If you clicked on this blog post, it says something good about you. (More on that in just a second. First a couple of questions.)
Are you a speaker that writes?
Or, are you a writer that speaks?
It’s an important distinction. For me, I’m a speaker that writes. My first language, if you will, is speaking. Sure, speaking and writing are in the same family, but just like my kids, they’re different from one another. Just because you’re a good speaker doesn’t mean it will necessarily transfer to the written word. And vice-versa. I don’t say that to discourage you. It’s just helpful to know as you think through how to best leverage your speaking and writing gifts. Personally, writing takes a little more muscle and effort than speaking does for me. The good news though is both have the same goal — to engage and serve their audience.
Which takes me back to the opening sentence of this week’s blog post and why clicking on it was, in some ways, a test. You see, if you didn’t click this blog post, you probably don’t consider speaking and writing as something you do. However, here’s an insight that could be a breakthrough for you. Even though you clicked on this blog post, there might be something in you that isn’t convinced you’re a speaker or writer. For many of us, we’re waiting on someone to tell us we’re a speaker or writer.
You know what makes you a speaker or writer?
If you speak and if you write.
If you don’t speak or write, you’re not.
A published book doesn’t make you a writer. You had to be a writer BEFORE something gets published. A conference of hundreds of people won’t make you a speaker. You’ve got to speak to a few people to get started on the journey.
There are two secrets to becoming a writer and speaker: Discipline and Belief.
Discipline doesn’t care if you think you’re a writer or not. Discipline asks, “Have you written anything lately?”
For example, Stephen King writes 1,000 words a day, six days a week. That’s discipline. He doesn’t wait on the inspiration. He works for the inspiration.
Belief takes its cues from our discipline, or lack thereof. Belief asks, “Is there evidence I can point to that I’m writing and speaking?”
If you’re not writing, you’re not a writer.
If you are writing, congratulations. You’re a writer. The same is true for speaking.
And maybe, just maybe, that’s why you clicked on an blog post with a subject line of: Speaking & Writing Tips. There’s something in you that wants this to be true. But, you don’t have to wait any longer.
You need to write.
You need to develop a talk.
You need to do the work.
Without the work, there won’t be anything for an audience to listen to or read.
To do that, here’s a writing tip to get you started which I took from Stephen King. If he can write 1,000 words a day, six days a week, I figured I could write 500 words a day, five days a week. Showing up, every morning, doing the work. Not waiting on the inspiration but working for it.
This week, how about we start there? How about you start with 200 words a day for three days? Can you do that?
I think you can. After all, you clicked on this blog post.