Maybe I’m biased – after all, the fact that I’m typing this article places me squarely in the category of “writer.” But studies show that writing can actually improve your career, your mental health, and your quality of life. How?
We’ll examine each of these aspects in turn. We’ll also discuss some simple exercises you can use to improve your writing.
Writing to Improve Your Career
At its most basic, writing is essential to some aspects of work. For example, in order to land the job you now have, you likely had to write a resume.
Maybe you’re at that stage now, and you need some assistance. Check here to discover ways of improving your resume writing skills.
Beyond the resume, writing can be even more impactful. “Writing is an essential life skill that allows you to get your point across, be persuasive, and communicate with your friends and colleagues. Being able to convey what you mean quickly and efficiently will make all the difference to your ability to pursue a fulfilling and successful career.”
The following are a few circumstances in which you might use writing skills in your career:
- Resume and cover letter
- Thank-you email to your interviewer
- Email, text message, and printed correspondence to colleagues, management, employees, vendors, clients, and customers
- Ad copy
- Social media posts
- Company website
- Research papers
- Journal publications
- Press releases
- Brochures, menus, or catalogs
On a personal level, to-do lists and writing your goals along with steps needed to achieve them can help you be more productive in the workplace. Perhaps you can think of more areas that you use writing specifically in your field.
Writing to Improve Mental Health
“As human beings are social animals, we need to communicate with each other on a daily basis,” says one life skills resource.
Writing can be used to help clear your mind of the day’s stresses. Make a list of the things you need to do, and put them in order of priority. Once the items are on paper, they may seem less daunting, no longer buzzing like a swarm inside your brain.
Journaling is another option. A private journal is a place where you can record joys and pains. You can write about troubling events to help make sense of them. Again, the act of simply thinking about and recording your thoughts can help you overcome distracting ruminations.
A specific type of journaling is known as a gratitude journal. Write down a few things you are thankful for each day. They can be big things or simple things, like seeing a beautiful flower on a walk outdoors.
Writing to Improve Satisfaction
Quality of life, satisfaction, contentment, happiness – whatever words you use to describe it, you know it’s what you’re looking for.
It has been noted that millennials and younger generations derive less satisfaction from work than did previous generations. Many are searching for something fulfilling to do outside of work.
Writing could be just the thing. In a blog, for example, you can explore any topic that excites you, expressing your thoughts on it. Share travel experiences, recipes, or DIY tutorials. Try and review your favorite products. The possibilities are endless.
How to Improve Your Writing Skills
You don’t have to go back to school to improve your skills. Try out these helpful hints.
- Be precise. You want your written communications to get your point across. Therefore, it has to convey the right meaning. Say exactly what you mean, not using vague language or figuratively “beating around the bush.” Re-read your messages before hitting send, and ask yourself, “Will the recipient be clear on exactly what I’m asking? Do my words leave room for doubt?”
- Be concise. There is a time and place for flowery writing, but the office it is not. Instead of a 2-page memo, can you say what you need to in a paragraph? Employ word economy – using the fewest words possible to convey meaning. Doing so will save you time in writing, and recipients will be more likely to read your messages in their entirety.
- Be accurate. Poor writing quality gets noticed, and it can hurt your reputation. Use a document checker such as Grammarly to correct common spelling, punctuation, and grammar mistakes. Pay attention to the notifications and learn from them; you’ll make fewer mistakes in the future.
- Write every day. Practice makes perfect. Set aside five minutes a day to journal, make a list, send a card, or pen a few sentences for that novel you’ve been meaning to write.
- Read every day. If you read high-quality written content, you’ll naturally assimilate the sentence structure, wording, and style.
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