Write your earliest
memories. Describe your thoughts, your feelings, the people
present and the details of the surroundings. Consider how
this experience has impacted your view of the world. Notice
if those first experiences have been repeated themselves
in similar patterns in your life.
- Draw a time line. Insert important events and experiences
along the line. If you like, take it into the future,
describing what you think will happen.
- Draw a graph of the ups and downs in your life. Write
about the things that you notice from looking at the graph.
- Write about: your neighborhood, your best friend, your
room when you were young, your first day of school, what
it was like going to church, games you played by yourself
and with your friends, your first crush; your first date;
your first serious love, memories that come to mind during
the day and how those helped form you; what is significant
about them or how they relate to what is going on at the
- Mindmap: start off with an idea or a problem written
in the middle of a page and then draw lines off from that
word and put down other words that come to mind.
- Write down your dreams and your interpretations. If
it is a scary dream, give it a happy or funny ending.
Free associate: let your mind wander and write down everything
that comes to mind. What do you learn about yourself from
looking at the list of words?
- Write about your childhood with your nondominant hand.
- Write a dialogue between the adult you and the child
you, using your dominant hand to write for the adult and
the nondominant hand to write for the child. Go to the
park and write about what you see (take verbal snapshots).
- Think back on a pleasant vivid experience from life.
Describe every detail that you can remember: what you
could see, what you could hear, what it felt like, the
smells and the tastes. Use this detailed description to
write a poem.
- Write a letter to someone from the present or past in
order to take care of some unfinished business.
- Make a gratitude list. List all the things that you
are grateful for in separate lists according to sight,
taste, touch, smell and hearings. Leave room to add to
- Write down old family stories. Note how these have influenced
your view of yourself. Do word portraits of people that
you have known.
- Write down your fears. Figure out if you can discover
where they came from. Decide what you could do to get
rid of them.