05/06/2015 12:02 BST | Updated 05/06/2016 06:59 BST

Rewriting Your Life

I had an experience during one self-hypnosis/relaxation session that I felt should be shared. It is a mental technique for the subconscious mind that is intended to be at its most effective in deep trance, but yet again, it offered an insight, that undeniable light-bulb moment in the midst of my deep relaxation, that put another piece of life's great jigsaw puzzle in its place.

You sit down in a comfy chair, pen and notebook in hand. You write. Write down all the experiences you want to erase the negative memories from. For example, some of mine would be panic attacks. Breakdowns. Being ignored in school while struggling so painfully inside. Doctors writing me off as an attention seeker. Whatever your experiences, write until you have no words left to inscribe on those sheets of paper.

Then cut it all up. This is important. Use scissors to get a precise cut as it will make the later task easier by far!

Slice up very last page. Every last word. Cut randomly so you have a bunch of letters here, a single letter there, a full word every so often. Cut it into tiny pieces until all you have left is a confetti of jumbled letters and words.

Place the pile of words and letters into a box and close the lid.

You might be thinking the next step would be to throw it away, to take it to someplace in the mind where it will not be easily uncovered again. But wait...if we throw it away, or bury it, are we really gaining any insights and self-reflection? If we get rid of it, are we maybe, just maybe, running away from our life experiences and the lessons they can possibly teach us?

To write is, in itself, an outlet. To write, without thinking, about negative past experiences we would really rather forget, and then to either burn, shred or tear it up, is immensely therapeutic and recommended by many therapists. But if we got rid of all the pieces of all that pain, we wouldn't be able to do this:

We wouldn't be able to go and sit back down in that chair and open that beautiful box. We wouldn't be able to pick out a random handful of letters and words in order to make new words and sentences. To rewrite the story, the experience, using the exact same words.

And within every single experience you have scribed and cut, no matter how short or long, no matter how life-altering and devastating the experience, you will find letters that spell out the very things that were there in that experience in the first place without you ever knowing.

Love. Future. Self-worth. Value. Trust.



They were always there, within that awful experience you went through. It just took cutting it up into pieces to be able to see it. Perhaps the value in this technique is that it allows you to reassess what you saw as a hopeless, bleak, horrid time; to see that even though you went through all that and thought you knew every single thing about that experience, there were in fact things there all along that you couldn't see and desperately wanted to find. They never went away; they were just hidden.

Now you know they were always within you. How does that make you feel about all those things you wrote about?

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