Updated: Feb 16
This year, in an attempt to be more transparent across my platforms and connect with people on a personal level beyond my words, I started sharing my ‘thoughts’ from the day (three little snippets with a photo I’d taken that day) onto my Instagram stories - not intending it to become regular feature or a ‘thing’ necessarily. However, I have had an incredibly positive response from you all, particularly with a poll I put out where 100% of you (thank you!!) said you enjoyed me sharing these insights. I’ve also received lovely and varied messages about them, wanting to expand upon what I share as well as how this relates to myself and my poetry.
This led me to thinking that my blog would be an ideal space for some mid-week musings, especially if you’re in a bit of a funk like me by the time it gets to Thursday. I’m hoping that learning to share more of my thoughts with you (albeit online), can act as a cathartic purging of my all things ruminative in my head, whilst also allowing you to see more of my process and how these experiences enter into my work. Don’t worry, I’ll only be sharing three from each week, so we won’t be getting too deep and extensive and personal – ultimately, Thursday Thoughts is an extension of my 'Thoughts' stories from Instagram. Please feel free to let me know if this is something you enjoy or are interested in, either by commenting below or getting in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org or through my socials.
19.01.20: ‘Never lose sight of the green.’
For me, this comes from my walks and being outdoors. As you can see from the photo I took that day, the land was heavily flooded and I was very lucky with the weather, so the water appeared very blue due to the reflection of the near cloudless sky. Now for me, green is my favourite colour (only need to see my Instagram for evidence), and one of my absolute favourite things to do when walking is taking in the colour of the great outdoors, particularly green as it’s my favourite. So on a day like when this photo was taken, and there is so much blue (an overpowering amount of bolder colour), the green can be harder to find. I believe that when I wrote this, I was initially thinking literally and reacting to what I could see in front of me; no matter how mono-tonal your surrounding appear, there is always some green to be seen, or some colour or richness to be enjoyed. I feel since then however, I’ve used this to take on a different meaning (a little similar to ‘every cloud has a silver lining’): never lose sight of the bigger picture, which ironically will be a smaller detail, or something more nuanced. For myself, the ‘green’ is the life, the flicker of something different or the possibility for change. It is the reminder that everyone has the capacity for change if you never lose sight of what is right in front of you.
21.01.20: ‘You have to learn how to be alone’.
Whilst it is our basic human nature to seek comfort - whether that be physically with other people, or in another form, such as listening to people speak on tv or the radio - you have to learn to be alone and to be ok with that, as it really isn’t the same thing as being lonely (which people can so often mistake it for). I'm aware as being a naturally introverted person, I am in a fortunate position as I largely find the physical aspect of being on my own easier. However, I also find it natural and habitual to digress into myself and put myself into a negative space when I am entirely on my own and isolated from human contact in any form, which isn’t healthy or anything I would recommend anyone do. I guess I am saying that you have to learn and teach yourself the balance between being with others and being on your own, and you need to spend time doing each of these in a way that works for you, whilst also respecting others. You won’t always get it right – it is definitely a process of trial and error - and it won’t always be easy, but it is a totally necessary process in order to thrive. I try to conquer this through podcasts (you can find one on literally anything, however niche your interest), which help give me the physicality of another human voice without having to physically speak to someone. But, at different times, a good TV series on in the background, music or reading all work well to give me the sense of communication that I need (and to an extent) crave to curb the feelings of loneliness; in a way, almost 'tricking' myself into contact. There are many other methods that can help you spend time alone, many of which you’ll figure out yourself as you find your way, and are also likely and subject to change at different stages of your life. I have found it really helps to find something you enjoy, which makes it easier to then work your method into a routine or combine activities (I mean, walking and podcasts go hand in hand and I urge you to give them a try if you're sceptical - believe me I was too!). Learning to be comfortable alone and to manage this in a healthy way has really helped me with my writing, particularly as my poems tending to discuss a range of mental health issues and mental processes that relate to thoughts, feelings and physical actions as well as trying to relate these to experiences and memories. Learning to be comfortable alone has helped to deepen these processes and give me a greater understanding of the way I work and how better to relate my work to others.
24.01.20: ‘Sometimes the reflection is better than the view.’
Another pretentious-sounding, mock-philosophical 'doctrine' that I thought in response to taking this picture. I love a good tree in winter where its bare branches overlap, creating shapes and gaps that change with the limited light available at this time of year. And I also love a good reflection – I'm thinking a warm spring day with clouds stretched across the smooth surface of a feature pond, rich autumn colours somewhat warmer when reflected in ripples or puddles, and contorted branches becoming curved ines on the water's surface in winter. This photo I took of the reflections of the trees was better than the trees themselves, their reflected version seeming more beautiful and complex, largely due to the movements in the water. I think I was also applying this in a metaphorical sense, in that we can be so wrapped up in what is in front of us; what is uncertain and what we have limited control over. Whilst obsessively dwelling on the past can never change a future outcome, reflecting on what has been is necessary, and in turn can be helpful; when used correctly as a tool to heal, looking back can sometimes be better than ignoring what has happened because it allows us to see our mistakes and learn from them, as well as developing upon what worked well or what we did right. Taking a little time out to look past what is immediately in front of us, replicating or improving upon the past by shifting our focus a little and taking in more than one variable can be better than just taking in the absolute.
Until next time, H.M.
References and Further Reading:
All pictures taken by H.M. Reynolds and posted on the @hmrwrites Instagram account between 19.01.20 and 24.01.20.
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