This is where it all began, people.
If it weren’t for Dr. Heller at Roanoke College introducing me to G. Lynn Nelson’s Writing and Being, this blog would not exist.
I highly recommend checking out his book as one of the first steps in the journaling-writing-healing process.
For “Tools and Topics” Tuesdays I’d like to offer different journaling techniques to lead you on your process of writing and healing. Today’s topic is called “Fists into Flowers,” from Writing and Being, page 45.
Breathe deeply, fully.
Look within for what feels like a fist, tight and clenched. Your “fist” maybe something immediate: a test you are worried about, an argument you had yesterday, a feeling of anxiety about something you must do.
Or it may be a “fist” you have been carrying inside you for a long time: a chronic tightness from old anger, a “holding on” to the pain of a long lost love, a general frustration with your job.
Write about it in your journal. Begin to let go of this clenched fist by putting it in your journal. As you do this, do not write answers, do not analyze, do not judge. Only see and say. In gentleness, take this “tightness” out of your inner feelings and put it in your journal as best you can at this time. Do this for about five minutes, writing steadily, writing whatever comes to you in relation to the fist you are focusing on.
Focus again on your breathing.
Return to your journal and write again. Once again, write steadily and freely for another five minutes or so, letting pour out whatever needs to come. Some fists open easily and are quickly gone. Others, when they open, release a torrent of strong feelings they have been clutching. Whatever happens for you, watch it and stay with it. Go back and forth, from your writing to your breathing, as many times as you need in relation to this particular fist. If you tire, leave it and come back another day.
Your journal and your breathing, your writing and your being, work hand in hand, each helping the other. Use this exercise often, in relation to specific issues and simply as a regular writing-relaxation exercise. As you do it, you will notice your writing and your breathing and your being becoming lighter and freer.
Photo by photojournalism student, Emily Ford