For many people, the word mantra often conjures up the image of a yogi in the lotus position sitting beside a bodhi tree humming some sort of senseless gibberish. But a mantra can be so much more if you allow it to be. It can even help you become a better blogger.
What is a mantra?
For the purpose of this post, we will define a mantra as a syllable, sound or word that is repeated to aid in concentration and raise awareness. Normally an integral part of spiritual movements, I would like to humbly suggest that you try incorporating a mantra into your blogging practice.
Why choose a blogging mantra?
A blogging mantra allows you to take a word/sound and make it symbolize something. For example, the mantra I’ve used for years is “Sila.” It’s a word with origins in Sanskrit that means ethics, honesty, and rightness. By repeating this word in my head while writing, I am constantly reminding myself that the words I write have power; the power to heal, help or hurt – the choice is mine. I also use “Sila” as a reminder to breathe. Even though our bodies automagically know how to regulate the level of Oxygen we need to be taking in, I often find myself mucking up a perfectly good process. I use my mantra as a reminder to inhale and exhale. This keeps my mind clear and fresh, in turn, helping my writing.
How to find a blogging mantra.
For me, this was a trial and error process. I tried several different words and phrases. Months later, I found myself naturally coming back to “Sila.” There’s something beautiful about the way it flows in my mind and off the tongue. I encourage you to try your own. Search for a word that means something to you. Feel free to borrow my mantra, I just ask that you leave it on the stoop for others to use.
Using your blogging mantra in practice.
I can write dozens of blog posts without ever “leaning” on my mantra. During other stretches of time, I’ll find myself repeating the mantra dozens of times during a single post. I use the mantra to help me get past short bouts of writer’s block. I’ll also use it to question myself on content. Do these words represent the person I am? Will they bring harm to others? It’s amazing how four simple letters can mean so much.
Your mileage might vary. Personally, I’ve gotten far more out of “Sila” than I ever could have imagined. I hope you’ll consider giving it a try. Choose your mantra, live with it for a few weeks and then come back and let us know how it worked out. I’ll be here ready to help in any way I can.
Author: Andrew G. Rosen
After working for FOX News and MTV Networks, Andrew G. Rosen founded Jobacle.com, a career advice and employment news blog. He is also the author of The Exit Guide: How to Leave a Job the Right Way.