I don’t know whether you have noticed, but my blog titles have shifted from being writing our way whole: at home to just simply writing our way whole (which is the copyright title of my practice, now also shared locally face-to-face or remotely over Zoom).
I’ve made that shift consciously, to reflect my own emergence from the inside, enclosing world of home (even, perhaps, a claustrophobic world, like it was right at the beginning of Lockdown, when I first published posts like this).
A shift into the Outside World, which in my own experience has involved a lot of Brave Behaviour (UK English spelling) and much gentle kindliness, both towards myself (and that can be hard) and towards others whose definitions and practice of ‘safety’ differ from my own.
(Like the unmasked young woman who nearly charged into me while crossing Academy Street in Inverness last week, when I was on a Bravery Day to the dentist. Cue: thoughts of ‘if you can smell their perfume, you’re too close’…)
In short, I have been engaged, particularly over the last eighteen months (years…) , with noticing my boundary-keeping behaviours: whether they are wise, neurotic, frightened, respectful, risky, risk-averse, or generous.
Over the years I have been aware of my relationship with boundaries changing, first gradually and then – lately – radically.
It’s been a case of the boundaries that first provide shelter can later become a prison, if we buy into that. Not because of their nature per se, but from the qualities that we attribute to them, and how fixed our view becomes about them.
Here I want to introduce an imaginative exercise, rather than delve deep into Boundary Psychology today (yet you may be interested in ‘Boundary Boss‘ by Terri Cole, although I haven’t managed to read it yet).
Today’s exercise is purely for fun, but may provide some insight into how we can tend to limit our perspective about the nature of Boundaries and their roles.
SoulStorm is a more “right-side brain”, intuitive approach to brainstorming.
(I have used similar free-flow ideas-generating processes earlier in for example, here.)
On a large paper sheet (that you can photograph at the end), or in your Bound ThoughtBook, write down (chaotically is fine, and in colour if you like) any:
words that are synonyms or near matches for BOUNDARY.
What about edge and hedge for a start? You can also use bound as in ‘out of bounds’ and pound as in ‘Police Pound’ where lost bikes were impounded (at least in 1970s Cambridge) until claimed by their student owners.
And in this exercise I invite you to push quite hard on the boundaries of what you feel are acceptable responses – and if you find you are ‘breaking the rules’, then so much the better!
For example,what about amniotic sac, hemline, casting off, and pushing the boat out as examples of acceptable phrases and metaphor?
After ten minutes or so, review what you have produced, and photograph or save the page for future inspiration.
Below in Golden Threadwork are some prompts for further writing,derived from the ideas offered above.
Why not review your own SoulStorm words/phrases, and see what Golden Threadworks they suggest to you, either to share, or to spare, or to forswear, snare, pass on the stair….
That way you may release Golden Threads that are especially resonant with your current and recent experiences.
If you are working in a group, you may want to stop and share, to widen the options available to each of you.
Using the threads below, or ones you have released: boundlessly, go write!
That couture tip was never to iron a hemline, the better to adjust …
‘Wider still and wider/ may your bounds be set‘ they sang with jingoistic gusto at…
In that dance workshop she found herself punching her bare feet down, down, upon the elastic, resilient amniotic sac …
On being told he was progressing in leaps and bounds, he retorted that he was not a Hare, yet maybe …
He needed help with casting on his piece of knitting, whereas he got the hang of …
You needn’t push the boat out to have a memorable …
The Hare hunkered down in the headland of the field, close to the hedge, and …
In an earlier episode of this long-running series, we briefly visited the power of affirmation. I invite you to complete the affirmation below, again and again and again, as many times as you like, in your Thoughtbook. Then make a date in your diary or on your calendar, to read through your affirmation list in two or three days’ time and/or a week’s time.
I approach my boundaries with …
On the read-through, I suggest that you select the most helpful or positive or ‘heart-opening’ affirmations, and write them out again, to post somewhere where you will see them in your daily life.
Or write them on a postcard and mail them back to yourself with a slow-rate stamp.
for you to write your own, before mine
Today I am grateful for:
Today I’m grateful for:
~ a compliment from my French friend,, who sent ‘much gratitude for a very palpable remote loving companionship ‘
~ the lunchtime mushroom (large), which made lots of luscious gravy to dip my bread in;
~ the large amount of “moving on” I have done over the past week, even while staying put. (I ain’t goin’ nowhere, except down to the beach…)