Monday, October 30, 2017
Kathleen Elliott Vinson (Suffolk), Writing Lockdowns: A Path to Mindful Writing
As is often said, lawyers are writers. Thus, good writing is critical for success in the law. Yet even the best writers sometimes struggle. The writing process may include peaks and valleys, starting out in the “forest of delusions of grandeur,” and then traveling into “crippling insecurity-ville.”1 Along the way, procrastination and writer’s block may contribute to feelings of being overwhelmed when writing efforts stall and deadlines loom. Layer on the fast-paced digital world of constant multi-tasking and hyperconnectivity to e-mail, social media, and text-messaging, and writers can be left feeling distracted and frazzled while their focus decreases and their stress rises. Now more than ever, writers need to find ways to practice mindful writing.
Mindful writing means focusing on the task at hand, not dwelling on past writing projects or worrying about future ones. It may seem simple enough, but it isn’t easy. Being a mindful writer, focused on the present, is a skill that can be learned with practice, and it pays big dividends in the legal profession.