Last night at my Friday Night Writes writing group we did something a little different. At the suggestion of our host, we did an exercise from Julia Cameron's book, The Right to Write. Cameron is usually spot on with her observations and methods of breaking through blocks. Her book Artist's Way has helped me break through some of my personal blocks to being a creative. Of course that doesn't mean I don't back-slide or make u-turns now and then. But when I practice what she preaches, I usually find myself back on the right road.
The exercise was to number a sheet of paper from 1 to 25. Then, as quickly as possible, write down 25 personal wishes you have...no censoring...just what you would wish for at that particular moment. We all did the exercise as directed. As I wrote mine down, I was surprised how many of the wishes were the same old wishes I have been making for nigh onto a half century: to travel, to write more, to read faster with comprehension and up the intake, to exercise more. There were wishes cook creatively more, entertain friends more, find activity support groups that work for me, go to the theatre, the movies, take long baths, on and on. I wished to set solid boundaries and say no when that's what I want to say. I wished to do more artist's dates, work on and complete my languishing memoirs.
As you can see, those are things that I have been wishing for, for what seems like forever. Hmmm. I once heard it said that as long you are trying to do something, you will never actually do it. That means you get caught up in the trying and not in the doing. I imagine wishing is like that. What I likes about the exercise is that it definitely is a way to set your intentions. Intentions are the beginnings of deeds. You have to intend to go to market before you actually go, for example.
So now I have a list. 25 items. Cameron suggests updating or re-doing the list about once a month. She suggests that you will find yourself pondering your wishes and actually making some motion toward them as you go about your day. Today I do know those things I wished for have been on my mind. And many once again sound actually doable.
So what are you wishing for? Maybe you should make a list. There is something about the brain-hand-pen-paper connection that makes dreams become reality. At least it brings things into focus. Take it from me, I may not be a beggar, but the horse seems to be ready to ride.