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Words Don't Come Easy...To Me...

Get your word power on!

I have a beautiful friend who I've always considered expressed himself the way he wanted. Turns out he can't. And mostly, he can't say the words that mean so very much to him - on any topic, not just emotions - because he's too invested in their meaning.

Words and hearts are intertwined. They show up the vulnerable-self as well as the magnificent-self. They convey messages sometimes we ourselves aren't aware of until they're shared, invite an unexpected, unwanted verbal duel, or worse yet, result in stunned silence.

One of my patients doesn't like to talk. Another never uses adjectives, describing words.

Sometimes they mindlessly fall out all over the place, often without permission then leave us in a heap having to make up for them somehow.

What is it about words that leave us dumb-founded? Maybe there's some wisdom in the idea of your real self being separated from your persona.

Your persona, the part of you that gets shown to the world outside, is 'known' by others who see you in a particular light. Sometimes that light will be overly full of diamond-dust, other times that light contains black coal dust. That's our persona presenting ourselves to the world, & it has a variety of faces each of which are designed to address certain perceived needs of others.

Your true-self however, might be very similar or very different from your persona depending on how physically & emotionally safe you feel with the world around you in any given moment.

Words bridge these 2 aspects of the Self, and have the ability to greatly enhance our experience of the world, or to destroy something precious instead. Because words often fall out of us in unguarded moments they can feel a bit threatening - you can't take them back. Possibly more worrying, they may come from the true-self, betraying the persona-self.

The following exercise inexplicably helps with verbal self expression, so give it a go. It doesn't solve problems or provide words, instead it fuels you with the self knowledge that allows the right words to flow for you when needed:

  • Distinguish between your personas (each of them) & your true-self. Know who you are in your various life situations - work, home, intimate relationship, parenting, saucy friends, aloof friends and so on...
  • Acknowledge the differences and the strengths within each those differences. These will be largely related to the situation
  • Describe these personas, their strengths in a list of 6-12 single words
  • Meditate, ponder or have a cuppa whilst reflecting over the 'felt-accuracy' of those words, adjust any as need be. Each word needs to feel right, rather than be totally accurate. 
  • Draw a doodle of some sort for each persona in colour
  • Take a look at each list of words for each persona, & turn them into a mini poem - preferably do this really quickly, taking about 90seconds per list of words, just long enough to bring each of the words in the list together and make sense. This is bit is definitely not about thinking!

After dong this for each of your personas and your true-self, sit back and consider what you've written. Some of it will make you laugh, some will be revealing.

The end result is a few words by which you can understand yourself better & you'll find that using words anywhere in your life will be easier. I don't know what this works, & it doesn't work for everyone, but it might just work for you if it give it a go....

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