Video: Journaling to Heal and Change Your Life

Author - Mari L. McCarthy
Published - Jun 13, 2017 9:40:00 AM

The following video is an interview by Sarah Chipperfield of Mari L. McCarthy about her book and therapeutic journaling and how it has helped Mari overcome obstacles in life.   


The following is the transcript of the video:

Sarah:               Hi, everybody, I am Sarah Chipperfield and welcome to the happy, healthy and hot web series where I have experts sharing tips on how to create a life and body you love. Today my expert is Mary McCarthy and she is going to be talking to us about how to create the life you want every day. Welcome Mary. Thank you so much for joining us.

Mari:                Well, thank you for having me, Sarah. Nice to meet you.

Sarah:               Yeah, nice to meet you too. Um, so mary, I just want to introduce you quickly to everybody. Um, so you are the founder of create right now and you are also the author of an international bestselling book that we're going to be talking about today called journaling power and it's basically how to create the happy healthy life you want to live, which couldn't be more perfect and more in alignment with my topic. So I'm so excited to have you on the web series a and let's get started. So can you tell us how you got started with journaling?

Mari:                Uh, yes, it's probably, well, it's getting close to 20 years ago about, it was like 1998. Um, I had, uh, an ms multiple sclerosis exacerbation or I lost feeling on the right side of my body and I needed a way. I had to have a procedure. I'm, I'm very organized, very disciplined, very business oriented. So I had to have a procedure to teach me how to break with my left hand and synchronistically. I ran into someone who recommended Julia Cameron, who wrote the book the artist's way. And in it she has a procedure called morning pages. And what you do is first thing, every morning as quickly as you can till the time you wake up and get out of bed is you write three pages of stream of consciousness writing just about whatever. So, uh, I thought, okay, that sounds good and logical to me.

Mari:                And it, um, it was very, very fascinating because it's so I've found very quickly that is so much more than just physical therapy. A one I was able to, uh, become lefthanded very quickly because one of the things in the process of the, uh, the journaling is that a lot of things from my childhood came up and I remembered a, that the nuns at St Bernard's grade school changed me. I originally was lefthanded, so that's why it became very easy for me to become lefthanded because that's what was so, um, so, and, and then I just, I kept going with the morning pages because it really is therapy, emotions, memories, thoughts, all kinds of things kept coming up and I was able through the whole process to really, uh, get through, really processed the memories and find out that, Oh yes, that's what happened. And Oh, I can see now that is a seven year old girl. I would interpret it, you know, personally, shamefully, or whatever. So it's a long story short. That's how I got started into journaling.

Sarah:               Wow. What an amazing story. The fact that you started with it to, to, to gain strength and the ability to, to write lefthanded and then you started actually processing. So how did this affect your life? And did it affect your ms or, or how you, um, you know, kind of worked through this, um, this episode?

Mari:                It definitely helped me understand and see how much I was living in my head and not in my body, you know, just I was my whole life adult life had been with a, running my own business or being some form of business. I was always running, rushing and processing and analyzing and doing all those, those types of things. And this is, I mean, I took care of myself. I mean, I just, I was always pretty good in getting exercise and all that type of thing. But I think that the main thing that the, the journaling taught me first off was really how much I really blocked myself off from the rest of my body. Physically, spiritually and emotionally. Yes.

Sarah:               So is there, is there a right way to journal? Is there a wrong way to journal? And how did you get started? How did you know how to do this?

Mari:                Uh, I really just took the lead from the morning pages. I just, I just find that there's something mystical, magical, wonder, wonderful about the, excuse me, I'm the journaling process and I just, again, I just got into my intuition and just really trusted my gut and just went with the flow. It's just like you and I'm basically got into a conversation with or what about this and how do I do this at all, all that type of thing. And it's just like I just found by just doing it as much as Nike says that, that the answers would come up or would lead me where I need to go or, you know, consider this or whatever. So it's just, uh, the, the only thing as far as the right way to journal is that it, uh, to get the most out of out of it is to make it pin to page everyday.

Mari:                I'll you how one does it, where they do it in the morning and the evening on the bus did that. That's totally up to them as I would say there's only one right way to journal and it's your way. And I had the experience to that when I first encountered, when I now know to be my inner critic, I just got really, really freaked and really, really scared. So I thought I wouldn't go back to just, you know, any, doing my journaling on the keyboard. And it was like totally different. So not nothing was happening. My gone so deep. And so, uh, you know, expansive into, by doing it pen to paper. That's why my whole thing is just pen to page everyday. That's just. And then after that, you know what you want to do, where you want to do it, how you want to do it. That's totally up to you.

