Why write?

December 4, 2015

 

 

“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call fate."           

 

       ~ Carl Jung

 

“Why write?” is the ever present question I’m faced with when suggesting it to a client. Followed by “Write what?”  “Anything,” I’ll say.  

 

In my response, I’m hoping, to give my client permission to literally write anything. Sometimes it works. Over time, I’ve realized the simple suggestion or instruction to write may not actually be so simple. Or rather, simple is not necessarily easy. 

 

As implied by Jung’s quote, our unconscious mind is powerful, directing our lives without our knowledge, unless we access it. So how is this done? One answer is to write, or to engage in any creative endeavor (drawing, painting, knitting, creating, talking, and more). Despite what many of us believe, an advantage of writing is that we all can all do it. Since we have already learned the needed skills to do so by the time we are 5 years old. Ironically our continued “learning” of writing teaches us there are “musts” “rights” “wrongs” “rules” which, although aimed to help us improve our writing, also aids in developing our inner critic. That voice and dialogue which questions how well we write. Yet no matter how well we we do it, assess our handwriting (or typing ability), or how skillful we are with grammar (not that any of those things matter with this type of writiting), writing is an amazing way to access what we don’t otherwise see, hear, or know about ourselves.  Which is merely the beginning.  Writing also offers a place to put our conscious thoughts, worries, anxieties, hopes, dreams, complaints, plans, and this list is never ending.  It gives us space, opening up the possibility of a new perspective, another alternative, a change in the story.  And our stories, as are our memories, are constantly changing. And all of this, the web of thoughts, memories, emotions, feelings, and right down to the physical structure of our neurons and neural pathways, make up our realities.

 

So, why write?  Because it is our hope for change, hope to evolve, hope to let go, and for the sake of hope itself.  Pick up your pen and paper (or tablet, computer, smartphone) and write!  Start anywhere and begin to discover what is inside of you.

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