3 Ways Spring Can Make You A Better Writer
It’s been a long time coming… Just when we thought we couldn’t take one more Nor’easter, power outage, and frenzied trip to the store to fight off fellow humans for the last gallon of milk on the shelves, Mother Nature relented, and given us instead the purple of a hyacinth and the bright freshness of air and sun playing together once again.
Spring is synonymous with new life, hope, and light—and in addition to the fact that those things are just plain old good in and of themselves, they’re also good for writers. When I say “writers,” by the way, I mean everyone! Whether it’s your resume, a blog for your company website, a thank you note, your LinkedIn profile, a novel, or a report at work, you write, and Spring can help you do it better.
Spring Shows Us There Doesn’t Need To Be Anything New Under The Sun
Ask anyone why Spring makes them happy, and chances are they’ll wax poetic about budding blossoms and trees and grass—the season brings out the Walt Whitman in us, and we’re all a bit lovestruck by the tender beauty of it.
And here’s the kicker: It doesn’t matter that the same thing happened last year. It doesn’t matter that the same thing will happen next year. It’s enthralling, and it gets us every time.
It’s been said that there’s nothing new under the sun. That’s true, but notice how it doesn’t keep us from smiling when the sun shines? There is a temptation, when we write, to go for novelty as a way to make the piece more effective—but when the focus is novelty, the end result is not beauty or authenticity; it’s a gimmick, and its impact will be fleeting.
Spring shows us that what really moves us is not novelty but innovation. Unlike novelty, innovation doesn’t prioritize newness. It prioritizes the thing itself—your potential as displayed on a resume, a tree’s purpose in bearing fruit, your company’s vision as it unfolds on your website—and allows the sun’s warmth to illuminate a unique instance of that thing.
In other words, a tree is not a new thing. A tree blossoming is not a new thing. But that particular tree blossoming in its own way is a source of joy and nourishment. It’s effective because it is true to itself in playing out its own variation on the theme of treeness.
Likewise, a resume is not a new thing. But your particular resume, informed with your experiences, unique potential, and personality, can be effective if you cultivate it with authenticity. Each one of us is a variation on the theme of humanity, and how much of an impact we have in our expression depends not on trying to force a new theme but on being the truest form of our own variation.
Springs Helps Us Not Take Ourselves Too Seriously
I knew it was Spring when my lovable oaf of a German Shepherd, Max, flung himself onto the grass and rolled around with wild abandon, all paws and floppy ears and goofy grin. He’s a large dog, and he’s not a puppy, but he knows how to respond to a sun-dappled field.
We do too! Spring is the great “un-stifler,” inviting us to be a little freer in our way of moving through this world, a little more inclined to deep breaths and open arms, a little closer to the wild abandon we’d chose if we felt we could.
Spring is about exuberance, not perfection, and if we want people to be drawn in by our writing, we’d do well to remember the joy even just a bit of light brings.
Spring is the great “un-stifler,” inviting us to be a little freer in our way of moving through this world, a little more inclined to deep breaths and open arms, a little closer to the wild abandon we’d chose if we felt we could.
Springs Reconnects Us With…Everything
It’s easy to see how Spring is a time we feel really connected to nature. We literally shed the barriers that exist between us and the natural world—coats and scarves are tossed aside, windows and doors are flung open, boots are exchanged for sandals and, when we get a chance, sandals come off and skin touches earth.
Underneath the surface of that earth, roots forge their way through and over and under, anchoring and seeking nourishment. Above the surface of that earth, flowers and trees and plants reach for sunlight, and we breathe together, trading oxygen and carbon dioxide, syncing our breath like lovers do, our existence intertwined.
It’s a symphony of being, and you can’t pull one piece out to try to live on its own. You never can, but Spring makes it obvious. We’re connected—to the earth and every being (used in the widest possible sense of the word) that lives here with us. We’re connected to whatever or whoever it is that underlies all of this. I relate to this source as God. Others, as Rumi says, call the Beloved by a different name. It’s the Love that matters, not the letters we string together in our attempt to define the ineffable.
Wayne Dyer was fond of saying, “The same Intelligence that makes the flower grow flows through each of us.” That’s exhilarating, and humbling, and uplifting all at once. It’s also pretty darn useful for writers, because it means that we (all of us!) are connected to an inexhaustible Source of joy and creation and growth and beauty.
This Source flings wildflowers out like an old lady at a park tossing breadcrumbs to pigeons—if you’re not familiar with the sight, it’s A LOT of breadcrumbs, scattered with reckless extravagance. We’re connected to a Source whose modus operandi is reckless extravagance…and we think the right words won’t come? We think we can stay stuck?