Tuesday 27 January 2015

A Writing Exercise and Some Thoughts on Travel

Yesterday we had our second East Midlands Lapidus Therapeutic Writing Day. We seem to have hit on a winning formula here because the day was every bit as enjoyable, stimulating and worthwhile as was the first one.

I thought I’d share with you a little bit about one of the writing exercises that we did. It is something that anyone can try and is amazingly powerful, but to get the most out of it you’d need to grab a pencil and paper now, read the following instructions, do about 15 minutes of rapid writing and then return to my blog to read how I got on. If you linger to think about it then the spontaneity will be lost.

I shall pause now while you get yourself equipped.

Ok, the task is to write a letter (unsent) to thank someone from your past, someone who has had a significant effect on you, who has influenced you and maybe your life.

A second pause while you go and do it.

We didn’t discuss this exercise in any way before we started and yet we all chose a strong-minded woman to ‘receive’ our letters. I chose my Great Aunt who I’ve talked about here before so I won’t go into the details. I will, however, say that as an outcome of that writing exercise I was able to see how much more satisfied that generation were with ‘their lot’ than we are today. Is it because they had to fight to survive? In my Great Aunt’s case it was not only near starvation and subsequent immigration from Latvia in the early 20th century but also evacuation during the 2nd World War leaving the security of a Jewish, Yiddish-speaking environment for the life of a foreigner in Leicester, yet she never appeared to be dissatisfied. I feel truly humbled at that realisation.

Finally a note about the ups and downs of travelling: The session yesterday was in Melton Mowbray which is only about 17 miles from home but I made the decision to take the train rather than drive. (If I had a pound for every wrong decision I’ve made in my life I’d be rich indeed.) 

The bus journey from my house to the train station took twice as long as the train journey from Leicester station to Melton Mowbray. (The journey to the train station normally takes about 5 minutes.) It was an extremely frustrating journey. 

Having said that, travelling by train has advantages over driving. You meet interesting people, are able to watch the world in a voyeuristic way and arrive without shoulders glued to ears! (My usual position after driving unfamiliar routes – yes I know! That’s so ‘girlie’!)

Did you do the writing exercise? 
How did it go? 
Have you any such writing exercises you could share?