The Power of Writing
I'm often struck by the power of writing to help me reflect and uncover new possibilities. I frequently use writing as I attempt to reconcile situations that are confused, unclear or complex. And I particularly like intuitive writing - it's an even more direct route to our internal wisdom. Let's consider the benefits of using writing during the problem-solving process:
- Writing makes the invisible visible. At any one time, you have myriad thoughts, ideas and insights lodged in your mind, waiting to be released. Writing is one way to let your thoughts flow, to take you wherever you need to go.
- Writing helps you put aside your internal censor. It's so important to put aside any self-judgment when you begin to write. Refrain from judging how "well" you're writing or the ideas that show up on the paper. Instead write to think, write for the fun of it, write to relieve confusion. Sometimes the thinking mind can't access what the writing mind can.
- Writing is a process of reflective thinking or self-observation. It puts you in touch with emotions or thoughts you might not be aware of. Plunging into a problem on paper, you may suddenly see a solution clearly.
- Writing is a form of creativity, and creativity is one of the best antidotes to mental or emotional confusion and burn-out. When you feel like you've thought a problem to death, stop thinking. Turn to creativity and engage the right side of your brain. And allow the answers to come to you.
Try this exercise: Intuitive Writing
Find a quiet place and a 15-20 minute block of time. Sit down with a sheet of paper and a favorite pen or pencil. Think of an important question you'd like the answer to. The question can be about anything - the sky is the limit.
Clear your mind of everything but the question itself. Write out your question on the paper. And let your hand - NOT your head - begin to form an answer. This is an exercise in intuitively connecting with yourself. You will begin to see that "thinking" of an answer is not always the most effective way to gather information.
Suspend your judgment about your answer. Let yourself go! Let your creativity and intuitive sense answer the question for you.
If this is a new way of thinking for you, this intuitive state of being may feel uncomfortable or awkward. Let yourself feel uncomfortable and give yourself the space to practice the exercise a few times. It will become more familiar and you will begin to see RESULTS! Some people find that they hone this intuitive approach more quickly and comfortably when they write for 15 minutes each day for a week or two.
Why does intuitive writing work?
When you attempt to solve a problem or find an answer to a question, much of your thought process is based on past experiences, negativity and your unconscious or conscious belief systems about yourself and the world. These can hinder your ability to identify the wide range of options and choices available to you. Intuitive writing taps into the information that lies below the surface of your conscious thought.
One client shared this example of her success with intuitive writing. In the process of overcoming a fear of speaking in public, she joined a local speaking club and was about to give her first speech. As the date of the speech grew closer, she prepared by sitting down for brief intuitive writing sessions.
She would ask herself questions such as, "Will my speech go well?" She repeatedly received affirmative answers to these questions. She was able to give her speech with much more confidence, and with the understanding that her fear was just simply fear - ungrounded in any reality.
Next time you are stuck or searching for the answer to an important question, give writing a try. Move past any confusion or resistance you feel by putting pen to paper. Observe your thoughts, emotions and desires on paper - let your own unique brilliance emerge! By cultivating a regular writing habit, you'll gain access to new parts of yourself and tap into your creativity and intuition - the best problem solvers of all.
Claudette Rowley, coach and author, helps professionals identify and pursue their true purpose and calling in life. Learn more at Claudette Rowley.com.