3 Gorgeous Guided Meditations for Writers
By Thea Fiore-Bloom, Ph.D.
Sometimes folks innocently ask me, ‘does meditation help with writing?’
I get so excited that I probably need someone to tie my arms behind my back to keep my Italian hands from gesticulating like a maniac, as I shout:
“Yes! Yes! Meditation helps with writing.”
Here’s why. Most everyone is a brutal self-critic of their own writing.
But creatives like us?
Oh, we’re even worse to ourselves than most. Why?
Because sometimes instead of using our abundant creativity to write, we’ve developed a dark talent wherein we use that very creativity to sabotage our writing.
By that I mean we can use our inventive genius to convincingly come up with cruel, brilliant, but untrue, self-talk that discourages our efforts to write from our hearts.
In fact, if we leave our negative, anti-matter, creative self-talk unchecked it can stop us from showing up at our desks; for weeks, months, or even years.
(For my supportive post How To Write More Often go here.)
Benefits of Meditation for Writers
And that’s where the Buddhist practices of mindfulness and meditation can come to our rescue.
Meditation benefits creatives in piles of ways, I’ll just share three with you now:
1. Meditation creates an inner sanctuary where you can protect your best writing self from your worst writing self (your inner critic).
For example, mindfulness meditation can stop you from standing outside your creative garden wall with your mental hair in knots yelling obscene, mean things to your writing self inside (who’s just bravely trying to get some work started.)
It can interrupt your habit of yelling generally horrid or personalized horrid stuff at yourself like: ‘you’re so unorganized, you’re lazy, you’re not smart enough, you’ll never finish this, remember what that teacher told you about you having no writing talent, etc.”
In other words, meditation can help us to “back away from the vehicle” and switch into a self-loving mindset.
And if getting us to”back away from the vehicle” wasn’t enough, meditation can then beckon us to metaphorically pour a wagon load of conditioner on our heads.
Why conditioner Thea?
Well, see, I have crazy curly hair and when it’s tangled it’s useless to try and dry brush it. So I learned in midlife to pour a ton of conditioner on my head and let it soak for a minute.
Before I know it, all my knots have unraveled by themselves.
The same holds true for the writing process: meditation can be the self-love-filled conditioner for your mental knots. It will encourage you to slow down and self-lovingly comb out your ideas a little bit each day until eventually, you have a lovely, curly, unique but coherent body of work you’ll be proud of.
(To build your mindfulness sanctuary do the first meditation below.)
First Meditation For Writers
(Open this one via your phone not your laptop and it will work.)
Writing Sanctuary Practice by Heather Demetrios, 20 minutes.
“This 20-minute guided visualization for writers and creatives in deep need of a sanctuary.
Together, we explore how your art can be the harbor in your life, not the storm. We heal our relationship to our work so that we can find refuge in it, rather than a combative relationship with our medium.
This relaxing, healing, peaceful guided visualization sets you up for a regular practice to dip into as needed.
Breathe, write, repeat.”
So you got patience, how about some courage?
2. Meditation engenders courage in aspiring and professional writers.
And courage will encourage you to use your wise, unique voice and raucous sense of humor.
If you want a download of courage, belief, and connection with your unique writing heart do this second mediation.
It’s one of the meditations I’ve recorded to give to my writing coaching clients when they need a magical leg up.
Second Meditation For Writers
Short Tarot-Centered Meditation for Artists to Overcome Writing Fear
by Thea Fiore-Bloom (your humble guide here at The Charmed Studio), 7 minutes.
This 7-minute mini-guided tour through the chakras is a refreshing, empowering pre-writing pep talk. It’s the kind of talk I try to give myself when I am stuck or scared.
So it’s made with love, especially for heart-centered artists like you.
I recorded it to help you remember how cool you are and what unique wisdom and humor you have to offer the world.
This tarot-based meditation will up your confidence and strengthen your ability to speak what is in your soul and delight your audience. Use it if you can’t seem to start writing on certain days. I’m told in just 7 minutes it will help you muster up the self-love you need to get you to your desk.
3. Finally, Meditation restores trust in oneself as a writer.
As author and mindfulness mentor Heather Demetrios says, meditation can be a ‘trust fall’ for writers.
