What is Haiku for You?
Haiku for You is a free, twelve-week, interactive blog-series that begins next Monday, May 11th 2020!
It’s for absolutely anyone with or without a writing background. As a writer for well-being, I am here to help you feel inspired throughout my upcoming posts. Most importantly, I want you to feel enabled to write for your own wellness. This is the first writing season of – hopefully – many more.
Why use haiku?
Writing can easily be used as a tool for mindfulness. For anyone who isn’t sure, mindfulness is the act of focusing on the present moment instead of becoming lost in too many thoughts or feelings. It is a therapeutic technique used to escape the noise of our busy lives and to help us feel grounded. Studies prove that acts of mindfulness are conducive to positive well-being when we practise them on a daily basis. You don’t even have to move from your desk or sofa.
Some forms of writing are more suitable for mindfulness than others. One of the most effective forms just happens to be the Japanese poetic form, haiku. Haiku, is traditionally a short, three-line poem, consisting of only seventeen syllables:
5 on the first line 7 on the second line 5 on the third line
Haiku focuses on the simplicity of a single moment observed in the present. This makes it the perfect opportunity for writing ourselves towards better well-being. Traditionally, the Japanese idea was that haiku could be uttered in a single breath. This fits perfectly with our well-being objective to create a small space to breathe. It allows us to escape the chaos of work or home-life, and to keep stress and anxiety at bay.
So, how will Haiku for You work?
I am inviting you to join me for twelve weeks on a haiku holiday.
Every Monday, I will publish a Haiku for You blog post online – right here! It will talk about how haiku can exercise mindfulness within our daily lives and include a new inspirational theme that you can use as a prompt. As a guide, I will provide a background about haiku and include some examples written by myself.
– To honour approximately thirty minutes every day, purely for yourself and this act of mindfulness. (Don’t worry if it’s a little more or less. The priority is that you relax.)
– Trust the theme I provide and allow a suitable moment to bubble to the surface.
– Find a pen and paper, or sit in front of your computer and consider the provided theme in this moment.
– Write three lines, following the provided haiku structure.
– Feel content that you have committed an act of self-care via the medium of writing.
This is as interactive as you want it to be. You can either remain anonymous or share your daily haiku in the comments section below each weekly blog post.
For the purpose of well-being, and contrary to the many writers who break away from this form for artistic rationale, I recommend the use of Haiku’s traditional Japanese three-line and seventeen-syllable structure. My reason for this is that it is an opportunity to mimic the kind of pattern, routine and mindfulness that is conducive to living a mentally-healthy lifestyle.
Just as it says on the tin, haiku is here to help you. Now, for those who weren’t sure what haiku was until a moment ago, don’t let that put you off. This is not just for writers; it’s for anyone who wants to improve their well-being by introducing a quick and easy happiness habit into their daily life.
Click here to find out how to write haiku. Feel free to refer back to these guidelines as often as you like.
As with any artistic therapeutic practice, writing can never be prescribed as a substitute for other forms of healthcare. This should only be used as an addition to any mental health practices you are currently participating in. However, I would like to encourage you to use writing to capture moments before they disappear.
I hope you enjoy the haiku journey to positive well-being! See you back here on May 11th! Alternatively, check the Haiku for You page for updates.