by Cara Lumen
To really understand something you need to teach it in some form. You may explore an idea by writing a series of blog posts on the subject. You might learn to do something better by writing an ebook or home study course on how to do it. Or you may just write in order to figure out your own next steps. Writing down your ideas and thoughts is one of the best ways to deepen your understanding – of a topic – of yourself.
I love to write. And I particularly love to write to sort myself out. Sometimes I sit down with only a glimmer in my mind and begin to write what I think about it. Like now. I just finished writing a post on submitting articles and I organically used the phrase “writing for discovery.” I liked the phrase and wanted to explore what that meant to me. So I simply have started this post to see what shows up.
Talk to yourself
All of the answers to everything lie within you. You already know them. You just have to uncover them. Sometimes journaling is a way to talk to yourself – or actually listen to yourself. Sit down at your computer or with paper and pen and ask yourself a question like “What am I to do next?” or ‘Which one shall I choose…and why?” Then write whatever shows up.
Writing it down makes it solid
When you write your thoughts out they are no longer vague, whispy, unformed uncaptured flickers of insights. They become visible. So writing a list of article ideas or marketing plans for the coming year, or the outline of a new ebook or course, makes them begin to come to life. I liken it to having a baby – you know it’s there but you don’t know what it looks like till it is born. The same with your ideas, you have to birth them into words before you can help them grow up to be what they want to be.
What you learn may interest others
Not always, but often what you write will be of interest to others. For instance, my blog Passionately on Purpose http://www.passionatelyonpurpose.com is about inspiring others to believe they can. It’s a combination of practical and spiritual that offers both insights and action steps. So sometimes, my own sorting out process becomes a guideline for another person to begin similar steps. Be certain you are exploring something that interests your own community and gives them insights they can consider for themselves. Emerson had it figured out:
“For the instinct is sure, that prompts him to tell his brother what he thinks. He then learns that in going down into the secrets of his own mind he has descended into the secrets of all minds. He learns that he who has mastered any law in his private thoughts, is master to that extent of all men whose language he speaks, and of all into whose language his own can be translated. The poet, in utter solitude remembering his spontaneous thoughts and recording them, is found to have recorded that which men in crowded cities find true for them also.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Watch what shows up
Just like the phrase that inspired this article and became its title, keep an eye out for the clarity that shows up. It may come from something you read or something you heard. It may come from your own writing. I found a new focus for my business when I was writing about what I thought people were willing to pay money for in today’s economy. I believe they will buy education – the gift that continues to give, to grow, to enhance, to expand. And I thought of all the valuable things people know and decided I will help thoughtful leaders effectively organize their ideas so they can educate and inspire their chosen community. I can help people focus their ideas into signature information products that enhance their expert status and earn them passive income. So my exploration into the buying needs of my community led me to a new emphasis for my business. Watch what shows up as you begin to develop an idea.
What do you need to uncover?
Are you faced with a difficult decision or do you have to make peace with a necessary choice? Are you looking to make a change and seek insights? Watch for the signs and signals that surround you at every moment and you will find your answers. You might choose to journal every day. You might just stay on the lookout for a question you have or an idea you want to sort out. You might be inspired to write a post, or create a solution for a client that can benefit others. Take some time to sit quietly and listen to what the Universe would like to tell you. Then write it down and make your choices. Write for discovery. Your inner wisdom wants to be heard.
© 2010 Cara Lumen
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