the maddening paradox about writingOctober 28, 2010
the more i write, the more i need to write. i find this fact profoundly liberating and maddening.
at my most disciplined, i write 3 pages first thing every morning…a shotgun prose-free, stream of consciousness brain dump to clear my head and make way for my day.
for me, this writing ritual is the perfect union of intention, attention and energy. there’s something about the physical act of writing out my thoughts, seeing them march across the page in my own handwriting, that helps move them through me. i tried writing these “morning pages,” as julia cameron calls them, on the computer, but because of the speed of typing, i find i don’t have time to process what i’m saying before moving on to the next topic. hand writing these pages slows me down, feels more deliberate, and allows time for more careful consideration.
getting my thoughts down and out on the page brings my life into focus. i see more clearly what i’m struggling with, what i need to let go of, where i want to go and how i want to get there. and these pages pave the way for me to imagine possibilities and recognize opportunities.
but helpful as writing is, i feel like i’ve developed a dependence on it that at times verges on debilitating. i like to think i’m a together enough person to manage my life affairs on my own. but truth is, when i don’t write, it shows—in the quality of presence i bring to my work and my relationships. so now i know, i owe it to myself, and to the people in my life, to make the time to write every day.
i don’t always choose it. but whenever i do, i’m amply rewarded.