If we check in with our soul through any kind of meditation, we give her the chance to catch us in her strong arms and remind us that we do have the resilience, reliability, grit, curiosity, and compassion to not just start, but finish our dream project.
To access all that good stuff try this third meditation here.
Third Meditation For Writers
(Open this one via your phone not your laptop and it will work.)
Finish Your Book Visualization by Heather Demetrios, 25 minutes.
“This is a visualization practice to embody the feeling of finishing your book.
Whether you’re on the 10th draft or the tenth sentence the work we do here will keep your eyes on the prize, no matter the challenges you face […].”
Over to You, What Do You Think?
Do you ever meditate?
Would you be up for giving writing meditations a try? Let me know in the comments below.
“Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor.” — Anne Lamott
Here are a few other Charmed Studio Posts you might enjoy:
Meditations for Artists: Reduce Fear, Ignite Creativity
Daily Writing Ritual to Banish Fear and Open Your Heart (Also Works for Painting)
How Art Can Heal a Broken Heart or Ground You in Uncertain Times
How To Stay Positive: 4 Tips for Artists from the Life of Rachel Carson
Write (or Refresh)Your Artist Statement in 30 Minutes
How To Write a Kick-Butt Opening Paragraph: With this Easy Paragraph Sandwich Template
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Kate K says
Thank you for the tarot meditation. I’m surrounded by your words–and cats–as I begin the day.
Kate, what a lovely comment. You have made my week. Two questions for you. 1. What are you working on writing wise? 2. Would you be interested in trying an affirmations audio I just recorded for artists and writers? I was thinking of including it in this post. It would be free. Let me know if that is something that might interest you or help you with your project. Thanks, Thea. 🙂
Kate K says
Anxiety for all the reasons you specified. I write a weekly pet column and need to write it for myself. Sure, couldn’t hurt, but that tarot one did it for me. The cats send their love!
Coming up with a weekly column is no easy feat. I admire you. And the pay for such gigs is now woefully low in my opinion. It is a ton of work for not enough money in most cases.If you are doing for your own blog, leave a link here in the comments. I’m sure people who like to check it out.
Here is the one and only article I wrote for Catster Magazine, it’s humorous, you might like it. I dont think the editor did, lol!https://www.catster.com/cat-health-care/mobile-vet-care-advantages-and-drawbacks
Be well,thanks, Thea
Denise McCanles says
I love this! I am convinced that meditation is the key to world peace. I read a wonderful book called Untamed and in it she talks about how she was always getting advice from the outside of herself and never from inside. It was making her life hell. So she went into her closet and closed her eyes and listened to her breathing for 10 minutes each day. Little by little she started realizing that all the answers are in her and not outside. I think that’s the key. If we go inside ourselves for the answers to our creativity, purpose in life, direction, or whatever choices we want to make, we would have the answers. Of course the hardest part is dedication and perseverance every day. That’s what I’m trying to work with right now. It’s not easy. But when I do, I see a difference.
Your comment brings up much food for thought. I love how that author you read didn’t say she went into her “yoga studio” or “meditation chamber” but instead says she went into her CLOSET. Go girl. Sometimes all the outer stuff, we think we need to meditate (or to write, or start a podcast for that matter) isn’t necessary. Little closets can be just as powerful and sacred and get the job done. (I record the podcast in my closet-great acoustics and cozy.) As you say the key is “dedication and perseverance” to form a meditation habit. Michael Bungay Stanier (an Australian author I think is funny and smart who wrote The Coaching Habit) says the way he finally started meditating regularly was to promise himself he would sit on his meditation cushion for just one minute a day. So now, even if he bolts off it, at least he’s visited. 🙂 Maybe I’ll try that too.
Thanks for sharing your wise perspective Denise.
Denise McCanles says
I love this one minute a day sounds like a much better way to start. 10 minutes and I’m going out of my mind but I’m trying. I’m listening.
Isn’t it amazing how long 10 minutes can be? I hear ya.
PS I think guided meditations are great but there is so much benefit from just sitting like you do, without visualization. Both sitting meditation and visualization help. It took me a while before I could just sit and meditate though. For many people it is too difficult to sit without a guiding voice in background taking you someplace calming, I get that. Whatever works, works.
