The Daily Rituals that Will Change Your Writing (and Your Life)

Cover detail of Getting Back to Happy by Marc and Angel Chernoff

Editor's Note:

Marc and Angel Chernoff are the authors of the popular blog Marc & Angel Hack Life. They have become go-to voices in the area of personal development, reaching tens of thousands of fans each day with their fresh and relatable insights. Their book, Getting Back to Happy, reveals their strategies for changing thought patterns and daily habits to bounce back from tough times.

“What tips can you give me?”

That’s a question we’ve been asked several times in the past week. Most of the people asking are friends and peers who, like us, are also nonfiction self-help authors. Why are they asking? Because we just released a new book, Getting Back to Happy, and it became an instant New York Times bestseller.

While there are no one-size-fits-all tips to give, writing every single day, consistently, for 10 years straight, through thick and thin, is one of the key rituals that made writing our bestseller possible. Most of our friends and peers don’t write every single day, because most of us don’t do anything consistently. We know from experience — we’ve been there ourselves in the past, too. But, we’ve since learned that consistency is everything.

Here are some things to ask yourself and keep in mind along the way.

Are you willing to spend a little time every day, (like most people won’t), so you can spend the better part of your life like most people can’t?

Think about that question for a moment. Let it sink in. You ultimately create and become what you repeatedly do.

And isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when you look back everything is different? That’s the power of daily rituals.

Now, it’s time think about your rituals — your writing rituals — the little things you do every day that make you a writer.

Because these little things define your writing career.

These little things define YOU.

All the results you achieve — the articles, the essays, the books — come from these little things.

Regardless of your unique talents, knowledge, and circumstances, or how you define success as a writer, you don’t suddenly become successful as a writer. You become successful over time based on your rituals.

So, what do your daily writing rituals look like?

You really have to sort this out, and get consistent! Because failure occurs in the same way. All your little daily failures (those that you don’t learn and grow from) come together and cause you to fail. Think in terms of running a business…

  • You keep failing to check the books.
  • You keep failing to make the calls.
  • You keep failing to listen to your customers.
  • You keep failing to innovate.
  • You keep failing to do the little things that need to be done.

Then one day you wake up and your business has failed. It was all the little things you did or didn’t do on a daily basis — your rituals — not just one inexplicable, catastrophic event.

Again, think about how this relates to your writing.

Your writing is your “business!”

And your rituals make or break you, gradually (that’s why rituals are a key focal point of Getting Back to Happy).

Above all, what you need to remember is that nothing will change with your writing trajectory — you will experience little growth — unless you make daily writing rituals that reinforce what you hope to achieve. Believe us, over the past decade we have successfully worked with hundreds of course students and live event attendees from around the world who were struggling to achieve things. This strategy of consistency is well-tested.

If you’re not willing to make it a daily ritual, then you don’t really want to write that bestseller as much as you say you do — you don’t really want to achieve that “important” goal. You only like the idea of being a writer, an author, a bestseller, etc. You don’t actually want to do it, every day.

But if you DO want it as much as you say you do, it’s time to build the right daily rituals for yourself. It’s time to get consistent. It’s time to start today.