Article Writing: How you learn more from yourself than from reading a book part 1/2
In my current role as Communication Lead in our Tech Practice, I work on communication topics inside and outside of our company. One way to present ourselves to the outside world is to write about what moves us. At the same time, I have discovered in myself, and also others reflected me, that writing itself has several other benefits. It can be used to educate yourself in a much more active way by approaching, exploring, and formulating a topic. And yes we can read books to get inspired by topics or acquire knowledge. But nothing beats hands-on learning by doing. That’s why I want to motivate you to write yourself and enjoy the benefits of writing about something new just like I do.
In which phases of writing do you benefit?
Before we dive into the benefits, I want to tell you about the different phases of writing.
- Inspiration: Everything starts with the idea to write something. Because you are dealing with the topic, it occupies you or you want to dedicate yourself to it. Use this inspiring moment, take the pen and formulate your first idea.
- Brainstorm: The first ideas for an article come from this impulse. Think about possible topics and brainstorm with others interested in the subject. The first thing is to develop a rough idea. The important thing is that it interests you and has relevance to others.
- Research: Once you have found a topic. The point is to learn from as many influential and enriching sources as possible. The Key is that you build up more knowledge about it. Ask yourself several questions about your topic. Then compile them as a source of inspiration for your article.
- Outline: The next step is to create structure. Find a first form in which you want to lead the reader through your article. What story do you want to tell? What reaction do you want to achieve?
- Draft: Then specify, deepen and plan the individual sections step by step. Now the actual writing process begins, where you should let your thoughts run free.
- Refine: Once you’ve written your article, it’s time to refine and optimize it. Get feedback from colleagues, friends, or other experienced writers. With these new impressions, you give it the final touch.
- Publish: It’s time to publish your article on your chosen forum.
- Reactions: After the release begins a very exciting part. You may now receive feedback on your formulated thoughts and enjoy them. Or even enter into a discussion with readers.
This is a rough overview of the writing process and you can enjoy the benefits of writing at all these stages. In the next section, we’ll take a closer look at the benefits
MAIN BENEFITS OF WRITING
UNDERSTAND YOUR ENVIRONMENT AND THE SUBJECT
Writing will help you engage with the topic you have mastered or want to learn about. As you research, you discover new influences and information. You gain valuable new knowledge about the subject. By reading articles written by others, you discover exciting people. They deal with the same topic and you learn their perspective on it. Furthermore, you detect exciting sources that support or refute your thesis. This broadens your horizons and supports your thesis with facts
More structured report
After you have studied a topic in depth. By putting your thoughts in writing, you can express them in a better and more structured way. You build deep knowledge about your topic, because you think it through, not read or hear about it. This way you can express your acquired knowledge fluently and freely.
Form an opinion
Dealing with a subject that is new to you, your opinion about it is probably not yet clear and well-formed. While working on your article and researching, you discover new perspectives on the topic. In the process, you form a sharper opinion. Even your original opinion on the subject can change.
It makes you happy
Writing fills the mind with new knowledge and impressions. This is a very satisfying process. This success releases feelings of happiness. When you have published your article, you have achieved something special. A moment that everyone can enjoy.
Writing down is better than rethinking it again and again
Writing things down helps me in any case. While you write things down, you let your thoughts run free and start sorting them. In the written word you can sort and reorganize them afterward. Furthermore, you can retrieve them at a later time. Without having to struggle to remember them.
Others can take part and benefit from it
By writing down your thoughts, you are not only helping yourself. This is of course the basis for sharing your thoughts. Your finished article will be read by others. Readers are immersed in your thoughts and moved by your perspective. They learn from your work.
As others read your article, they form opinions about your topic. This may trigger discussions on the subject, whether with you or others. Through the reaction of your readers, you can discover new perspectives. Develop your thoughts further or come to completely new conclusions. Stimulating something together is a thousand times more pleasant than hatching something alone.
Reactions trigger appreciation
Praise and perception of your article trigger positive feelings. What you have accomplished will feel even better. You will gain visibility and recognition. Even constructive feedback can expand you and help you learn from your mistakes.
Remove concerns on missing writing skills
Uncertainty when doing something for the first time is a normal feeling. But once you have taken the first steps or even finished your article, you feel much more confident. With a little practice, routine sets in. You don’t have to write your article alone. Getting feedback during the writing process is quite normal. Even the professionals do it. So take the opportunity to exchange ideas with others on your writing journey. You can only grow from their feedback.
If you are not convinced yet, there are also other advantages of writing articles and I would like to at least mention them.
- You can give back to the community.
- You get out of your comfort zone by starting something new.
- You will experience a relaxing and calming pastime.
- Writing is good for your health.
- In remote times, writing is even more important. Because you can exchange with others in an asynchronous way.
- It helps you in writing documentation.
- You learn to request feedback and handle it.
Which of the listed benefits are most important to you? Are there any others or do you even disagree with some of them? Feel free to share your thoughts with me. In any case, you see there is a lot to get back when you actively share your thoughts in writing. So set yourself a goal for your upcoming article. Think about a few topics that are close to your heart and that you are already researching or encountering in your daily work.
Part 2 preview
I still want to give you a preview of the next article in this series on the topic of writing. There you’ll find a starter kit to fill the first white pages with life. Together with a step-by-step explanation of how you can approach writing.
Anyone can write – give it a try.