Sarah:               I felt the same way when I first started journaling a, I feel like anytime I do it on, on the computer, if I have more of like a perfectionist mindset for thinking about it as, as a, as a project, as a, as a working mail, as something that needs to be free of spelling mistakes or. And I go back and I edit. Whereas with writing, there's just something so freeing about writing whatever comes into your mind rather than trying to edit it so that it would sound good to somebody else. Yeah. I really found there to be such a big, um, a big difference between the two.

Mari:                Oh, definitely. Like I said, and I think it's, to me it's a difference between, um, like, like talk to me that the keyboard is talk therapy. I mean, and you need to attend this year is part of the process, but the thing is we need to get into our heart, soul and spirit and the way you do that is pen to page.

Sarah:               So can you talk to us about some of the benefits of journaling?

Mari:                Um, well, I could probably probably take a long time. I can't, I, at this point in my career, my career, I've not come across anything it can't help you with as far as one reducing stress because, you know, we all carry around all kinds of stress of um, so that, you know, doing that, that thing just unleashing and getting the garbage out on the page and the other of our bodies. That's one good thing. Um, I have, I've designed and created a lot of ebooks around things such as money, uh, a loving your body, uh, all different aspects of, of living. So that I, like I said, I said I have not encountered anything that journaling can help you with as far as problem solving, goal setting. And like I said, I have found that with me since I now see with the, uh, the journaling, the tie in that I am a whole person.

Mari:                I am a spiritual and emotional and a physical person. I now see the relationship and I'm basically a feeling physically and emotionally and spiritually feel that I am healthier now than ever. I just really, I'm into, I really feel like I'm, I'm into the cells of my body. It's just like I said, good because back to what I said earlier, but I just really feel like I'm living in and really understanding what my, my universe, if you will, is all about. And it's like, oh my goodness. And I'm constantly. And this another thing about the journaling that, uh, it's not only helps you with some of the things, I mean self discovery is just phenomenal on everyday. It's just like, oh, interesting, I knew that or remember that or whatever. And to me the benefits are ongoing and longstanding because you may not have the answer to your problem or your question or whatever at the page that at that moment, but this is like, you know, there's, there's something that, it, it does something with our brain and our process that, oh, you said taking a shower and it's like, oh, this, what that was, or I have an idea for such and such and you know, it's a stimulant is, it's a real fantastic tool for helping us live our life and create what we want and deal with the challenges, whatever level it's, it's on everyday.

Sarah:               Well, and I also think that it allows us to, um, to produce our life. So honestly, because it's between us and, and, and our journal, right? Like so, so there's no filtering things to make it sound better. It's just being true and honest and, and you almost get to help yourself process things at your own pace know, and you're allowed to bring up things and you don't have to worry about someone else's opinion of you or, or what someone else has to say as feedback or that somebody else would be judging you. It's almost this beautiful release where you're allowed to just be 100 percent yourself. You're allowed to show up with your flaws. You're allowed to talk about your fears in 100 percent judgment free place. And, and, and I always say to people that so many of these anxieties or fears or limiting beliefs that they bring into their life or to their health and fitness program, which is kind of what I focus on, uh, with them, a lot of these are just fears and things that they feel so alone and feeling.

Sarah:               Once you put it out there and you start to accept yourself for who you are, it becomes so much easier to move forward. So I, I, I love that you've kind of created such a great tool for that. So I was reading on your website some of the, some of the things that the journaling helps people with and I had read about relieving physical pain. Can you talk a little bit about how journaling helped you with your ms and some of the, some of the pains and the struggles that you have gone through or did go through and how journaling helped you with that?

Mari:                Uh, certainly. Um, about 13, 14 years ago, I was on a, uh, a drug, uh, if there's a shot that a nurse had to come once a week and give me a shopkins. I still didn't have the feeling back on my right side, my body and one on Thursday night she, she didn't come and uh, two days for the next two days after that, I felt fantastic because when I was on the drug, two days afterwards I would, I would really lose the day because I would just get, I'd have side effects and flus symptoms and all that type of thing. So I thought. And by that time I was journaling probably for about six years and I thought, wow, it's like talking about how many realized that I wanted a quality of life and everything if you listened to everything, the doctors, the medical profession and all that type of thing.

