Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Breathe Strategy - Write, Write, Write

I have always loved to write.  I remember my first diary, it was pink with a little key and lock and I loved to see the ink flow across the paper.  I started journaling when I was in Jr. High.  I still have tons of journals that I have filled over the years.  I'm not sure what it is about writing, but I feel that as I write I can get what is in my head out.  I quit writing when I got so busy working full-time, running a home, being a wife and mother and didn't realize at the time how much I missed it.  It wasn't until I started therapy that I started writing again and I don't want to stop this time.

My daughter was teasing me the other day about  how many different writing books I have.  I do have a few, but they each have a different purpose.  I have my everyday journal where I write about my day, what I did and how I felt.  Then I have a book just for writing my releasing process in it (see blog entry "Mistaken Beliefs").  I now have one that I write something in every day to my son who is on a 2 year mission for our church (this one is just temporary until he returns) which later I transfer my daily thoughts to a weekly letter to him.  I have one that I write promptings from prayers in and another one where I write all my Priesthood blessings in.  Finally, I have my "morning pages" note book which is the one that has the most random and emotional healing writings in it.

The "morning pages" idea comes from a book called "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron.  The idea is to connect with your creative self every morning by writing random thoughts and filling three pages.  It doesn't matter what you write, just as long as you open yourself up, let your thoughts flow and free up your mind.  She also has another great idea of an "artist field trip" each week where you go out on your own somewhere that will inspire you which for me is usually a craft store.

I think of writing out my thoughts as like the pensieve in the Harry Potter books, pulling out thoughts and memories and putting them on paper making room in my head for space, to think, to relax, to breathe.

I was talking to a friend the other day and she was telling me that she releases her stress by praying and then writing, writing and writing until everything comes out onto paper.  She said later as she reads what she wrote she can't believe what she was allowing herself to be bothered by.  I think this is a great idea, pray for help to let things go and to find what you really need and then putting it all on paper.

I have another friend that does what she calls an "emotional enema" where she writes what is bothering her on toilet paper and then flushes it.  The idea is to get what is occupying your mind out of your body and doing this makes it easier to let it go.

I don't just write in journals, I write in a planner, I write out lists, plans and schedules.  I don't always stick to those, I just like to get what's in my head out and down on paper so I quit rolling it around in my head over and over.  I love to write, it is my release for stress, pain, sadness, an overloaded brain and so much more.  It also helps me to connect to my emotions which I learned as a child to hold in, writing helps me connect to myself.  So, write, write, write!

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