Handwriting versus Computer “Input-ing”

March 28, 2013

The advent of so much of our world being online has stripped us of our writing skills. I do find it’s much harder to write these days; plus, when I’m trying to write creatively (poetry, blogs, etc) my words flow faster than I can write. That being said, there is a documented connection between the hand-written words and your heart and brain. If you want to write with passion, the best way to do it is is to hand-write it. Then, if you must, re-create it in your computer.

It’s better for learning :: One of the most effective ways to study and retain new information is to rewrite your notes by hand. That’s because putting ink to paper stimulates a part of the brain called the Reticular Activating Center, or the RAS. The RAS acts as a filter for everything your brain needs to process, giving more importance to the stuff that you’re actively focusing on that moment.”

It makes you a better writer :: Many famous authors opt for the meticulousness of writing by hand over the utility of a typewriter or computer. There are countless articles written about authors who prefer hand-writing over the keyboard process. To be honest, it DOES make a complete connection between your thoughts and your hands, allowing the words to form in a controlled and coherent fashion. Typing on a keyboard is a “stream of consciousness” process. One that might be efficient at the moment, but later reading of that prose makes you think “did I really write that?”

It prevents you from being distracted :: Admit it. You know your computer (or your laptop or your iPad or, yes, even your phone) is a time-sucking portal to cute videos, live streams of foster kittens, and the ever-present Facebook. The internet isn’t bad. In 2012, neuroscientists even suggested that taking five-minute breaks to browse Tumblr or BuzzFeed could make you a more productive worker. That tiny disclaimer being stated, there’s something to be said for the elegant simplicity of having only a pen and paper in front of you.

It keeps your brain sharp as you get older :: Writing longhand is a workout for your brain. The act of writing engages your motor-skills, memory, and is good cognitive exercise for people who want to keep their minds sharp as they age.

And you thought journaling was a wasted effort….


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