Writing isn’t just a job. Writing is so much more than a typical occupation– it’s more like a compulsion, a part of who you are, and who you are always becoming. And it’s something that should be a part of your everyday lifestyle and routine, especially if it’s something you want to do and enjoy doing on a regular basis.

Here are three reasons to write every day.

1. Writing every day is therapeutic.

Regardless of what you’re writing, the act of writing itself helps you think better and deeper about whatever it is you’re writing about, as long as you aren’t in too much of a rush while you’re writing it. Whether you’re journaling, writing the next scene in your novel, or typing up a book review, writing will help you fine-tune what you think and feel about any subject.

When I succumb to the writing process, my mind opens, and I’m able to think freely and deeply about whatever it is I’m writing about in a more relaxed and focused way. If I have a lot of thoughts crowding my head, writing about them lets me sort through them one by one and alleviates any anxiety I may have about them. And if I have a lot of feelings about a particular topic, writing about that topic helps me sort through them all in a more practical and focused way. All of this is incredibly therapeutic. Even better than therapy, I might argue.

On the days I don’t write, I find myself more anxious and unfocused. Even if all I do is write a brief paragraph about how my day went, I instantly feel calmer and clearer.

2. Writing every day will keep you motivated to keep writing. And will help you work toward and achieve larger writing goals.

When I write every day, I allow myself to fine-tune the ideas and feelings I’m having about what I’m writing about bit by bit, which tends to make what I write about more well-rounded, thoughtful, and complete in the long run. This makes me feel like I’m continually working on something and building something as an authentic writer, which keeps me motivated to write every day. And the more motivated I feel to keep writing every day, the more focused I get on whatever I’m writing, which allows me to use my own authentic writing voice and perspective.

Keep in mind, for instance, that if you write 500 words per day, at the end of the week, you’ll have 3,500 words written, and in half a year you could have the first draft of an entire novel written. Writing a little bit every day will help you break any larger writing goal down into more manageable and enjoyable steps that are easier to complete and focus on each day. And each day, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment for having worked toward your larger goal, which means you don’t have to wait until your first draft is done to feel like you’ve done any work.

3. Writing every day keeps you creative.

The writing process has its ups and downs. And sometimes it’s easier to focus on the final product of what you’re trying to write so much, too much, that you lose sight of the profound creative outlet writing offers as you’re writing. But rewriting and revising is an important creative part of the writing process and should be embraced, even seen as fun. Searching for the perfect word to describe something or someone or changing how a paragraph is structured, for example, constantly allows you to be creative with language– allows you to be an artist. And keeps you constantly learning and growing—both of which are critical to remaining creative.

What’s more, the more you write, the more creative writing ideas you’ll have. If you write every day, you’ll constantly be thinking about what to write tomorrow or the next day and will have more ideas for what to write than you might know what to do with at one time. Each idea spurs another to explore and write about.

Truthfully, there are probably more than three reasons why you should write every day, but the three reasons listed above are the reasons currently at the top of my list. If you’re interested in starting and maintaining a daily writing habit too, you’ll want to read 5 Tips for Maintaining a Daily Writing Habit next.

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