Before I started on my incredible healing journey, I was a left-brained businesswoman and I treated myself as if I was a machine. My approach to life was strictly practical, logical, and rational.Read More
This article was originally posted at www.bringonlemons.blogspot.com as part of my WOW Journaling Power Blog Tour this October.Read More
My first book, a self-help memoir, Journaling Power: How To Create The Happy, Healthy Life You Want To Live launches Tuesday, September 27, 2016. And I want Y.O.U. to celebrate with me! Buy it today here www.journalingpowerbook.com and get lots and lots of bonuses.Read More
When I was younger, I loved the idea of journaling. I would watch on the movies or read about authors and the journals they kept. It seemed like it would hold the key to their creativity. The secrets of life were held in those scratchings. I adored the idea that I would leave behind a stack of books that would be pored over centuries from now and that my little life would transcend time. But whenever I tried, nothing was uncovered. No illuminations of wisdom would unleash themselves on the page. I was not destined to be a brilliant novelist who dealt with truth as seen by my eyes.
In fact, all I ever managed to write could be boiled down to three words: "Woe is me."
While there is a real and legitimate use and time for this sort of complaining, it was no real help to me. The reason, in retrospect, is simple, but I won't go through that now.
Recently I wanted to make some changes in my life and I heard mention of this website that helps a person form habits. Lift.do works on the premise that it takes 3 weeks to build a habit. There are designed plans available or you can create your own. One of the designed plans was 21 days of journaling. I figured this was a good time to try it again. The plan gave you all sorts of different prompts and some I loved, and some I didn't....love. But I did all 21 days and I was hooked. I wanted more.
So, I went in search. Googling writing prompts and journaling techniques, I came across several items that caught my eye. But the item that really stopped me in my tracks was the 27 Day Peace of Mind and Body Journal. I had no idea what I was doing, but I promised myself to just let go. Be honest. Be open. Share with the group. And trust Mari.
Mari is really the person who showed me what journaling is. She gave me structure. The prompts never let me stop at, "woe is me." I could still say that, but there was always a follow up. A, "What's next, then?" So, why had journaling never worked for me before? Because I never got to what is next.
But I am preaching to the converted at this time. I know that. So, I want to give two different ways to convince others. The first is funny and silly. People love to talk about how calm ducks are when you look at the part above the water. Underneath, however, those little webbed feet are moving a mile a minute. It is supposed to be a joke about the deceptive nature of things. But, I look at it differently. A duck puts all of her energy right where it needs to be. There is nothing wasted on top of the water. The effort is used just as it should be. This is journaling. The paddling I put into keeping Night Notes, or having an inner coach session allows me to be serene in all the other places. I love the paddling. I love the calm. I am, for all intents and purposes, a journaling duck.
The second way I look at journaling is a little more serious. It is based on an idea I have had for many years. No matter where I go, when I start to get close to new people one thing is consistent. Everybody has to do some growing up. Everyone! It didn't seem to matter the style of home or the quality of parents. They could have had the best parents in the entire world. Everyone has to do some self-parenting as an adult. I really don't know why this is. It just is. This is where keeping an active journal practice comes in. It is the exact perfect space to do that self-parenting! Got issues? Talk about them and the "what's next, then" question. Had a great day? Spend some time writing it down and reminding yourself how this feels so you can find more ways to keep it going. Have a friend that needs some help? Think of ways to help them. Want to be silly and playful? Give yourself the time to be that way. You get to finish the job of parenting and making a human life.
In the end, it all comes down to this. I deserve this time. My children deserve the me that comes out of my journal. My coworkers and friends and store clerks and fellow drivers and my neighbors all deserve my best.
So, I still haven't found a way to create a novel in my journal, but I do catch a glimpse of the me that I am making. I will take that trade every day.