Meditation is a way of letting your thoughts run their course, slowly and steadily getting a mild amount of control on one’s way of thinking. Meditation is a technique useful to calm one’s mind and emotions. For me writing is one form of meditation, maybe the best kind suitable for a person like me.
Ever since I was a child I started writing diaries. At that time it was just about being a child, playing with my thoughts and memories. I still have a diary at home which has all photographs of Harry Potter movies and books and my tons of thoughts around it. At one moment in my life that was huge. If it wasn’t for that diary I wouldn’t remember the vividness of it.
Meanwhile I grew up and realize now that writing is a tough undertaking. Promising oneself to produce one post a week is so tough. The ideas keep running around in one’s head and it becomes so alive you fumble to chose one. The fearful incidents, the happy ones, outside influences, favorites and what not. Unshaped demons in the horizon of that blank page you stare at while you look for almost perfect words to put one after another.
Now writing isn’t as fabulous as it is put on the internet, dramas and movies. In reality writing sucks the blood out of your veins. Not all of us are Neil Gaiman or J K Rowling but who knows with hard work and perseverance you might just be the best you. It doesn’t pay much to write unless you are the rock star of writing world. However, can one get there with time.
After a long day at work writing helps me forget my worries and any demons that are hunting me. Writing is like breathing deep and long. Long enough to feel the oxygen rushing through my mind. I have tried meditation, to be true I get similar feeling while writing and meditation.
During meditation you let go of control and let your thoughts flow like a mad river. Slowly the river of thoughts calms down and you just keep breathing. The clouds of rain clears from your mind as the sun shines on the freshly washed up land. This happens because you are letting your control go and just living in the moments as YOU want to. Writing has the same effect like meditation for me.
Writing as meditation.
According to Neil Gaiman the most terrible thing that a writer goes through is the time spent staring at a blank page as one tries to create something out of thin air.
- Giving time to the Genius, just show up: In her talk Your Elusive Creative Genius writer/author Elizabeth Gilbert talks about how letting our creative self be another genius apart from us is beneficial to us. She also talks about the importance of time to be given to the genius. Daily at a set time for a set time write, just write. It might seem difficult at first but it is possible to do so every morning. waking up early or staying up late, the choice is one’s own.
Also, giving the creative genius a different personality gives us the freedom to be as we are in the face of success and failure alike. Hence, whether you feel like it or not, “Dress up and show up.”
- Embrace uncertainty. Forget expectations and the likes of it: I have lost count of how many times I have cried and felt like a failure when I couldn’t complete a story as I wanted to. Or just that I couldn’t write at all. But in the wake of the last few years I realized that perfection is far from being. Such an achievement in writing or in life is something I don’t want to pursue anymore.
Instead embrace the possibilities that lie in the land of uncertainty. You lose a lot along with your patience and happiness when you give into pressure. So let expectations go, just let the words flow and create a world which might even surprise you. As per my observation any form of art is at it’s best when pressure is off and fun is on.
- Be fierce about your time: Whether we like it or not our time is limited. I remember how I used to spend my time watching unnecessary drama or movies that I have seen before. Just because I am unsure of what to write. Things we do in the name of research. Full day in office I stay available for everything and every work and help everyone (which I realize now isn’t good for them or me professionally). Also that same time I can use to spruce up my resume instead.
So protect your time. Be fierce about it if needed. Writing is teaching me that it is important to set aside time for myself. We always feel the need to do things we are not even asked of. It makes us feel needed or gives us false hope that others will like us more. I say to you, “STOP NOW.” You are as important as anyone else and giving time to yourself is also important. Your job is to like you first. Other’s like is extra
- Lose yourself: Not literally. Remember when you were a kid you just lie on the grass under a tree watching the clouds pass by and not doing anything else? That’s meditation. That kind of meditation is just lost with time. We live in such hurry that we forget to breathe. Writing is similar form of meditation.
When I write I am free. I can breathe and fly like a dragon high above the sky. No amount of meditation can make me as happy as writing does. But I recommend ten minutes of daily meditation for a healthy-happy life. Just breathe and forget about everything else. Stop trying to control your thoughts and just be. The same will seep into your writing sooner or later.