Yesterday, I listed a few pros of daily writing. I’ll probably go back and add to it as more ideas cross my mind. I just wanted to get it posted, not perfected, and the same goes with this post.
After writing the below list of cons and revisiting this intro, I realized I could almost have titled these the excuses for not doing daily writing. Really, these are fears, each of which can be overcome through simplification and a different way of approaching daily writing.
The only cons of daily writing would be if I spent too long writing each piece, or if created content so bad that it actively detracted from my likeability as a person or my trustworthiness as a consultant, to the point where it costs me time or opportunities. Opportunity cost is the risk and major con of daily writing.
But beyond the time investment, and assuming your writing isn’t so bad it repels opportunities, there really is no con to daily writing unless you don’t like it or you make up a story that tells you it’s not a good idea.
Nonetheless, below are my list of “cons” (read excuses) for not doing daily writing.
It’s hard write and publish every day.
Admittedly, I started this challenge at the worst time. My first child was born last weekend, so it’s been double challenging to set aside the time. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy it – it just requires discipline.
I don’t want to write and publish on weekends.
I decided very quickly that I didn’t want to force myself to write and publish on the weekends. If it comes naturally and I have time, then sure. But usually, I prefer to spend my time with my family.
And I don’t imagine this changing any time soon, especially with my newborn on the scene. I choose family as one of my highest values (even above work).
I remember that I don’t have to write on weekends (or any days) if I don’t want to.
I wonder whether I can create *good* content on a daily basis.
The last thing I want to do is waste anybody’s time. If I can’t create some kind of value, and deliver it succinctly, I don’t want to do it at all.
Writing daily takes a *long* time unless you keep it seriously paired back. I have to try hard to keep it paired back. Editing takes long enough for even the shortest articles.
It takes way longer than it looks to think about and write a coherent message.
I’m probably setting the bar too high here, but it takes a long time to write and then edit daily posts. Even short ones. To make it work, you really gotta drop a lot of the perfectionism and just focus on shipping your ideas. If you make it NY Times standard you’ll burn yourself out.
I do believe when you write daily you naturally get better and faster at it. The key is to keep it simple and not over-sweat the minutia of your writing. Get the point across, that’s all.
You’ll be judged on your writing.
Knowledge workers are judged on their knowledge, and people will judge you on your writing as a result. People don’t care if it’s your 100th consecutive article or not: if they read your post and it’s bad, you will be judged.
The antidote, as I see it, is knowing you’re an expert either way. If you wanted your daily posts to be perfect, you’d spend all day on them. Perfection is not the point. Perfection—in the context of daily writing—is usually fear in disguise and it will hold you back from actually publishing.
Publishing is the goal of daily writing. If you can’t handle that, don’t do it.
Writing daily is uncomfortable.
There’s no way around it, writing daily is uncomfortable for all the reasons I mentioned. It’s like exercise, when you get momentum it becomes easier. When you are just starting out or resuming after a break, it’s hard. Life gets in the way. You would rather do a lot of other things.
But I’d argue the best things come from pushing through discomfort, daily writing included.
I could probably riff on a bunch of other things that suck about daily writing. I could make excuses, list reasons, use logic to it’s fullest, and talk my way out of daily writing.
The truth is, for every con there’s an antidote. A different way of thinking about or doing it. And it really comes down to what your goals are and what you’re prepared to commit to.
The reason I’m doing this experiment in the first place is because I believe in my “gut of guts” that consistency is the most crucial component to good marketing, and as a marketing strategist I need to explore that.
I’ll keep going with this daily challenge and see what I learn in the process. I’ll share what I find along the way in case this topic interests you.
If you’re on the fence, go for it. Or don’t. Nobody is making you do anything. But if you’re just scared or uncomfortable, I challenge you to stop overthinking and just try the minimum viable version of it for a while. Even if it’s bad at first.
If you’re following along, drop me a comment below.