Write About It - How to overcome a writing block
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Write About It - How to overcome a writing block

Admission Counselling :
  • Written by UnivAdmitHelp
  • Category: Mentoring
  • Published on 20 Jan 2020

Write better - applications, essays for admissions, reports, creative thought


Writing to understand yourself

Writing well is important most of the time, but writing well for admission essays and applications, that is crucial! Are you in a confused state, or at an important crossroad, with myriad thoughts running through your head? It’s as if a knot has been tied in your head, with many strands of thoughts tying themselves up into a dilemma. What should you do next? 

You could talk to someone, and it would help you see the options available for you. You could also try to get to know your own self, and that might solve the confusion about what you really want. In order to do that, take a step back and write about it. Yes. Write. The primary reason for writing anything is to communicate with others, to stimulate interest or action from the reader. But writing to understand helps helps you to reflect on your experiences and learn from them.


Writing as a tool to gain clarity

Much has been written about clarity of thought. But how can you obtain that clarity of thought? The one thing that has always helped is writing. Writing (typing or writing) cultivates the ability to observe our thoughts and feelings. It takes the form of introspection channeled into words. Some advice from a poet laureate, C Day-Lewis:

First, I do not sit down at my desk to put into verse something that is already clear in my mind. If it were clear in my mind, I should have no incentive or need to write about it. We do not write in order to be understood; we write in order to understand.


Writing as a tool to organize your thoughts

If you try to pen down your thoughts, they begin to take shape. Bullet points, notes, or run-on paragraphs,  whatever your form your output is, a sense of organization gives better shape to your scatterd thoughts. Writing is like a train, thoughts are like wagons. Developing each thought can give detail to each wagon, but you have to string the thoughts into a cohesive form in order to have a working train of thought. Fleshing out the ideas in writing also gives you control over them and allows you to catch the flaws in your reasoning. 


Writing to overcome the writer’s block

Reams of writing have been dedicated to the writer’s block, but the darned blinking cursor on a blank page can pull the rug from under your feet and dissolve those well planned thoughts. What do you do at such a moment?

You could of course choose to go longform, thereby changing your demon from blinking cursor to empty sheet of paper. As we have all heard, writing by hand involves all aspects of you in the moment. There is focus on the paper. The effort made while writing allows your mind time to process your thoughts. 

The last rounds of college applications require a copious number of long answers and essays. A good control over the writing process provides a great support to the applicant. Often, writing in order to complete an application comes only after you have written to clear your confusion, found a clear path, and reached a decision. 

Practically speaking

Here are a few activities that you can engage in, and these will surely help you gain better perspective:

    • Make a list of your options
    • Flesh them out in detail
    • Defend your choice in a 200 word paragraph. You will see how it clarifies your thoughts.
    • Write a description of yourself, but in the future. What do you see in the mirror?

Like a journal, this writing is for you only: no one will read what you write. The aim is to gain better knowledge of where you are headed, and for that, you don't need great grammar, just something to write with.


Further reading:

Why you need a story for your SOP

Know how you learn

The honest answer to your University Essay Questions