I think meditation is always helpful, but… I often forget. I love your guided chakra meditation, Thea! It really helped to center me when I needed it, and I’ll be using it again whenever I need to write something that makes me anxious or confused. It’s amazing how such a “simple” thing can make such a big difference. So, thank you for that. I’ll be checking out the other guided meditations as well, though the “Finish your book visualization” is something I’m not quite ready for (Beginning your book visualization might be more up my alley…) Also, thanks for featuring my art, you’re very generous!
Dear Mineke, I love featuring your art, it is a meditation in an of itself. You know I get that you are not ready for a “Finish Your Book” meditation and that you are so funny to say you need a “Begin Your Book Meditation”. But you know, after I stopped laughing I thought, “what a great idea Mineke!” I will work on just such a meditation. It is so hard to begin a book! Maybe I can help.
Thanks so much for contributing to the blog in all the good ways you do. I appreciate you.
Oh, that would be wonderful! Perhaps I’ll actually do it then, haha. I’ve had a vague idea for a book for about 15 years, and I have yet to write the first word…
Oh that sounds intriguing! I bet it’s a wonderful idea. Just blow a little on that spark, wonders await.
I can’t remember if you ever read this post, may stir up an idea or two for you if you haven’t yet. https://thecharmedstudio.com/how-to-easily-outline-your-first-book/
I love this post. Slowing down to meditate helps me focus on my purpose and always brings new ideas in. Such a beautiful post. 💖💖🙏😘
Well put Gale. Mediation does help writers slow down and come back to the original purpose of the piece. It’s a homecoming. 🏡 thanks for reading and letting me know.
Kristen Dunkelberger says
Great post, Thea! I really enjoyed these meditations. Plus, I have to admit that I really like your voice – it’s so soothing and warm, but not dull.;)
If you are curious about visualization, there’s a great book by Shakti Gawain, “Creative Visualization”. It’s a bit old now but pretty readily available – maybe even free online if I recall. I’ve used it for over 25 years (!) and always find the techniques helpful.
Oh wow Kirsten! I used to have a well worn copy of that Gawain book and a well worn copy of her second book, Living in the Light! Whoa time warp. I even had something by her on an old school cassette tape 🤭. Thanks so much for trying the meditations out and for your kind words about my pre-writing guided meditation.I appreciate it big time.
Sylvia Larkin says
Meditation and visualization are such powerful tool, Thea! They helped me clarify and achieve my goals over the years!
Sylvia thanks for letting me know. What is the difference between meditation and visualization?
Oh I found the answer. https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.mindbodygreen.com/articles/why-meditation-visualization-arent-the-same-and-how-to-use-them–21539
Kevin Doberstein says
I like to use Spiritual Meditation to help me connect with a deeper meaning than the material world. For me, it helps clear all of the built daily life crap that can creep up on you. Once the garbage dissolves, you are inspired to create and manifest. I like to use visualization to achieve goals or desired outcomes. I have found using visualization can be a powerful tool to help you achieve the things you hoped. When I use to perform publicly with my wood flutes, I would first visualize the performance beforehand. It would include from start to finish. It would help me play with more confidence. I like the quote, “Meditation can also get you to put the mental gun down” I also liked how you linked the hair conditioner with cleaning out the knots of writing.
LOL yes Kevin! Meditation does that for me too. It helps take so much of the garbage I’ve been clinging on to and pour it down the disposal, leaving more space to remember who I really am or at least who I aspire to be. I love that you use visualization for creative performance, that is brilliant. If top athletes do it why shouldn’t we? Your music is healing for others.
I wonder if you think there is a way to use visualization like that with writing?
And thanks so much for letting me know you enjoyed the kooky hair conditioner metaphor and that you related to “put the mental gun down.” You know how it is as a writer, we often leave out those kinds of things because they are so different, but they end up being the sentences that people relate to more than all the other “respectable” stuff we write huh?
We are just so hard on ourselves and impatient with ourselves.
YOU MAY WANT TO ACCESS MEDITATIONS ON YOUR SMARTPHONE>. 🙂
If you have trouble accessing the insight meditations on your laptop, open up this post on your phone and it should easily convert. Insight Timer grew so quickly they are having some problems with the tech on the desktop end.