Saturday, March 9, 2013

Gratitude Haiku

A week ago, I'd have been leading a workshop on gratitude haiku.  Why gratitude haiku, you ask?

First of all, a disclaimer.  I'm using the word "haiku" very loosely.  I understand that there's much more to haiku than the syllables per line (5-7-5).  But I was asked to talk about spiritual journaling, and the gratitude haiku was part of a list of ways to use your journal as a spiritual practice.

I also talked about regular gratitude journaling:  at the end of the day, write down 5 things that fill you with gratitude.  No doubt that it's a powerful practice.  But I wanted to be honest.  When I've kept this discipline for any length of time, my gratitude lists begin to seem quite similar.  As always, cultivating a quality of mindfulness does not come naturally to me.

I've only been doing the gratitude haikus for a few weeks, and they short-circuit my tendency to keep the same list.  I find myself paying attention and trying on subjects for haiku possibilities.  I find myself more lighthearted than I sometimes am when I'm keeping a gratitude journal--it's fun to write haikus.

Will this practice turn into drudgery eventually?  I have no idea.  Truthfully, I'm not likely to do this practice year after year.  But it's a good practice to take up occasionally.

1 comment:

Kathleen Cassen Mickelson said...

I love the idea of gratitude haiku. You're right that there's far more to serious haiku than the syllable count, but when doing a gratitude journal for personal growth, this little structure is a really nice nudge to think a little differently.

I keep a gratitude journal - it's a sporadic thing and it sits on my counter where I can see it all the time as a reminder - and it does push me to grouse less and consider how lucky I am more.