Write with Ruth
Facilitated by Ruth Czirr
About Guided Journaling
You don't need to "be a writer," you don't need to "keep a diary," and you don't need to know what you're doing before you sit down. You may think journaling means making a record of what has happened or how it makes you feel. But in guided journaling, you are working and experiencing as you write.
This kind of writing can bring a CLICK of clarity or release, or a burst of creativity or humor. In the last 60 years several teachers have developed methods that can surprise you with their usefulness and ease. The best way to understand this power is to try a sample of the work yourself.
Ruth's methods protect your privacy. She gives instructions and tips; you choose what to write about, knowing there is no one evaluating your work and no pressure to "share with the group." Why do we work in a group setting, then? Many people find that writing seems easier when you have made an appointment to take time and focus, and when you have the quiet support of others who are also working. You have opportunities to comment on your experience, or to raise questions, but what you write belongs to you -- not even the facilitator needs to know your words or your topics.
Guided journaling offers ways to make your writing safer and more productive. You learn how to use guardrails and containers for your work, and ways to soothe yourself when you are writing about painful or difficult things. As you get familiar with many techniques, you can choose the kinds of writing that works best for you. If you have a counselor or therapist, share this description with them. People often find that journaling is a natural support for their work in therapy or recovery. It's also a powerful tool for your professional development and for coping with difficult situations and people.
Ruth has been using guided journaling since the 1970s and teaching it since the 1908s. Her workshops draw on methods from many different teachers and researchers. She has studied with Kathleen Adams at the Center for Journal Therapy, and is a Certified Instructor for Adams' Journal to the Self® workshop course. Ruth offers writing events from an hour to a day or a weekend retreat, and can also tailor a program for a group
(eg, students, caregivers, church workers, activists, people going through life transitions, a group of friends). You can get a taste of the methods at any of her short events before you commit to a course.
It was not what I was expecting,
but I mean that in a good way...
This is definitely helpful for me
to process my daily frustrations.
Ruth's approach is thoughtful
Tools I wish I had earlier in life.
Ruth is gentle, humorous, practical and spiritual all at once...
Give yourself the gift of quiet and time, and some structure
to hear your own voice.
Let Ruth introduce you
to this beautiful practice.
Helps me process challenges
in my life, situations at work,
and lessens the darkness
of grief... Ruth made writing manageable - easy to get started with her prompts
JOURNAL to the SELF® Workshops
Ruth is also a Certified Instructor for the Journal to the Self® Workshop -- a 12-hour course that teaches you how to use guided expressive writing for personal growth, problem-solving, self-care, and creative expression. It has been offered since 1985 by Kathleen Adams, a pioneer in unleashing the power of structured expressive writing.
The 12 hours can be spaced over several weeks, concentrated into a weekend retreat, or arranged in other ways. Private workshops can be arranged for an organization, a church, or just a group of friends.
This workshop requires 6 people who commit to attend, and can accommodate up to 12. Sign up HERE to be contacted when a group is forming in the Little Rock area or on Zoom, or to inquire about private events.
A workshop can also be customized around a theme, teaching the basic exercises but using prompts that help you explore an area of significance in this creative and supportive way. Common examples are life transitions and decisions - spirituality - medical challenges - holidays and fresh starts - decluttering and downsizing. and many others are possible.
For Professionals (and Students in the Professions)
Health professionals, educators, attorneys, and technical professionals praise the value of structured expressive writing and reflective writing. The Journal to the Self® toolbox teaches you methods that work for a variety of brains, temperaments, purposes, and situations. Even five minutes of writing can be important in a difficult day.
For many kinds of professionals, the methods you learn and practice in this course have triple benefits.
First, as is true for anyone, journaling supports your resilience, healing, personal growth, and creative development.
It can help you adjust your boundaries and and integrate your jobs with your life. From your first experience as a student through new workplaces and changing roles, guided journaling can be a lifeline in times of heavy stress, moral challenges, career transitions, or exhaustion.
Second, these writing tools can support your professional work. Your journaling provides a creative and trustworthy channel for reflection and problem-solving. It helps you untangle clinical and supervisory challenges and reconcile competing demands. Its safety and privacy can be especially valuable for professionals who work in isolation, in small towns, without a mentor or professional peer group, or in highly confidential situations.
Finally, when you are working with a client, supervisee, or student, understanding the "Journal Ladder" system helps you select prompts to encourage a particular person's writing and processing at a particular time.
A workshop group made up of people in the same profession or type of work can add richness to your journaling and also help you find specific ways to use it professionally. As a bonus, it can introduce you to like-minded colleagues. A group built around a general field, but with members from a variety of speciality areas, organizations, denominations, etc., can provide a very unusual balance of confidentiality and collegiality.