As a way to reduce screen time, I often close my laptop, pull out a notebook and spend time filling up a blank page the old fashioned way.
My writing process and what I write feel different when I do this.
I’m not googling anything when distracted. I’m not looking through a multitude of open tabs to concurrently work on other unrelated tasks. Surprisingly, even the angle of my pen and the speed with which I write creates a uniquely different and more thoughtful experience. It is not that I never write with pen and paper – I typically don’t write with pen and paper with all my devices shut off!
This particularly slower, distraction-free process for me where I can see what I have crossed out rather than deleted feels more personal and drives different kinds of ideas. I do think that there can be more time and the mind space for originality when you remove all the distractions, physically put pen to paper and slow down just a little.
I also tend to look out at nature through a window when I’m thinking while writing on paper which I don’t do quite as often when on my laptop. Observing birds when they gently land on a tree branch gives me pause and frequently a change in perspective.
I realize the irony of this – who knew we could become so dependent on electronic devices that writing solely with pen and paper would merit a post?!?!! Maybe decades(or years?) from now when newer technology emerges, people will reminisce about touch screens and keyboards…
Do you feel that if you were to unplug from all your devices and just write on a piece of paper that you’d write differently, more creatively and have more originality or would you miss your device so much that you wouldn’t be able to write as easily?