If you feel a burning desire to write, it’s highly likely that you already possess certain mental and emotional qualities that can serve you well. Before launching into your next writing project, boldly embrace your strengths and shine a light on the skills you need to develop. These qualities include:
- Verbal acuity, usually from an early age.
- Love for and a unique “ear” for words, language, rhythm, imagery, and story.
- Vivid imagination, creative.
- Strong visual, auditory, and sensate memory.
- Astute observer who employs all five (or six) senses when witnessing and remembering events.
- Very conscious of feelings, empathetic, passionate.
- Inquisitive, curious, open to new thoughts and interpretations.
- Visionary, sees larger picture and envisions beginning, middle, and end of stories.
- Patient, able to delay gratification, allow the telling to unfold.
- Comfortable being alone for long periods of time.
- Likes to live in his or her head; daydreamer.
- Actually likes to think.
- Able to focus, capable of occasionally achieving a one-track mind.
- Detail oriented without being obsessive or an excessive worrier.
- Affinity for understanding and conveying multiple points of view.
Every writer’s brain is uniquely “designed” and few possess all of the qualities on the list. What matters most is that you notice the qualities you have and identify how they help—or hinder—your writing. View your affinities in a positive manner and reinforce your use of them to craft works of art by thinking and speaking positive thoughts about your process—it’s been scientifically proven that an optimistic brain is a happy and productive brain.
It’s far too easy to fall into a mind-set that writing is hard, arduous, demanding work that requires you to sacrifice a normal life for one filled with deadlines, anxiety, and stress. What’s more desirable is to create a mind-set that recognizes, utilizes, and celebrates the qualities that brought you to writing and inspires you to write even when it becomes a physical, mental, or emotional challenge. Reaffirming and employing the qualities that accompany your desire to write is more likely to lead to success and pleasure.
Take ten minutes to ponder your affinities for writing and jot down ideas for expanding or developing new affinities. The more you recognize, honor, and make the best use of your natural affinities, the sooner you fire up your writing brain for more productive writing sessions.