We are all so accustomed to typing. I am typing as I write this article. But how often do you pick up a pen and write? Probably not often enough! Writing by hand is not only good for you, it is fun. There is something so wonderful about holding a favorite pen or other writing instrument in your hand and writing words on a lined piece of paper–or unlined if you prefer!
I was in a meeting the other day and while I was waiting for my turn to speak, I found myself doodling wildly on the page. Studies show that doodling increases focus and concentration. Doodling on a computer isn’t the same thing at all. Give it a try—go pick up a pen, find a piece of paper and let it flow. I find that I often start writing words when I doodle. It is creative and stimulating.
When was the last time you hand wrote a card or letter to someone? Addressed an envelope?
If you are interested in writing more, here are two unique ways to combine writing with connecting with others. The organization Postcrossing offers a free membership for anyone who would like to write and receive postcards from others. You can pick what areas in the world you are sending yours and where you would like to receive them from.
Then there is the British organization From Me to You. Volunteer writers write letters of encouragement to cancer patients. They provide training and guidance so you are not stuck trying to figure out what to write. If you are a cancer patient yourself, you can register to receive letters.
I think of hand writing vs typing in the same way I do walking vs driving. I need to do both. I drive to get places quickly and because it is my main source of transportation. But if I don’t go outdoors and walk often enough I physically don’t feel great. If all I do is type, I get tired of sitting in one place and staring at a screen. When I pick up a writing instrument and write, I feel creative, energized, and happy. Try it! Take a break from your typing, and pick up a pen and write a little. You will likely feel a little better when you return to the keyboard.
Treat yourself to a writing instrument you like, that feels good in your hand. I am fond of fountain pens that can be found inexpensively on ebay for under $5 (there are expensive ones too for thousands of dollars). There are different ink colors and attractive stationary that make hand writing even more enjoyable.
If you have kids or grandkids, they may have rudimentary cursive skills or only know how to print. Whatever their abilities are, put a few pieces of interesting paper and a fun pen in front of them and I bet you can get them to write more.
So please, go pick up a writing instrument, find a piece of paper, and start writing. You won’t be sorry!
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