I have a dump book…

Now I have this book, I guess you could call it a journal but I call it a dump book. I write all my feelings and thoughts of the day in here and I have been doing it on and off for a couple years now. 

When doing this consistently, I feel much more focused, to be honest when I go a long time without writing anything I can feel my head start to clutter and get messy. So, when I write these thoughts and feelings down, I gain a clearer mind. As though I’ve just wiped my lenses with a microfibre cloth. Clarity. The rest of the day becomes easier. I can think and function with more focus, even simple tasks do not become as much as a bother. 

I read something a long while a go from an army veteran saying cleaning your room and making your bed is the first step to achieving your goals. I believe this is true. especially now since I can see that this dump book has the same effect. It opens my mind up and tidy’s it. Organising my thoughts onto shelves and in draws, keeping them in a safe place if I need to come back to them later.

I even started watching Marie Condo on Netflix, I have tried to apply the same art of cleaning to the thoughts in my head.I found that if you apply the philosophy here correctly, It’s a magnificent art that really helps you not only declutter your house, flat or apartment but also your mind. 

The dump book is a powerful tool in allowing me to put things into perspective. By writing these things down not only can I read them back and truly digest them but it feels like I’ve got a magical extractor that plucks these thoughts out and puts them straight into this book. It’s a great feeling of relief. I can pick the thoughts that mean something to me, see why I think about them so much and then put them in a wardrobe on a hanger. Safe and out of sight.

The transformation of my writing has been very interesting since then and it has affected not only my mental wellbeing as a whole but also my creativity. Even the way I approach my writing changed. Before I would have to wait and even force myself to write. A lot of the scribbles I had on the page were dark and I gravitated towards writing horror stories. It felt the most natural thing for me to write. I was scared to write my true feelings and opinions on paper so I would instead masquerade myself behind a persona of a horror protagonist. A lot of the stories were abstract designs to portray my inner most feelings. I look back on them now and almost find it difficult to read without becoming emotionally affected by them. Old memories and feelings slowly sieve back into my conscious and it gets to me. 

Now however, since I’ve been writing in this dump book and confronting the feelings of day to day. My writing flows out easier and I feel like I can write for hours now without a second thought. Of course, the writing style and the themes within my writing have changed too. I feel like there is more of a balance in my writing. As before when writing my horror stories, I focused on what the reader would think and I was overly cautious about what I wrote. It was a ploy for me to express what I wanted to feel and think without letting anyone know they were in fact my own insecuritys. 

I read a book recently called ‘In Praise of Shadows’ which talked about Aesthetics in Japan. It was written by Junichiro Tanizaki and when I was reading it, I couldn’t help but notice the way he writes. He wrote in what I later discovered to be called ‘A Stream of Consciousness’ which at times seemed to be just ramblings. However, it all fit together. There was no blockage, Tanizaki wrote as he thought and it created a sense of genuineness within his writing. it was hard to track and understand at times what he meant by the topics he brought up. However, he retained a charm that is rare to see within other writers. Without realising it of course I wrote in this way in my dump book and ended up receiving plenty practice on that type of writing style. it is fascinating to see how the mind can almost drag your hand into writing without you really having a plan or outline. It’s almost like a strange muscle memory, like when Neo finally realises, he is ‘the one’ in The Matrix. 

It has been a strange transformation of writing. I feel my writing has changed, for the better and also for the worse. I have lost the intensity of the deep, dark and harrowing atmosphere of my previous stories and now have a clear stream of consciousness where the balance of atmosphere and thought-provoking themes has almost levelled out in a new way. It’s exciting to see where my writing will go to next. A new journey for me and a new start, it feels as though I have been reborn.

It would be difficult to decide what writing style is better, however, instead of looking to the past I wish to write in the present without comparing myself too much to my past self. Instead, I wish to just write. Write and that’s it! 

The dump book was key to me realising a lot about my creativity as well as my feelings with family, friends and any kind of relationships I have. Of course, it isn’t the only thing that has helped me improve my state of mind throughout the last couple years. But it is definitely a key part in it all. 

It would be great to see if anyone else has a ‘Dump Book’ and what their experiences were! Let me know on my social media page!

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