We have to face the facts that our lifestyle has changed—at least for a while—and social distancing has become overall physical distancinag. We are discouraged from interacting with any people at all. This has impacted our lives tremendously. In these times when we have to stay cooped up at home, we need to keep our minds occupied and avoid spiralling into negative thoughts and this is where a creative activity can help.
Many studies have shown that writing has a powerful therapeutic effect on the mind. Letting your feelings flow into words brings clarity to muddled thoughts, and also helps to work through difficult emotions. It can be very satisfying and helps to keep the mind calm.
This may be the ideal time to discover our creativity. We are born with a unique personality, and therefore we each have a distinctive way of perceiving the world around us. Personal stories help us uncover our unique voice.
Writing on paper is organic, and ideas flow out from the subconscious mind. If you don’t like putting pen to paper, and would rather type at your computer, it is also fine. The point is to dig deep within and write about those feelings. These are difficult solitary times, and while busy days have slowed down considerably, the mind chatter has increased noticeably.
Some suppressed memories may surface. These memories circle in the mind and while we start dwelling on them, they create negativity within. Sometimes we cannot understand a lingering uneasy feeling. Describing this particular emotion, in words, can help to pinpoint the feeling and analyse where it stems from.
Fears and doubts tend to trouble the mind during these tense times, writing about the actual fear, can diminish its effect.Make writing a soothing experience, a kind of letter to God, or a Divine deity that you feel connected to.
Even if you are struggling with a problem, expressing it in words helps to find answers. The mind becomes lighter, and feelings become less heavy. Detaching is another advantage with writing. The negativity is described in words on paper, and in a way we are letting go, so that we can move on with the day.
Write in a flow, without judgement, and you will feel a certain sense of release. Read what you have written, it will help to understand your own psychological landscape. In this self-reflective process of writing, you will discover a spiritual aspect too. As more of your thoughts are written, you will notice certain patterns in the way you think, behave or react to different situations or people. This kind of self-awareness is important to guide and recondition our thinking, to be able to handle difficult issues and feelings in life.
There may be times when you sit down to write and may feel low, or distracted, or uninspired. Especially if you are missing someone close to you. Then it would help to write down the qualities of the person, and how they make you feel, and all the things you would do with them after the lockdown is over. This process helps to lift the mood, and change the way of thinking.
We are so interconnected with our family and relatives, and suddenly not being able to be physically close to them is unnerving. Especially we would miss the warm hug of our parents or a relative or a coffee chat with a close friend. We interact through our personal energies, this form of connection is so vital to our well-being. Writing down those warm loving thoughts as if you are chatting with them, is also another way to change a negative mindset to optimistic, knowing that you will meet them soon.
Learning to write is not difficult, but it is the practice that is important, and making a regular habit of it. Some people have a notebook where they jot down their thoughts every night. It helps to reflect on how the day has passed and how you were able to handle it. Often we forget to be kind to our selves, self-care is important to feel that inner sense of contentment. During these tough times, write down what you appreciate about yourself. It could be the ability to be flexible, to keep calm, and to handle the responsibilities.
In these unprecedented times we need to keep in mind that change is permanent and this too shall pass. Adapting to change, and not letting it get to you is important. The negative mindset can be overcome by recalling the cheerful times, and by writing about those wonderful moments, which will come again.
Writing is a short-cut to discover our inner realm, which is vast and rich with experience, and which gives us ways to develop our wisdom. In life, every experience teaches us a lesson. The lockdown is no different. So let us take the lessons of isolation to transform to a better-quality life, and maybe even write about this experience.
Shobha Nihalani is the author of a variety of books—from thrillers, murder mysteries to spiritual
The Process of Self-discovery
Writing on paper is organic, and ideas flow out from the subconscious mind. Typing at your computer is also fine.
Fears and doubts tend to trouble the mind during these tense times, writing about the actual fear can diminish its effect.
Make writing a soothing experience, a kind of letter to God, or a Divine deity that you feel connected to.
Write in a flow, without judgement, and you will feel a certain sense of release.
Learning to write is not difficult, but it is the practice that is important, and making a regular habit of it.
Write down what you appreciate about yourself.