So, if you’ve arrived at my blog from my newsletter you will know that over a month ago I told you I was going to publish journaling exercises right here to suit different moods. And, after a bit of a delay, I’m finally getting round to it.
Here’s the first one – loneliness. It may seem like a strange place to start, and normally I might start earlier in the alphabet with a mood like “active” or “afraid”.
But no. Just because I like to keep things interesting for myself I decided to write out all the moods onto blank playing cards, then draw one at random each time I would come to write my blog. That way I don’t know which one’s going to show up. And it might leave some room for intuitive serendipity or juicy coincidence, which we journal writers live for.
So lonely it is.
Of course as I’m writing this my inquiring mind is wanting to know whether I am at some level feeling lonely myself, and whether this is a good or a bad thing. Am I isolating myself? Are there people I ought to be connecting with but right now I’m not? How do I feel about loneliness?
Great questions! I’ll save them for my journal later.
It is often said that you can never be lonely with a good book. The same can be true even if that book is your journal.
Gaining perspective on our life and becoming aware of the different levels of consciousness that are available to us can trick our mind into feeling less lonely. It can even start to feel positively crowded!
Striking up a dialogue in our journal with a comforting figure in our life, or even with our body or our creative self, is a way of accessing different voices which are meaningful to us, and which bring us different perspectives, as if from different people.
And sometimes we know that what’s needed in order to help us feel more connected and less lonely in the world is to actually reach out and say hello, ask for help or do a favour for someone.
The maxim ‘give in order to receive’ is a useful rule of thumb, and whenever we notice a lack of something in our life – like company, friendship or love – it’s always worth reflecting on how much we are making ourselves available to others in those terms.
In order to alleviate feelings of loneliness try the inquiry “what more can I give”, and act on what emerges for you.
Extract from The Journal Writer’s Handbook by Juliet Platt