Lessons from My Mom
Who You Are then What You Do

The Write Stuff and the Write Thinking

One of the reasons I decided to create this blog was to write down my ideas and share them with others. Writing has become an exercise in articulating my commitments to myself and to others. It has become a habit that enables me to discuss my thoughts and to commit them to written words. Ideas that swirl around in our heads can evaporate and are only meaningful if they are held in captivity and examined in writing. 

In our minds we are legends. :) We are very collected, poised, ready for anything. We can think we are pretty awesome. :) But the reality is we need to evaluate what we are doing, where we are going, and the big differences between what we intend and what we do. 

My son is off to Yosemite to hike for a week with members of his senior class. I have encouraged him to journal. I told him to try not to write about what he did and saw, but about what he is thinking about. Not necessarily profound thoughts but just his current thoughts. My daughter is studying abroad and her lengthy e-mails on her experiences are very insightful. She has become a very good writer because her words describe the emotional and intellectual content of her experiences. Writing will help them and anyone who does it. It is not a student exercise, it is a life habit.Escher

We all need to write more. More about who we are and who we intend to be. We need to write our career ideas, our relationship commitments, our bucket lists, and our goals. That's why I developed the SWIVEL_(new_2012)  to assist people in capturing in lists and brief written expressions what they want to strengthen in their lives. 

A few sample questions from the SWiVEL to prompt you to write.

  • What three things do I have to change in my life? Things I have to improve or work on?
  1. _________________________________________________________________________
  2. _________________________________________________________________________
  3. _________________________________________________________________________
  • What three issues, causes, or things am I passionate about? Things that are meaningful to me.
  1. _________________________________________________________________________
  2. _________________________________________________________________________
  3. _________________________________________________________________________
  • What am I curious about? I would really appreciate some help exploring/learning about these subjects.


Write to yourself so you see and hear who you are.

There are studies that show that writing goals improves goal achievement. Did we really need a study to prove this? The act and process of writing deepens our commitment, even more so if you share it.

Have you ever seen FutureMe.org? Where you can write your future self an e-mail. You can write anything. Describe how you will be different, what you have accomplished, or how you have changed.....The point is any time we write, we are writing to our future self about the past. Writing helps us understand the past in the future. 

Ink your commitments to yourself. Write it down. And feel free to change it and make it better as you get more perspective through your networking and mentoring experiences. Literally comparing notes with others can bring powerful results. Sharing your well thought out questions and ideas will always yield more insights. Relying solely on your your ability to talk---your adlibness, your glibness is safer and easier and a bit more dangerous. You probably have well developed verbal packages that both falsely defend your actions and protect your ego. These need to be tested in the laboratory of writing. Write and read what you are thinking and I guarantee your thinking will change. Written words demand precision and accuracy. They summon the editor in you to make the words convey what you are thinking. 

 So move your thinking to the write! Type it, scribble it, just write more. Your personal narrative will improve and be more believable and more authentic! Your questions will be more potent. Your connections with others will be more meaningful. Write!

Thanks for reading. John