Stream of consciousness
Write continuously for a set time (for example somewhere between 5-10 minutes). What you write does not matter, the only goal is to not pause to review or reflect. Your hand should keep moving throughout the whole exercise. When the time is up, read what you have written and underline the parts that speak to you most. You can then use these sentences to create a seperate reflection or poem.
Alternatively you can start with a sentence stem related to a topic you want to reflect on. If you want to reflect on friendship, you could start with the sentence stem: ‘To me friendship…’ or ‘If I had not known friendship..”.
In both literature and psychology the term ‘stream of consciousness’ makes an appearance and both these fields offer information to enhance the appreciation for this exercise and variations on it’s theme. The term “stream of consciousness” was coined by philosopher and psychologist William James (1842 – 1910). James was influential in the shaping of the philosophy of psychology in the late nineteenth century in America. He was one of the first people who tried to conceptualize the constant stream of our thoughts, in print while also writing about his theories on brain functioning in relation to psychology (in the Western world, I should add. In Buddhist philosophy this concept is written about centuries BCE).
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