Mari:                It's just like. So I just really started doing more, more reading into instinct that the drugs are basically dealing with symptoms and pains and things like that. So it's just, uh, so I decided to get off, did not go back on, on drugs. Um, so that and that brought out new symptoms. But there were things like I, I started dialoguing with my body and I, and I got into so many things that, you know, okay, I was having pain in my hip or leg or whatever and I would just dialogue with parts of my, my body and just really find out how deep seeded the things were coming up from childhood and, or, you know, things that I thought that I was like, I thought that or whatever. So I, I guess what I was saying, I really see the tie in that. It's that what's going on inside of us is certainly way beyond just the physical.

Mari:                So I, so it really helped me. I didn't see the need for, you know, anything, uh, you know, and anything else. So like I said, and besides to get, to be fair to the medical profession, all the drugs that Raul were things that were there were hoping, kind of, sort of, you know, modulate the symptoms or the inflammation or whatever. And to me it's just like, no, I don't think so. I think I'll just take a look at what's out there and it got me more into the researching and I found that uh, there was new information and studies about diets and so I completely changed my diet and I wasn't getting sinus infections and headaches and all that kind of stuff. So I didn't got off of over the counter stuff about eight years ago. So it's just a, you know, I think it's just the, the derailing just really helped me again because it's connection connecting us to our, to who we really are and all the parts of buses just like, well no, that doesn't make, it doesn't make sense or that doesn't feel right.

Mari:                I mean all those things that we were never supposed to talk about how we felt or all this. So it just. So getting into the, dealing with the pain, seeing personalizing the pain, if you will, and just seeing as a, as a person to be having a discussion and understanding of what was going on. It led me to an unbelievable areas that I never would have thought. And it's like I said, it changes in the Diet and things like that and just really I now here to a test that my attitude and my processing and like you said earlier, the fact that I don't live in fear that I'm, I'm still nothing done, a little scared, quiet, shy girl. Now I've processed through that. I know more who I really am and this is like, I don't have to keep carrying around all those old thoughts, feelings and things that or misconstrued as, as a, as a child.

Mari:                So it, so I find that, you know, it's like I said, the fact that really when people talk about the flu or a cold or aggravating or, or whatever, my first thing is always to talk about, well, have you talked to your body about it now as opposed to spending our talking about what do I use x, Y, Z, or do I use nucel x or all that kind of stuff. We're just so much into that whole thing of Oh God, the pain got to get a pill. Uh, so I just think so I attribute that to the journaling us as I said, you know, there's just something about the tie in to me and it says like, it gets me into areas that, how I thought that or, you know, it's like, well, isn't that interesting if I. and I definitely helped, uh, changing the Diet and getting off of the milk and things like that.

Mari:                Definitely helped my singing career. Oh my goodness. So it's just a, so it's a. So to answer your question, that just has an unbelievable thing and I think it's just, it's just really a, a change in perspective, a change in the way we deal with ourselves. We were just so into the habit of listening to the, uh, this commercial for this drug or whatever. It's just like we just need to take the time for ourselves and just say what's really going on here and you know, as I'm thinking about it from a spiritual, emotional, physical aspect rather than just joe, that one little part of your. Yeah, your lift a part of your brain.

Sarah:               Well and, and even like you said, making changes to your diet. If you're not keeping track of that on paper, you'll forget about some of these little changes and these little changes can actually have huge results. Like you said, even with dairy, you know, I, I sang in choir for years and years as, you know, in elementary and junior high and, and I know, you know, being lactose intolerant, what a huge difference that made to my singing voice it, it does, you know, dairy causes different, uh, side effects for four different people and you know, if you're not keeping track of these things and that's how I help people with their, with their new meal plans is really focusing on not just what you think you remember about what you ate, but actually how long and so you can have something to compare it to, um, whether it's um, you know, working out and keeping track of like what weights you were using when you were doing what workout and how many reps you could get in because your brain will tell you that you can't do that.

Sarah:               And if you look back and you go, wow, I actually, I use 15 pounds. I thought I was only using tens. Things like that where if you don't have a log for them, whether it's food, whether it's weights, whether it's changes that you're making, your daily routine, your mind will trick you into thinking that you haven't done them yet or that you don't remember how many times you could do it. And so it's such a beautiful way to, um, to keep track of these new patterns and see if you're seeing any results that are directly related to that, but also to have something to look back on and see how far you've come when you need some of these changes. It's really a beautiful tool to gauge where you're at. Um, so yeah, I, I, I, I love that. I also love the correlation that you said between relieving physical pain, being able to sit there and track, okay, how do I actually feel like if you were to break it down onto a scale of one to 10, what is your mind tell you when you're in pain, you know, to, to use these things as an opportunity.

