I have in the past forgotten why I tried to create a daily writing habit. So I am putting my reasons here.
My job depends on writing
This is somewhat of a harsh reality for me. I was the naive student getting into postgraduate a good few years ago. Back then I did not know how much writing I would be expected to do. I just wanted to create new things.
Fast forward to now. As a relative new faculty member of two years, I have spent a considerable amount of time writing letters and reports related to administrative duties, reference letters for students applying for scholarships and new postgraduate programmes, lecture notes, course outlines and programme descriptions, and of course, research manuscripts and their accompanying cover letters.
I would say about 25% of my day is spent in writing in some form.
I have no choice but to write.
But, of lately, I find myself neglecting my research writing. And the harsh reality is that we are judged primarily by our research outputs. Our assessment and promotion (A&P) committee claims that promotion is based on 45% research, 45% teaching and 10% service. But from the little that is said outside those highly confidential meetings, I gathered that research is the main criteria for promotion. A&P looks at mainly journal publication in high-ranked journals and works having several citations.
If the gamers want publications then us the players have no choice but to give our administrative heads the journal publications. So manuscripts have to be written. The main method to dot this is to write daily.
Writing daily will piece together sentences and paragraphs which I can then build to a full article.
Writing daily is the recipe for success
Successful people who have gone before advocate for a daily writing habit. Seth Godin, an author of 18 books, writes daily. Contemporary and digital marketer, Nicolas Cole, built a business that requires his daily writing outputs.
So, if there is a recipe for success, who am I to go against it? Why would I want to abandon a recipe that has worked so well with others?
Practice showing up and it will eventually get easier
Note the keyword here: easier. Writing every day is hard work. But when you show up each day in the beginning, you tell your body and mind that this practice of showing up to write is important to you. When something is important to you, you feed it. In this case, you feed it time and words.
You need to give your brain and body enough repetitions to adjust to a new normal. Years of not writing daily cannot be undone in a few sessions. You need the everyday repetition to cement the idea that writing everyday is what you do. You have to create a new identity for yourself. The one of a daily writer. And when you create the new identity, showing up to write will become that something that you just do every day.
So accept the reality of your job, the reality that success is not an overnight event, and that eventually the act of writing will become easier with time (and repetitions).