Sharing social struggles through writing

training.creativementalhealth.org.uk

At our fortnightly meet-up of the Forum Theatre in Southsea, we always include a warm up of some kind, usually silly and funny! and often through writing.

Our last session I decided to create a sharing exercise that was so simple, but worked brilliantly. I asked us to consider how we feel in a social setting that we are not comfortable in and write that down in a few words. We then passed this piece of paper on to the next person on our left and then carried on the description of how we might find a challenging social situation. The idea is that each person told a story of their own unique experience, however this was spread over the bits of paper that were being passed around.

The ‘consequence’ of this exercise was that at the end we each read out the piece of paper we were last holding- and told a short story of how uncomfortable it can sometimes be, in a social situation that we want to get away from. It was surprisingly hilarious, mostly because they all read so seamlessly as if only one person had written the whole paragraph.

Here are a  few examples:

“I’m feeling anxious, the knots are rising up in my throat. It’s funny really, I tend to talk and talk. I wish I could swallow. Smoke emerging from my nostrils.”

“I get hot and red faced. I notice how to escape. Raging like a bull inside. I use the Stopp technique- I’m aware about how I feel- it’s ok, ok, ok I feel better- much better. Take a breath and breathe.”

See how good they are?

It was a great sharing exercise. We focus on a lot of techniques like this in our workshops to encourage sharing of difficult feelings but in ways that are comfortable for people and even fun!

If you would like to find out more about what we do then contact us directly and we can chat about any forum theatre and writing workshops that might suit your workplace, school or group.

Healing through creative arts is very accessible, positive and inclusive. We look forward to sharing more soon.

 

 

About Jude

After many years working in the social care sector, Jude has extensive experience working closely with people rebuilding their lives following ill health or personal setbacks. Jude started up a her own business Judelicious three years ago; promoting ways to help people find their own deliciousness focusing on the benefits of plant based food and easy steps to transform a low vibration lifestyle in to a higher one! Jude graduated from Sussex University in 2008 with a MA in Creative Writing and Personal Development, which has also been a strong focus in her work, finding ways of exploring and expressing our unique experience of life through the therapeutic benefits of writing. Jude also hosted a Positive Living group in Lymington in the New Forest for two years which introduced her to a lot of speakers in the spiritual and positive health field, many of whom have influenced her path. She currently works for the mental health charity Together as a support worker, and is keen to do more community work with the healing benefits of the creative arts.