Sarah:               Because I always say to people, if they, if they find that they cheat on their diet or their meal plan, I should, I should call it, or if they've had kind of a more emotional relationship with food in the past, I always tell them to have craving to just sit down and think about it. So journaling is a great option and just say, okay, why am I craving, what am I hoping to get from this? What's the usual outcome, you know, like, just sit there and, and, and almost play it out as if you were talking to somebody and it does shed so much light on, on where that connection is with your mind and your body because it, it really does have a deep connection. And once you can see your patterns, you can actually be clear to, to being able to break them or change them into a more healthier, healthier way.

Mari:                Oh, definitely. One of the courses that I designed is called love your body. And one of the things that I have a dude, the people that take it, uh, is keep a holistic food journal. Basically keep track of what you ate, but where you were, how are you feeling, what to happen in your life, all that so people see the time because as you know, we've just so much been raised and taught to we, we've been treating our bodies as if it were a car or something at all. Oh, it's breaking down again. All I gotta do, take it into the shop or getting a pill, go sing a dog, whatever that, that type of. And it's just really, once you've done your journaling and you are in your body and you can explore everything from, you know, like I say in and tie in the emotions and the, of the, the whole have a holistic look at yourself that your body and the pain or what's happening is it's not somebody something out there.

Mari:                It's in here and you have the power, uh, and talents and intelligence, whatever you need to question that. And I love what you said about the dialoguing with the journal because that's what I tell people. Your journal loves to answer questions. So just sit down and ask, okay, what's going on here? Or what am I feeling, or you know, why did so and so happened to this or, you know, oh my goodness, I really didn't feel good having that Indian food and those types of things. So it's just like I said, and seeing the, uh, your, uh, your journal as your, your friend, you're a therapist and someone that you can just sit down and have a heart to heart with.

Sarah:               Yeah, I mean, it's free therapy that. Yes, you think about it that way. That's kind of what I've said to people about fitness. For me, um, you know, and, and finding proper nutrition that, that works for my body is, it's, it's the cheapest form of therapy that I've ever found because you're, you're, you're feeling what your body actually needs to be able to perform at a level that you want it to and you're learning about yourself in the process. You're being proactive about changing your life, which is a big confidence builder rather than it just being, oh, I suffer from this, oh, I, you know, I can't do this. I can accomplish this. I'm even trying to teach yourself how to write with your left hand. That's, that's huge, right? And put the, it came from a, from a need and then you realize that you can actually do these things because you were being proactive and you're saying, okay, how can I help my situation right now?

Sarah:               And you know, even getting back to the journaling, like you said, about how your stomach doesn't agree with a certain food. Um, life I think is all about finding out what works for you and sometimes what works for you for, for awhile won't work for you later. Like I've noticed my diet after having a baby is very different than my, you know, my meal plans now that I've got a son and I'm, I'm busier. But you know, your metabolism changes and tracking those things is such a great way of even figuring out some intolerances that again, if you're not tracking these things, it's very easy for your mind to forget what you, you know, that bag of chips that you had. And then to see, maybe you might have gluten intolerance and you know, you notice that you get really, really tired, but you're not putting the two together because that's just part of your routine. So yeah, I, I, I love that, uh, you know, that you're bringing up all of these really great points. Um, something else that I wanted to touch on was, um, you've said before that um, that journaling helps to boost memory loss. So can you touch on that a little bit

Mari:                to me? I think it's just the, the fact that you're in a root routine that and you're just constantly connecting to your yourself and again, just really treating yourself as far as, okay, brain, Neil, what's going on? What's happening? And not looking at it from a, a, you know, a technical, old MRI, Xyz type of thing, but take a look at, talk to me. You know, what, what's happening, what's the, all the time. And we, we see that. It's just like, I mean, and your body will tell you what's, what's going on. And it's just like, I think that we've been actually just get into. Oh, I forgot. Oh yeah. We were just so into journaling. Gives you the opportunity to sit down and decide, oh, I'm really scared. I'm losing my mind and just be honest and go through that process that, uh, that there are certainly organic things that are going on.

