Medium Journaling is Minimalism

Why Medium got me back to writing.

June 26, 2017. 3 min read. Minimalism.

Journaling is one of the most positive creative actions and skills that you can develop. Aside from the many health benefits, there’s no job for which learning how to communicate better won’t be helpful.

What Should You Keep a Journal?

The reasons for journaling span personal, professional, growing your creative side, your communication skills and more.

  • Cathartic relief of stress
  • Work through your ideas to completion
  • Keeps a track record of your growth to reflect on
  • Can be used to keep yourself accountable
  • Offers many different options for growth: writing, design, persuasive, marketing, style
  • It’s a productive creative outlet when you’re in a rut
  • The more you write, the easier it gets
  • You’ll get better at processing your thoughts to completion
  • You can develop a stronger opinion

The reasons go on and on and are different for everyone.

Benjamin P. Hardy wrote up a great post that dives into some reasons for journaling better than anything I’ve read on the subject.

Find a Platform

It doesn’t matter, really. Find the one that works best for you. For me, that’s changed many times over the years. I love LiveJournal, built my own blog platform in PHP, tried Blogger, switched to WordPress, Jekyll, OctoPress, tried Ghost. My personal blog is still running MiddleMan.

There’s one thing that all of these previous sites shared, and that’s the ability for me to go down rabbit holes of customization that was time I wasn’t writing. This is why I ended up writing in Evernote for the past few years, to have an outlet that I didn’t have to worry about getting distracted on.

Lack of Features as a Feature

There’s a lot of things you can’t do on Medium. It’s possible to see these and rule out

  • Customize the HTML
  • Customize the CSS
  • Write custom JavaScript
  • Have any kind of ads
  • Control the Medium header
  • Control the Medium footer
  • Limited interactions for the reader

Even still, you can use your own domain, add Google Analytics and enjoy some of the network effects of having your writing discoverable by Medium members while not needing to worry about SEO — which has been optimized for you.

Medium isn’t going to work for everything. My wife’s food blog, forkful.net, which focuses on the food scene here in Orlando, Florida, isn’t going to be a great candidate for Medium — neither would other hyper-local blogs.

Likewise, if your top goal in blogging is to make money, you’ll likely want greater control of your medium. If writing itself is your main goal, Medium is an amazing tool.

Skip Local, Write in Production

As a developer, creating a blog can involve a great deal of local customization. Designing a WordPress theme alone is done fastest when you set up PHP/MySQL and Apache. Being able to skip that process and go immediately to writing keeps the focus on content.

Enter Medium

Of all the platforms and mediums I’ve tried, Medium has had the most instant gratification of anywhere so far. I migrated this blog from WordPress, customized it, fixed inconsistencies in my posts and created a new post in an evening.

This post may sound like an ad to join Medium and post, but really I’m just excited to be writing again. If you’re thinking about writing, just do it. Create a medium blog and write!

If you have any questions about setting one up, the domain process or anything else, feel free to ask! I’m always down for helping.

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