When I’m under pressure, with a million things whizzing around my brain, sometimes I just need to press pause. I crave a clear mind. I yearn to reset myself. This writing activity helps me to do both.
Follow the steps below and by the end you’ll have created your own poem.
Here’s what you do:
1. Release your thoughts onto the page
2. Choose your favourite phrases from your ‘release’ writing
3. Choose a positive affirmation
4. Shape your favourite phrases into a poem with a positive affirmation at the end of each verse
Release your thoughts onto the page
The aim here is to write non-stop for at least two minutes. Write whatever comes into your mind. It can be absolutely anything. No one else needs to see what you write here; there will be no judgement. Spelling, grammar and punctuation are not important, so you can write your words in whatever way comes naturally. Try to keep on writing no matter what. If you run out of things to say just repeat the last phrase you wrote – or any phrase of your choice – over and over until your mind comes unstuck. When you have finished, take a few deep breaths and ease any tension that might have crept into your body.
Choose your favourite phrases from your ‘release’ writing
Look back over the writing you have just done. How did it make you feel? Underline any phrases that jump out as interesting, funny, curious or significant to you in some way. They can be just a few words each or they can be whole sentences. You will use some or all of these in your final poem.
Choose a positive affirmation
How would you like to feel when you walk away from this writing activity? Below is a selection of phrases. They may not be how you feel right now, but perhaps one of them describes how you would like to feel. Pick out the phrase that most resonates with you and write it down:
I am relaxed
I am letting go
I am energised
I am calm
I am happy
I am free
I am at peace
I am good enough
I am appreciated
I am loved
Shape your favourite phrases into a poem with a positive affirmation at the end of each verse
Take another look at your ‘release’ writing and the phrases you have underlined. Do you want to include them all in your final poem? What order will you put them in? Have a think about whether they will work well being split into separate verses or whether they will all flow on from each other, one after the after, in a single verse.
Start to write down your phrases in an order and form that feels most natural. At the end of each verse, include your positive affirmation. As you go, you might like to add extra words or take words away if it feels appropriate. You might decide to add in whole new phrases. Go wherever your mind takes you.
Once your phrases and affirmations are on the page, you will have created a poem. Read it over. Do you like the way it flows? If there are any lines that don’t feel quite right, have a think about words that could be changed, added or removed. You might even like to swap some lines around. Or you might want to leave your poem exactly as it is. Congratulations! You have nourished yourself with a creative activity today.
A note on the positive affirmations…
The list of positive affirmations above includes phrases that I find helpful, but you may wish to add your own to the list. When creating your own positive affirmation, remember to use the first person and the present tense (‘I am…’ or ‘I feel…’) to give your affirmations potency. Beyond that, stay positive and listen to your intuition.
Explore my Write to Relax series for more writing ideas and tips.