This post is part of a 26-week series, shared with my son at Julian Jotting

Blogs were the main entry point to my participation on social media. I’ve never been a real fan of Facebook or Twitter, but I’ve followed blogs for almost two decades. I love the way they allow me to deep-dive into someone’s thought processes, obsessions, network of websites they visit, and I particularly like reading long-form posts. I’m kind of tickled that I’ve been able to motivate my son, Julian, to keep a blog of his own and participate in this daily blogging challenge we’ve set up (ahem: not that I’ve actually been able to keep up with him… yet).

There are two particularly powerful lessons that I’m hoping that act of blogging will provide for Julian, as well as be reinforced for myself:

  1. Writing well requires regular practice. And I think writing well is among the most critical skills to develop and cultivate across the lifespan. Writing well means thinking clearly, logically, and often more succinctly. I also think a writing practice builds a more structured mind and the ability to remain quiet and focused for long stretches of time. I’ve understood the power of the regular practice of writing over years of keeping journals myself and it’s become important to me to both share this lesson with my kids and practice what I preach more consistently.
  2. Publicly sharing (some of) what I write is really, really hard because I have a tremendously difficult time with posting anything that is not meticulously edited and sculpted. I write for a living. I teach my students how to write as well (at my best). Editing is absolutely a crucial aspect of this process, perhaps more like 80% of the process. But blogging daily is impossible if I’m going to try to live up to those editing standards. What blogging daily gives me and plenty others is the daily practice with just doing it: spilling some ideas, as rough as they may be, out into the open. There’s tremendous value in hushing the incessant critic in my head and just doing it… More on this in later posts.

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