This morning I was reading one of the five million newsletters I subscribe to and the topic was about moving your body. It was yet one more call to exercise regularly and talked about how establishing this habit is easier than you think, because our bodies are made to move.
I'll second that. I know I feel much, much better when I'm getting out every morning to walk.
But it got me to thinking about how important it is to move your mind, also. Especially for writers. I've been facilitating a discussion group for my church around the book Birthing A Greater Reality. The book is dense in places, which is a nice way of saying that sometime I've really got to concentrate on it, more so because I'm leading a discussion of it.
At first I struggled a bit. But now I'm totally loving it, because I really have to concentrate when I sit down to read it. I take notes in the margins, I underline, I look up concepts. I move my mind.
And I'm pretty sure that our minds are made to move just as much as our bodies are. Because the more I stretch my mind, the easier it gets to plow through dense material. The more I focus and concentrate, making notes in the margins, listening intently to the Sunday messages on the material, the more my mind wakes up and engages with the world.
How Writers Move Their Minds
Does that almost sound kinky? Just a brief aside, never mind. Here's my list:
1. We write. Duh. But with the crazy demands of our lives it is very easy to forget that writers write and that we actually need to practice our craft once in awhile. Or every day. And that we write to discover. That we write to move our minds.
2. We read. We read anything and everything from cereal boxes to blogs to novels to non-fiction books. The best way to teach yourself how to write is to read anything you can get your hands on. And read tons of examples of what it is you want to write–my friend Linda, for instance, has set herself the challenge of reading 100 YA novels in order to teach herself about the genre.
3. We discuss. We communicate with other writers, in person or via the internet or phone and talk about writing. There's nothing more energizing and interesting than a group of writers gathered to talk shop. Because "shop" includes just about everything under the sun.
4. We think deep thoughts. Because all of the above foster deep thoughts. Well, actually mine tend to be shallow at times (especially after I've watched too much trashy TV), but who cares, at least I'm thinking.
5. We go within. By giving our minds a rest through meditation, prayer, or whatever works for us, we actually allow our minds to move with more ease and less effort.
What have I missed? How do you move your mind? And how does it impact your writing?
***Another way to move your mind is to feed it images, which you can do via a vision board. Sign up for my newsletter and receive my free Ebook, Jump Start Your Book With A Vision Board. The form is to the right of this post!
Photograph by float.