Welcome to November!
At this time last year, I decided to start writing a new article every Monday and Thursday. What has happened since then has been unexpected and totally awesome. We have a community of more than 27,000 people reading each week, over 100,000 people visit the website each month, and more than 1.5 million people have read my articles this year. Of course, I’ve made a ton of mistakes and written terrible articles along the way as well, but I can safely say that starting this blog has been one of the best decisions I have made.
Because writing each week has been so valuable for me, I want to challenge you to also follow a writing schedule … for the next 30 days. There is no pressure to participate (I’ll return to regular posts on Thursday), but my hope is that this challenge will help you kickstart the consistency that is so important for making long-term progress on your goals.
My good friend Scott Dinsmore recently ran a similar challenge and so I’m taking a page from his book and calling this The Become a Writer Challenge.
Here are the details…
The Become a Writer Challenge (Examples)
You can approach this challenge however you would like, but here are a few examples.
- If you’re an aspiring author, you could write part of your novel every Sunday.
- If you’re an entrepreneur, you could start a blog and every Friday write down what you learned in your business that week.
- If you want to improve your fitness, you could start a journal to record your workouts each time you go to the gym.
- If you enjoy vegan cooking, you could start a website and post a “meatless Monday” recipe on your website every Monday night.
- If you’re pursuing any goal, you could start a blog and write about your progress each week.
- If you’re feeling lost or confused, you could just write about whatever strikes you each day during your lunch break and see what happens.
You get the idea. The goal isn’t necessarily to become a professional writer, but rather to write about something that is important to you, and do it consistently, for the next 30 days. This challenge is all about the power of following a system rather than setting goals.
Complete These 3 Steps
There are 3 steps to completing this challenge.
1. Pick a topic to write about and a place to record your writing.
DIRECTIONS: Personally, I think the best place to record your progress is on a website or blog. There are many options available, but I made a video (at the end of this article) that provides a step-by-step tutorial if you want to start a blog or website like I did. Obviously, you’re free to write in a notebook, Word document, or elsewhere if you don’t want to start a blog.
2. Decide when you are going to write.
DIRECTIONS: When it comes to building better habits, writing on a consistent basis has made a bigger difference for me than anything else. You are welcome to follow my Monday-Thursday writing schedule if you want. Or you can follow any variation you want: once per month, once per week, once per day. Whatever works for you and your goals. The most important thing is to have a schedule. When, exactly, are you going to write?
3. Stick to your schedule for the next 30 days.
DIRECTIONS: If you stick to your schedule for the month of November, you will have successfully completed the challenge. My hope is that this challenge will show you that progress is achieved by setting a simple schedule and following it each week, not by making outlandish goals and promises.
You don’t have to sign up to join the challenge, but if you want some accountability you are welcome to send me a message and tell me what schedule you will be following. Or you can share your plan in the comments.
Why Should I Do This?
Why should you join The Become a Writer Challenge?
1. You’ll learn.
Writing about a topic — whether it’s recording your workouts, hacking away on the book you always wanted to write, or sharing marketing ideas for your business — will automatically teach you more about it. In many cases, you will naturally become a thought leader and expert on a particular topic simply by writing about it each week.
2. You’ll teach, share, and contribute something valuable.
Sharing your thoughts and experiences with the world allows you to engage with other people and share helpful ideas with others. There are always people who will benefit from hearing about your journey.
3. You’ll hold yourself accountable.
What gets measured, gets managed. Whether you’re writing about your workouts, your business, or anything else, the act of writing makes you pay attention to that area. Paying attention means you’ll realize areas for improvement and be more attentive to mistakes that you make.
4. You’ll improve your thinking and perspective.
Writing forces you to think clearly. Good writers understand arguments and ideas from different angles and perspectives. That’s a great thing because you can develop a more solid reasoning for why you do what you do and become more respectful of other people’s opinions at the same time.
5. If you want, you can make a living from it.
I’ve been an online entrepreneur for 3 years now and my living has been made entirely off of my writing, blogs, and websites. And I’m not the only one. There are tons of freelancers, consultants, and small business owners who market their services and drive most of their clients through their popular blogs and writing. There are even technology startups like Buffer that have grown to over 1 million users almost exclusively through writing guest posts, their own blog posts, and the resulting word-of-mouth buzz.
Long story short, writing can help you achieve your goals in health, business, and life.
As I said above, my personal Become A Writer Challenge started when I began posting articles to my blog one year ago. Given how well this setup has worked for me, I think a website or blog is the best place for your writing to live. The video tutorial below will explain exactly how you can start a website or blog like I did when I began.
Don’t see a video? Click here to watch it on YouTube.
As you watch the video, there are two things to note:
- There are many ways to start a website or blog. This video explains how I have created all of my websites. I like this option better than the free choices that are out there because it allows you to have your own domain name and it provides more options for customization. (And it’s inexpensive.)
- The video shows you exactly how to setup a blog or website with zero tech experience, but if you’re still not comfortable with the process, then go to HostGator and click on the “Live Chat” button in the top right corner. That will open up a chat box with customer support and you can tell them that you want to start a blog and have WordPress installed, but you’re having trouble with the technology. If you ask nicely, they will usually set it up for you.
Either way, I recommend watching the video above at least once so that you understand what is going on and where you’ll be logging in on your website.
- Pick a topic that you want to write about or keep track of for the next 30 days.
- Set a schedule (when, exactly, are you going to write down your progress?)
- Stick to the schedule for the next 30 days.
If you have any questions, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to help.
Good luck with the challenge! I can’t wait to see what writing does for you!