AN INTENTION TO HELP
How can we writers contribute to the world right now? I have a suggestion: Pretty please, can we adapt our writing habits to bring people higher in vibration? Specifically, can we stop using tired phrases such as, “In these uncertain times…” or “In light of the pandemic,” to begin each article, offer, and website alert? I’m sure we mean well—and it’s better than starting with, “HOLY SH*T!”—, but here’s why I want it changed up to something more neutral or positive.
TRUST IN THE READER
This style of opener came from academics, which encouraged the writer to state their starting position, and progress to arguing a point from there. This style is now the overriding habit of journalism, and is overused. I posit that every article should not be an argument, and every reader does not have to be convinced to agree with the author. We can open it up now. An amount of trusting the reader is necessary, trust that we are acquainted with where we are coming from and what got us here.
I do not truck in 0% or 100% statements as a principle. Of course the journalistic device / opening statement of this kind is not all bad—it is intended to put everyone on the same page, and it does. It’s a good way to come to an initial agreement when we nail a truth up-front. But with so many articles and fact sheets and websites having to make statements about the pandemic, now it’s used as a branding code:
“This is going to be about the virus and I am going to attest that it sucks. And then I’m going to try to spin a message of empowerment or hope out of that fact.” [ Is it a fact? I’ll write more on that another time. ]
The trouble with this device is that it does work to nail us to a starting point. And it feels manipulative, as branding codes inherently are. Do we really want to start there?
Words have power, and there is a great responsibility with power. Fear is on a low vibration—and the brain doesn’t know the difference between fear that is founded and fear that is illusion. “Uncertain times” and “in light of the recent crisis” triggers primal fear, and a human brain can’t help but respond to it. By starting our content with a trigger to fear, we are now initially on the page of lower vibration. We start in despair, trying to scale up to hope. And guess what? People who are already at a (perhaps hard-won) higher vibration are now being dragged down by your article. A phenomenal writer can pull this off, but please do it with awareness, and rarely. Respect for this power is a reason I am remaining cautious or silent so far as a writer in this new experience. What I tell myself and what I convey could be part of the general cacophony, or perhaps I can be a shifting force for good. The latter is my intention. Selfishly, too, people are already fatigued by fear and may stop reading.
IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS THE WORD
As an energy and body healer, my job is to sense vibration, mood, intention, physiological responses, my own and my clients’ at the same time. In a real way, holding a healing space is the ability to hold several conflicting truths at once. Talk about power! With this neutrality, all is possible. It takes practice. And necessarily, sessions contain lower vibration and higher, just as any article will. The point is not to attach truth or assumptions to anything up front. This is the healing space.
Initial words I choose in session are meant to NOT impose on the client, first and foremost, in a negative way, so as to make room for possible progress that wants to arise in the absence of constrictive thought. Some days I’m better at it than others, but it’s my intention. If I started with “where does it hurt?” I am suggesting strongly that pain is the most important vibration, and should be given priority to other sensations, such as strength, support, suppleness, etc. Instead I start with, “what are you noticing in your body right now?” I’ve gotten every answer, from “I feel really light and flowy” to (yes), “my elbow hurts.” My next move is usually to say, “and what else?” This spaciousness can be applied to an article or web content.
For an author, our intention (in terms of vibration) is put in motion in that first sentence and we can be neutral in this way, even a force for good, without losing our premise’s power. If one wishes to ultimately convey hope or empowerment for instance, one can start with deliberate care of the reader in the way of a healer. Give them space initially, to feel as they do, and evoke the reader to fill in the properties they choose to work with, and we can nudge instead of summarize and push.
We can start with, “There is an air of transition for many of us,” or “You may be looking for hope,” and we are still on the same page, perhaps the page of hope. We can start with, “Solo life is pretty new, huh?” and we are on a page of curiosity. Evocative phrases like, “Seeing out through the window of your room…” connects to people in imagery that is neutral to rote public opinion. The reader can choose their mood about that sentence. Better writers than I can think of better examples, but the point stands. There are endless creative ways to begin when we set our intention from a neutral-to-higher vibration. It doesn’t all have to begin and stay in ecstasy, but a notch or two up from fear at the outset is progress.
So with just a little thought, I think we can write articles with more empowering vibrations. This in itself is something all writers, (creative- to content-), can do to elevate the world through our public forum. Use our gifts of imagination to heal!
Kerry E McKenna