There is one exercise that can:
- Improve your writing, and
- Boost your output
I will be ‘walking the walk’ in writing this article. I’m currently timing myself. Why? Because I have been slowing down. That’s right, slowing down and breaking my own rules.
You see, all of us have a tendency to fall into our Comfort Zone. This is that zone where we become complacent. Like all areas of our life we eventually want to reduce stresses. That’s why we would rather sleep in than get up a half hour early and go for a run.
If you imagine your comfort zone as a circle surrounding you. When you traverse that boundary things tend to get tough. If requires work. However, a special thing happens when you continuously push yourself to do more than what makes you feel good. That’s right your comfort zone circle expands.
So back to walking the walk. What’s that about? Well, I am pushing myself to increase my writing speed. Normally I write comfortably at about one to two thousand words a minute. Today I’ve been raising the bar. I’m writing some four thousand words an hour. Of course doing this takes work. For starters, I had to gradually work my way up. The way to do this is to practice, practice and practice.
To do this properly you should:
- Write as fast as you can for a specified amount of time (i.e. like 15 minutes)….and time yourself.
- To ensure you are improving you will need to keep track of your writing speed. I use an excel spreadsheet to write down my writing speed. Now sometimes I write for 15 minutes and other times I may go a full hour. You’ll need to normalize your speed and so similar to the way you would keep track of your driving speed (miles per hour) you can express your writing speed as words per hour. So if you write 200 words in 15 minutes your words per hour (or WPH) is 200 x 4 = 800 WPH.
- Finally keep pushing yourself to surpass your speed. If you start off writing at 800 WPH try pushing yourself to write faster.
- When writing – just write! That means no stopping to go back and fix errors. There’s a time for writing and a time for editing. Nows the time to lay down your first draft. There will be plenty of time later on to go back and edit.
So here’s the walk the walk surprise. I’ve been using this method to write this article. As of NOW the word count is 418. The time writing is 7 minutes. So my WPH is (418 x 60)/7 = 3583 WPH. That’s not bad.
Now you try it.
Here’s an exercise. Write 15 minutes non stop trying to write as fast as you can. Tomorrow try it again but this time try to go a little faster.