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  • Writer's pictureJudy

Oct. 23, 2022: Patterns

I was recently listening to a podcast from Tony Robbins, on strategies for becoming more productive. He kept coming back to PATTERNS.

According to him, if we can do 3 things regarding patterns, we can increase our productivity and become more likely to reach our goals: Recognize Patterns; Use Patterns; Create Patterns.

While definitions of the word pattern vary, almost all include words like repeated or guide. The scientific definition says it is sequences. When I think of patterns in our lives, I also think of habits, or routines or rituals. While some patterns we set up by design, others we just fall into.

I recently brought up this topic of patterns with a writer’s group.

What are the patterns of our writing life? What is your writing schedule like? That is a pattern. What are the steps or sequences that you go through when creating your stories? Or writing your articles? That is a pattern. How and when do you submit writing? Those are patterns. The results of those patterns tell us if they are working the way we had hoped.

We talked about the other patterns that fill our lives, that impact our writing life. For example, many of us have other jobs as well. We have family obligations. Even things as basic as whether we are an early bird who rises before the sun, or a night owl who stays up until all hours, those patterns impact our work as writers.

Coming back to Tony Robbins’ premise about patterns, recognizing patterns not only in our own lives, but in the lives of others, can be powerful. Looking at the patterns in the lives of our mentors or those we admire can be enlightening. Acknowledging the patterns in our lives that are helpful, as well as those that are not, can be empowering.

Once we recognize these patterns, put them to work for us! One writer shared that while she had scheduled her writing time for when her children went to bed, she found that by the time they were asleep, she was too exhausted to make productive use of any scheduled writing time. She flipped her pattern and woke earlier than everyone, and wrote before the day began. She created and used a pattern to increase her own productivity.

Clearly, there is more to success as a writer than patterns, but they are a great place to start.

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