieve a sense of inner calm, quieten down the noise and buzzing in your mind, and clear a silent, personal space in which you can reset your focus and get ready to produce something beautiful.
There are endless different meditation techniques out there you can try, and they range from simple breathing exercises to visualization methods, and from listening to specially made binaural music tracks to self-hypnosis. You’ll most likely have to explore a few of them before you find one which works best for you, but whichever you end up settling on, we do not doubt that you’ll quickly see the benefits that meditation brings. You’ll be able to sit down at your writing desk feeling refreshed, re-energized and newly confident in your thoughts, and before long, those words will be flowing from your fingertips and onto the page.
Surround Yourself With Blue
This neurohack is one which is gaining plenty of popularity right now with those seeking to boost their creativity, especially those looking to improve their writing skills. Despite recently being the subject of plenty of attention, it’s a technique which has been around for quite some time, and which had plenty of famous adherents (such as Picasso, who went through a well-known ‘blue period’ which was typified by a ferocious level of creative power!).
Blue is the color of inner peace, calm, and serenity. However, it’s also the color of inspiration and innovation – it’s no coincidence that we say ideas strike us ‘out of the blue.’ Surrounding yourself with the color blue, whether that’s blue furniture, artwork, clothes, or the sea and sky, is a fantastic way to invite inspiration into your personal space, and prepare your mind for some top-notch writing time.
Feel Free to Daydream
All great writers have one thing in common: they spend a whole lot of time daydreaming. Being alone with your thoughts, doing nothing else, in particular, is a vital aspect of the creative process. If you want to formulate your ideas more clearly, and flesh out narratives, characters, theories, or concepts, get yourself a comfortable place to lie down, and daydream to your heart’s content. Seriously – it works!
Make Sure You’re Getting Enough Sleep
This is a pretty essential neurohack for more or less everybody, but for those who want to unleash their writing potential, it’s vital. Getting adequate sleep (and yes, we’re talking a full 8 hours per night) is the best way to ensure that you’re able to stay focused once you’re sat down at your desk or with your laptop. Your eyes will feel less heavy and strained, your ideas will come thick and fast, and your ability to concentrate and stay committed to text will vastly improve.
Write Thorough Outlines
There’s a common misconception about writers that they sit down, flex their fingers, and then type away without knowing where their writing is taking them. While this is probably true for an exceptional minority of authors, journalists, and academics (we’ve all heard of the feverish way in which Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, or Hesse wrote Demian, etc in just a couple of weeks), the vast majority of us cannot and should not approach our writing in this way.
Producing outlines is a precious way of ending up with quality writing. Set out, step-by-step, what you’d like to write and where you’d want your book to go, and flesh out each bullet point or section of your outline as you go along. Before long, a bare skeleton of text will be considerably meatier, and from there, it should be easy to produce a thorough piece of work which reads beautifully and concisely.
Use Positive Affirmations
Our minds listen to the words we say. Using positive affirmations is all about telling yourself what you want to achieve, and then making sure you listen to what you’re saying, and then carry out your instructions. Many creative writers and those looking to boost their productivity will start each day by stating (out loud) their daily goals, then repeating them at critical points throughout the day. Give it a try, and be sure to vocalize what you want and how you’ll reach your objectives… even if (and especially if) you’re the only one listening.
Reward Small Achievements
As we mentioned right at the start of this blog, writing can be tough work. Make sure you’re rewarding yourself as you hit certain milestones along the way. Fancy a coffee break? Just make it to the end of that paragraph, and then treat yourself to a trip to your local cafe. Want to kick back for a while and chat with a friend? Turn that into a reward for finishing writing up your citations. By establishing milestones and ticking them off as you go, you’ll be making positive associations between your achievements and the treats you grant yourself, which will help keep you motivated, creative, and willing to do more.
There you have it – seven easy tricks to improve your writing skills, and which have a powerful potential to turn you into the writer you know you can be. Give them a try, and see the results for yourself!