Positive Talk

Sometimes I just want my writing to give me a big hug. That’s why I love this particular writing prompt. I turn to it when I need a shot of encouragement or a pep talk for the soul.

Here’s what you do:

  1. Choose a kind word or phrase
  2. ‘Free flow’ your thoughts and ideas
  3. Choose a writing form
  4. Write!

Choose a kind word or phrase

Start by asking yourself the question: “What kind words would I like to hear right now?” Sometimes the words might be sitting there in your head, ready and waiting for you to hear them. At other times, they may not come so easily. In those moments, you may have to dig into the recesses of your mind and draw out whatever you can find. Try releasing your thoughts and feelings onto the page in the first instance. Write non-stop for a few minutes. Then see if you can make sense of it all. As an example, the poem below came from my jottings about how my body felt at a particular moment in time. I was aching and tired. My body was crying out for some attention. I realised that the kind words it could do with hearing were: ‘I will care for you’. They led to this haiku:

‘Free flow’ your thoughts and ideas

Once you have found your kind words, write them at the top of the page and jot down any associated words, phrases, thoughts and feelings that come to mind. What images do your kind words conjure up? What do your senses tell you about the words? Make some notes. These will be the basis for your final piece of creative writing.

Some notes…

Sometimes, in my darker moments, it seems hard to find any kind words at all to say to myself. Or I think I’m being kind, but then my writing turns into a rant or a stream of criticism. During those moments, I draw a line under my words so far and then imagine that I’m talking to a family member or close friend. I imagine that they’re in my place and I consider what I would want to say to them. It can be easier to find the right words when thinking about offering them to someone else – and it really does help me to feel better, once I finally say those kind words to myself.

Choose a writing form

Now, it’s time to decide what form your creative piece will take. Will it be a poem, a short story, a letter…? If you’re not sure, take a look at this list of writing forms for inspiration.

My kind words for the poem below were ‘You are enough’:

Write!

At this point, you may wish to get creating straightaway. Or, why not take a look at these writing tips and reminders for an extra helping hand?

Happy writing!


Explore my Write to Relax series for more ideas and inspiration.

2 thoughts on “Positive Talk

  1. During those moments, I draw a line under my words so far and then imagine that I’m talking to a family member or close friend. I imagine that they’re in my place and I consider what I would want to say to them. It can be easier to find the right words when thinking about offering them to someone else – and it really does help me to feel better, once I finally say those kind words to myself.

    Hi Kate,
    I really find these words from your Some Notes, above work well for me.
    I use this when I know I am being hard on myself but cannot get away from it or stop it. I say to myself, what would i say to my good friend if she was telling she was doing this.
    I write what i would say to her and then i write…. Now let me apply that to ME.It is a strategy, a counsellor I was seeing, many years ago told me. She said, and I can still hear her words….Mary you offer a lot of compassion to others, try and offer the same to you, Mary.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Mary. I’m glad the passage resonated with you. Yes, it’s such a useful strategy, like you say. One that’s so worth holding onto! Kate

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