The wo/man who doesn’t write has no advantage over the wo/man who can’t.
Those of us who are lucky enough to be literate can take writing for granted. It has become so everyday we forget that writing is magic, and magic of a very advanced kind.
These simple dark marks on a light page manage to hold millennia of information, and knowledge, and opinion, and emotion, and entertainment, and inspiration, all capable of being communicated to each other across time and space.
As a human breakthrough, the invention of writing ranks with that of fire. Writing is, actually, the uniquely human achievement. Dolphins, birds and other species can communicate; only we write.
In school, we are taught to write to communicate with others – our teachers and examiners, mainly – but a number of psychologists, scientists, medics, behaviour specialists, healers and educators are increasingly interested in the power of writing when we use it to communicate with ourselves.
The most important thing about f-r-e-e-writing is to just do it.
And, in the words of the mystic poet and saint of India, Kabir, “wherever you are is the entry point”.
How to F-r-e-e-Write
The main difference between Free-Writing as I teach it and other journalling methods you may have encountered is speed. The f in f-r-e-e stands for fast.; when free-writing, we always write as fast as we can.
When f-r-e-e-writing, we always write as fast as we can.
There are other differences too, some gross, some subtle. If you’ve never done it before, or if you haven’t done it for some time, or if you’ve done a different writing-for-self method, like Julia Cameron’s “morning pages” or Natalie Goldberg’s “writing practice”, begin again. Try it and see how you go.
The most important thing is not what method you use but that you just do it.
For F-R-E-E-Writing to work its magic, it has to be experienced.
Don’t content yourself with reading about it, or telling yourself you did something similar before, so you know all about it. The simple addition of speed is enough to change the experience radically for most people.