Photograph by Jamie Hayes
What do I do when I don't feel like writing? I write about it.
I'm writing this particular article because I can't seem to focus on the one I think I should be writing.
I can't quite find the space to allow my creativity through, yet anytime I feel listless or restless I turn to writing. It makes me feel better even when I don't write what makes any sense. I also write when I am bursting with excitement and gratitude. Logic can be far from these writings too.
The process itself of writing is what appeals to me, I believe it helps me gain clarity when my emotions are all over the place. It's not always the clarity of 'improved understanding', sometimes I get that but it's more like the clarity of space in my heart, the feeling at ease.
Writing is a conscious process of connecting with myself and the present moment. It is a grounding practice for me.
When I write, I get into a contemplative state and allow the "process" to happen. By process I mean the mental and emotional happenings going on within my being and 'allowing' is observing or consciously experiencing what is going on inside. The writing sort of anchors me in the process, like it grounds me, it gives me something to do.
In the past I thought I had to write in a particular way, at a particular time, be specific or be clear. Yes, there are times when I write with some structure, to problem solve or with a goal in mind. I also understand that I can be as flexible as I want to be. Writing in an emotional process is about awareness and connection with myself.
I also don't believe I need to be good at writing to make this connection because writing incomplete sentences, or just single words, or even scribbles have all been valid in my experience. In any case, not everything can be captured or needs to be captured in writing. I like to think of this as mindfulness, it's all about observing what is.
Meditating is a wonderful practice for many people but for others it can be quite a challenge.
A mindfulness practice like writing may suit some people better. Also, sometimes the mind and body need some kind of activity to be occupied with while our awareness is allowed to focus. A mindfulness practice could be any 'activity' that brings us to this present moment.
I decided to write this on my blog because it highlights a very helpful practice called journalling.
A lot of people may be familiar with this already or maybe not. There are many different ways to Journal. It is easy and requires very little effort to start. All you need is a pencil and paper or your device. Where, how, what you write or write on, is a matter of personal preference.
However, some techniques provide guidelines which many find very useful. You'll know what's best for you if it feels good doing it. I have give a peek into my personal experience of what it's like for me, it may be worthwhile to find out more about journaling. In general, it's a practice of observing ones experience through writing.
It's also important to relax. All I am doing in my writing is observing, I know I can't go wrong. Self judgement or thinking that what I am experiencing is wrong or that I do not want what I am experiencing usually increases my agitation. Actively relaxing my whole being, I focus on how I am feeling in my body, particularly in my chest area where I experience my tension. I Breathe deeply, relax and reach for ease, its always there.
One significant challenge I had to sort out for myself before engaging in journaling is the matter of privacy. I needed to feel that my self expression on paper will not be 'violated' by prying eyes. Sometimes, the fear of violation of privacy may not necessarily be in our external environment but an internal fear or lack of trust. External or internal, feeling safe is a priority that each of us need to determine for ourselves.
So, with the combination of a contemplative state, a desire to allow what is and just observe, my pen and paper (or device), I allow my connectedness with myself. In my connectedness I am at peace.
We all have access to peace. We just need to identify our most effective means.
Next time you feel restless or anything less than your best self why not try journalling, you might be pleasantly surprised.
Have any questions for me? Please send your email to firstname.lastname@example.org