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We live in an era of short-form: abbreviations, text messaging, emojis, and internet memes. Whether you use any or all of these, the fact still remains that you need to know how to write.
Writing is the greatest form of expression and creativity when it comes to communicating your thoughts and ideas to people.
When you have an important email to write, do you blaze through it to get it done as quickly as possible, OR do you take a moment (or a few) to think of what message you want to convey? If the email is going to someone important, do you spell check and validate with a grammar tool? I sincerely hope so. But if you still need more reasons to improve your writing skills, keep reading.
Why You Should Improve Your Writing Skills
1) It’s not going away.
Writing is not a skill that is not going away anytime soon. In fact, as a society that is yearning and screaming for content on a daily basis, it is more important than ever that you improve your writing skills. The fact that we are able to write blogs and articles and messages in the millions everyday is reason enough for you to hone your talents. The words that you write in any medium will travel much further than they ever could even five years ago.
2) Better focus on your message.
From the moment that you scribble all your thoughts down on paper, to the moment that you review them, you are going to realize one very important fact. Your message, that big, huge, argument-winning conversation in your head is full of holes and needs to be strengthened. When you take the time to write your ideas down on paper, you begin to focus your message and objective on what you really want to get across.
3) LinkedIn is all YOU.
Nothing is worse than reading a LinkedIn profile littered with spelling and grammar mistakes. Whereas someone might have been looking to you to fill that position, it has now become a chore for them to continue reading. The easiest way to get to the bottom of any resume pile is to have a resume (or profile) filled with errors and grammatical errors that, despite your incredible experience, has now been pushed to the bottom of the pile.
4) Better writing skills means improved speaking skills.
There will be those presentations you need to do. And no matter how much you prepare, you will end up reading your notes more than you would like. In those moments of frustration, wouldn’t you rather have some notes that speak as you do: fluidly, calmly, not jotted together in a rush in a collections of ums and ahhs?
I have had a few presentations where I have wanted to remember some anecdotes, or need to better communicate some detailed technical information, that I was glad to have completely written down everything I wanted to say (as opposed to short form).
If for the only reason that it calmed me down, reassured me I was on the right path, and let me find my place to get going again without trying to piece together short-handed thoughts.
5) Bad grammar is a turn-off.
In work as in love, it is. If you are planning on writing those little love notes, the misuse of commas and punctuation has the potential to ensure that the message you wanted to send is NOWHERE near being received. You don’t need to be writing poems. But as on paper as in real-life, you do need to be clear with your intentions. That’s why topnotch writing skills are vital.
6) Expand your vocabulary.
This is something everyone wants to do. But we never have the time to do it. Writing is a great way to broaden your vocabulary by adding a new word here or there without having to spend hours in front of a dictionary memorizing adjectives and nouns. Once written down and understood over a number of times in written word, it is then even easier for it to enter our spoken word through conversations with friends and family.
7) Find your voice.
I never knew I had a voice until I started writing. I had ideas, I had thoughts, I had fleeting moments of clarity – but I had no channel. I only started writing, really writing, a few years ago.
But from that daily grind of trying to write something each and every day, a new world has been opened that I never knew existed. It’s unbelievable, really. I don’t think I would have known of it otherwise, had I not started writing.
Those times when we are in meetings, not sure what to say, not sure what to do, those are exactly the moments when we should go back to our desk, write out our thoughts, what we really think and find that voice. We won’t come into the office the next day reciting what we wrote. But we’ll know, you’ll know, that you have a voice and a channel to speak from.
Ideas without writing will always remain ideas. But Ideas with writing, is the first step to turning those ideas into something bigger.
Start Improving Your Writing Skills Today
Not confident in your writing skills as it stands right now? That’s understandable. Great tools like Grammarly can take out some of the pain and fear you might have. There are more that might suit your preferences better, too.
But as we all know, the hardest part about writing isn’t the doing, it’s the starting. Once you start though, you can do it all day long. Whether it’s an alarm or a timer or an appointment, make the time, commit to starting and improving your writing skills today.
Don’t worry – it will get better with practice.