“Repetition is the mother of learning”, says the Latin proverb.
May I challenge this proverb? I think all depends on the context. If we want to learn a poem, it works well. Yet, how often do we want to learn a poem? And how often do we use that learning?
It’s good for the memory you might say, but other habits are also good for memory! Like bouncing back and forth between thinking or speaking in two different languages.
Yet, when it comes to learning a new habit I believe that repetition is not enough. I can see at least two other elements that will enhance the learning: having a good reason why we want to learn and adjusting the learning based on the experience itself.
Repeating something over and over without being motivated, won’t bring the most of that experience (and it’ll feel quite heavy!). Also, without learning what works well and what doesn’t during the each repetition round we cannot improve the learning process (thus affecting the results).
You might wonder why I’m rambling about repetition today. 🙂 Well, I heard several people saying that if you plan to write, you should make it a habit: write at the same time of the day in the same conditions to create a writing habit.
Hey, isn’t writing a creative process?! I have a hard time to believe that creativity will succumb to a habit we’d like to impose on ourselves. It doesn’t flow smoothly when we want. It might respond more positively to certain conditions and structures, but that’s not certain.
Did it ever happen to you to get an idea while you were doing something totally unrelated? (walking, taking a shower, stepping out of what you’re supposed to do, etc). When I take breaks from writing, I get often new ideas about what else I should capture in that chapter … exactly when my focus was on something else! 🙂
And the writing process?
Forget about repetition! I found myself needing to tweak the writing process almost every day, creating the same conditions simply doesn’t work for me. It depends on my mood, energy level, if it’s a sunny day or not, if I want to include more visuals or what phase I’m in (brainstorming, organizing ideas, typing, reviewing, etc). Plus, in this process, I keep discovering aspects of myself less explored before! 🙂 Writing this book becomes more of a self-discovering process than creating a habit of writing. With the title I finally chose, after getting different opinions from over 200 people, I’m pondering the creation of a series of books for introverts. But I’ll follow my mom advice: “Finish this one first!” 🙂
Quick question for you:
What process currently present in your life could benefit from some tweaking, to make it more enjoyable and effective? 🙂
PS 1: Do you know someone with experience in editing books? Since I’ll take the self-publishing path, I’ll need an editor soon for my book.
PS 2: Feedback from Irina, one of my book beta-testers: “I can’t wait to read the following chapters! I totally recognize myself in the introvert challenges you’re describing in chapter 4!”
PS 3: Here’s a draft I’ve created for my book title, which led me thinking about the book series:
Thanks for reading! 🙂