This morning when I sat down write for twenty minutes, as I do each morning, what came out didn’t feel like something I wanted to publish.
It wasn’t so personal that I couldn’t contemplate sharing it, but it also didn’t feel like it would be so useful to you as it was to me.
Still it was a reminder that I write for myself as well as for you. I am part of my audience.
Do you ever write down your thoughts?
Before I began to publish this blog on a daily basis, I had developed a practice of writing for 20 minutes each morning. Because it was only for me, it didn’t have to be “good” or “polished” – or even coherent.
But it did something.
Day after day, I sat down and poured my thoughts out, typing letters to forms words, then sentences, then paragraphs. I became more aware of the ideas living in my head and my ability to express them (or lack thereof).
In other words, I developed a regular practice of exposing a little bit of my insides to the outside light of day.
Each time, I tested out the experience of becoming a little more vulnerable just a little bit more.
In fact, my words weren’t entirely private. From the beginning, I sent what I wrote to my partner each day.
It had the effect of unfolding new dialogue between us. We discovered stories we hadn’t told each other yet, thoughts about each other we hadn’t yet expressed, connections we didn’t previously know that we had.
So, I discovered that along with vulnerability came the opportunity for connection.
Today, what I wrote was mostly for my partner and I, but I will share just a few lines from this morning that may usefully provoke you.
As you read on, you might consider the following questions:
Are there any repeating themes of your daily mental narrative that you normally keep to yourself?
Why do you keep them to yourself – are you sure that there is no one who could understand or care?
Can you imagine experimenting with writing down your thoughts each morning or evening for 10-20 minutes, just to see what unfolds?
OK, here are a couple excerpts from what I wrote this morning, for whatever they are worth:
“Dating with kids,” we used to say to each other, making a face.
Juggling love and responsibilities.
The fantasy used to be that the responsibilities would somehow disappear and the road would open to just love and nothing but love.
If only there was an endless vacation for lovers!
Then came the first glimmers that our kids could enjoy each other’s company. Sometimes they even get excited about the idea of us getting married, talking about wedding dresses and how they’ll be siblings.
A new fantasy appeared, less fantastic, more realistic, where we build a new family, and figure out all the stuff that has to be figured out.
We love each other – more than most people love each other (as far as we can tell).
We think that we must have some kind of superpower. We just have to figure out how to bottle it.
Despite all the complications, some things can become very easy. Whatever twists and turns in our path, we’ve always loved each other enough to find our way.
This has something to do with our superpower, I think.
There’s something there for us to look at, perhaps – the way that love makes us always take an extra moment to resolve contradictions and find a better way.
This Sunday, February 10, I’m co-hosting a workshop in DC with the choreographer Nancy Havlik, that has everything to do with how we can discover more comfort in the vulnerable act of showing more of our insides to the outside world.
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