What I've learnt from writing

When it all started..
Ever since I can remember I've liked writing. I still have memories of being asked to write a story in school, English was a favourite subject of mine. Fast forward a few years to university in my introduction to journalism class, I realised writing is what I enjoy doing and would possibly like to pursue a career in. I learnt to write journalistic, academically and creatively.

Countless words that would determine my final grade and slowly writing became un-enjoyable at times especially during the deadline periods. In my free time the last thing I wanted to do was write, the same with reading. It was a great day when my dissertation supervisor said I had a talent for writing, to be complimented by an academic adviser on a skill that I love put a smile on my face. After finishing my degree and taking a break I started finding some work experience writing articles and of course focusing a little more on writing for this blog.

A new approach..
It was not until last Winter that I began to write in a journal. A few things changed in my life and I needed an outlet to try and help make sense of it and to vent how I was feeling. From what I can remember not one person has ever told me directly at least that writing down your personal thoughts and feelings can be healing method. I started doing this because I simply didn't know what else to do and it was one of the only things I felt like doing most days. A place that only you, the pen and the paper you're writing on will know what it going through your mind at that moment in time.

I found comfort in writing in a little book, usually in the evening is when I do my most journal writing it felt healthy to take that time for myself, let it all out and relieve the bad things or enthuse in the good. Along the way I did not rely on it so much, it has not stopped me from continue to write. It's still an important way for me to express myself. The gaps in between the times I do write are not as frequent as they once were. Now I think they have a bit more significance. I keep it still to record some personal milestones, events, days and dreams I want to remember. Or whatever I want. It's my journal so I write or don't write what I feel like.

Why you should write..
I know not everyone likes to write or may feel silly or that they can't. However I encourage everyone to at least think about trying it out once and giving it a go. It can be a few words or pages. You can throw it away or keep it forever. It's as simple as putting pen to paper. Typing on the computer I imagine has a similar effect but the medium is the message, it does the same job but you could get so much more from it by physically scribbling down the words.

It may inspire you, make you feel better, think clearer. One of the best things about it is that you're documenting your life through your eyes. Imagine looking back on that years from now. Seeing how your life has changed. You never know hundreds or thousands of years from now a researcher may be looking for evidence about what life was like in the early 21st century and will see a snippet from you.

There are an endless amount of possibilities that can come from writing. And a lot of it is good. Try it, you never know where it could take you.

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October Music

When this time of year comes around the music I listen to changes slightly, I put on more acoustic, slower songs with lyrics that send goosebumps down your body like the chill of the colder air. It's a more peaceful time of year and music is a powerful addition to your life. Despite how beautiful it is when I look at the trees changing colour they are also dying. It provokes me to reflect on everything and I like to do so at the moment with these songs. I hope you like some of them as much as I do.

October Music by Natasha Chan on Grooveshark

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The heart is faster than the head

A little while ago, my friend and I were talking about many things and somehow we started discussing feelings and how you can't control them. Then out of nowhere I made the statement that went along the lines of  '..sometimes I think we don't know how we're feeling about something until we know, we feel things but may not know until our brain catches up.'

We discussed that point and thought it was an interesting idea, I wasn't even sure how that came out of my mouth. Heat of the moment. It's in some way similar to the phrase 'you don't realise what you had until it's gone'.  You don't realise how you feel until that moment something sparks in your mind or happens and you understand it clearly. For example, I have had many bruises in my life and have almost always not known where they came from. My body knows a bruise is developing however I don't know I've been hurt until I see the dark patch on my skins and then I begin to feel the numbness of the bruise.

It has really made me wonder if that's the case for most feelings. Our bodies feel the emotion before the mind registers it. I have no idea if a study has been carried out to prove this idea but what I know is how I feel, what I think and the way we have little control over it.

While at university I studied semiotics, the philosophical theory of signs for a section of my course. We applied the theory in a method used in advertising and marketing to attract an audience. If we apply signs that our bodies show us we get certain indications that in turn suggest an emotion or feeling.

Crying means we're sad (or happy) it's a way of showing an intense feeling.
Bleeding means we're hurt or something is not quite right with our body.
Coughing means you might be getting a cold, ingested something that does not belong or agree with you.

These are of course a few simple examples. They happen but it is not until we see it that we know the meaning behind it.

When I said that to my friend I was focusing more on personal feelings. For me when something happens I think about it for a while and really try to understand my thoughts on it. Whether it's something very insignificant to my life or highly important. It's the way I'm wired. It is a little unnecessary at times because I believe on some level your heart and gut knows how you feel. Some people act on impulse decisions where some think logically about decisions, there is no right or wrong way. Almost always deep down you know instantly but it can sometimes take longer for your head the catch up or give reason.

Some might disagree with this completely or know if it's scientifically proven. Either way I do know that we can't control how we feel, no matter what. If your mind wants to be happy but your heart and body doesn't feel that way, you can't force it. You can't force any feeling or emotion.

Your heart is stronger than your head. It knows before you know. You can't fight it.

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Down the country path

A few weeks ago I took a trip up to Scotland, where I was born and where half my family live. Throughout my whole life I always remember making the journey there, when I was a child it was by car and now by flying. Although there is not much to do at my Grandparents house in the countryside I forget how gorgeous the landscapes are, miles and miles of fields and trees. The air is cleaner, it's so peaceful and you can walk around the roads feeling safe and to my surprise a cheerful 'hey there' and 'it's a fine day today' from complete strangers just walking past. I do for a moment consider moving to a place like this where it is slower, calmer and friendlier. Then I think, where do the people that live here go when they want a break away from the already peace and quiet? For now I'll settle for living on the outskirts of London and the smaller towns. I took a walk with my sister down a path I never visited before and quickly found a small bridge and river amongst the tall trees. I sat on a bench beside it for a few minutes and let the sun warm up my face. It's the simple things that can make you feel so good inside.

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