November is National Writing Month

Writing may be defined as the process of using symbols to communicate thoughts and ideas, yet also a creation of art and a cathartic form of therapy. Stories are medicine for the soul. Since cavemen entertained around the fire, sharing wisdom and fables, they also recorded valuable lessons for generations to pass down. Structure was developed for messages to be comprehended and conveyed for thousands of years. As we have evolved into languages with specific rules, yet writing doesn’t have to be so serious, writing can be fun and incredibly healing.

At DBT Center of Orange County, Alysa Osvog, Gateless Certified Writing Coach and Yoga Therapist leads writing groups, specifically designed to shift from the cognitive, overthinking mind and relax into the imaginal. We anchor into feeling safe in the freedom of expression and access internal strength and wisdom.

Gateless Writing method is based on brain science to nurture the creative genius through positive reinforcement, silencing the inner critic who has no place in true healing. We begin with guided meditation that leads into writing prompt- opportunity to free flow words without being analyzed. After about 10 minutes, participants are invited to share- receiving only positive feedback based on the work. Validating strengths in every voice that has a right to be heard. The practice boosts group cohesion and confidence on the page and in life.
Gateless Writing is a technique that draws on the research and work of Suzanne Kingsbury, a Fulbright scholar, novelist, and one of the most sought-after developmental editors in the country. Her interdisciplinary study of Buddhism, brain science, and creativity, she cites the work of Dr. David Herzog at Harvard Medical School and Dr. Eugene Aquili and Dr. Andrew Newberg at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, who found that when we reduce activity in the parts of the brain associated with negativity, we open up to imagination, creativity and healing.

Alysa found Gateless writing, reluctantly as part of the schedule on retreat, she wasn’t overjoyed about. However, from the first experience she was in awe of the courage, vulnerability that showed up when the critic wasn’t invited. When there is no room for judgment we awaken dormant ideas, surprise our subconscious and feel safe enough to welcome in those innermost ‘ahha’ moments. We witness the narrator receive praise for creating art, connecting dots and integrating with an unvalidated voice. We see their lights come on from being heard and nurtured. Alysa continued learning from renowned authors at Esalen Writers Camps and enrolled in the Gateless Academy and Teaching Certification, in 2016.

“Every week I theme around the same writing prompt, yet every salon is entirely different. While the details and descriptions are unique, what threads through each group is the same. Just as our ancestors’ cherished this medicine of storytelling for thousands of years. The mediums and muses change, yet our humanity will remain weaved together by the power of the written word.”

Written by our Mindful Writing Teacher, Alysa Osvog
⦿ Certified Yoga Therapist
⦿ Certified Gateless Writing Coach
⦿ Business Marketing Degree CU Boulder, Colorado

Photo Credit: @lilartsy on Unsplash

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