Mari:                But I think there's a gentleman, I'm just reading a book of his, I think he's a neurobiologist and he, his book is called the, uh, the biology of belief. And just, uh, again, just getting into understanding our brain, how we think our memory and there's, you know, inside of here is, is not what everyone says. Like I said, what's going on in your body is very different than what's going on in my body. And so as far as the helping of the memories, just like, let's listen to investigate that, you know, what's, what's happening wire, you know, oh, you know, rather than beating yourself up, oh, I'm, I'm forgetting this or does it, or this is, you know, what's, what's happening here? And just exploring that. And then, as you know, probably from your experience, then you'll see something on the internet or a book will pop up or whatever and you'll be able to read that.

Mari:                Oh, isn't that interesting? Well, like I said to me, I was just looking with one of the things that was looking at it as like, Oh yeah, because I'm now medicare eligible and all the and you know, the whole thing, society puts them up. Oh, getting old, all those kinds of things and assistant. I'm just really curious. And then that's how Bruce Lipton's book came up. It's like, you know, tie in of, you know, how, how we think, how we behave, our attitude, all those internal things affect us physically. So it's going because, and again, we think everything is a direct line that a to b and all that kind of stuff. And uh, but it is, it's not necessarily just have to do the investigation and the investigation, the curiosity, the exploration and just really see that too. I think that, that come to find out more of the um, uh, the tie in of nutrition.

Mari:                Uh, and there are things that, you know, it's not like, uh, you can, uh, um, or is there something other than just taking a drug? But again, it's to me the journaling is just a more therapy and therapy from a physical point of view on a holistic point of view and it's just like, it really is, as I said, is this really fascinating to just explore that rather than, you know, our continual behavior pattern of, oh, I'm so dumb and stupid. Oh, I'm getting old, I'm gonna, get that's like, listen to what you're saying and then have it, have the discussion with a journal if you do it consistently and as a routine and you'll get into the pattern and it's like somehow it's magical. It opens up the, the energy or whatever. And as you, as I said, the, you know, the book or the resource or you'll meet someone, they'll talk, talk about how they are having memory, memory challenges and this is what they did and all. Did you read this book or hear about this person or. Yeah. So it's just a, it's really really fascinating.

Sarah:               Yeah, I completely agree with you. It's, it allows us to, um, you know, to be as much of a detective into our own lives is as we want to be. Um, you know, I've at certain points when I'm struggling with a specific thing, you know, I'll even write down, you know, almost like a who, where, what, why and how, right? Like, around a specific question, right? Like, why is this affecting me right now? What can I do to change it? Uh, you know, who do I think of or, or what time in my life does have I done this before, what was the outcome, what did I do, you know, so, so you can really go as in depth as, as you want to on any specific topic and allow yourself to work through it, um, as honestly or, or as much as, as you want, which I think helps us because it gets us thinking about other times that we've, that we've dealt with that and we're such an instant gratification world where I feel like people will do investigative work if it has to do with their, with their job.

Sarah:               Uh, you know, or something that's going to make them money, but I think that, uh, when it comes to themselves, a lot of times we just think that that's the way that we are without asking any questions as to why we would instantly, you know, choose this pattern whenever we're faced with the same thing. So yeah, I, I, I love that. And, and even just the, um, the act of, of writing every day, um, I don't know how that could not, uh, you know, help you with your, your brain stimulation or you know, or memory because you're, you're retaining a proper spelling of words. You're not relying on spell check, you know, and it doesn't matter if you spell them wrong, but you're constantly thinking, which, um, you know, my, my Nana, she passed away in her nineties and she was sharp as a whip, like, or, you know, as an attack or however you want to say it, right.

Sarah:               She was, she, she did crosswords every single day. She played scrabble, she did crosswords, and I mean this woman had an answer and a funny reply and she was witty and sarcastic and she never lost that. And I think it was because every single day she did something that challenged her mind and you could see that. Um, so yeah, I, I love that. Um, so can you tell us some success stories that you've heard from either clients of yours or a, you know, people who have bought your book and I kind of left comments or sent you emails on some of the ways that, that journaling, uh, and through your book have kind of changed their lives or enhance their lives?

Mari:                Yes, there, there are many, many, many ways and I think that's a, to me that is the most gratifying part of my job is to, to hear that it's just like, oh, I get it, you know, and I mean, I mean I've heard had everything from one woman took one of my courses, I think it was probably a love your body or one of the books and uh, uh, she was able to get into, you know, a dissatisfied satisfaction with uh, her job and life and all the guys stuff and the things is completely changed and became a certified yoga teacher. So it's just because she got into her heart and soul and what her passions were and what, you know, what, yes, this is what I want to do with my, with my life. Uh, so that was exciting. There were people find out that the, the able, the ability to just have some time and spend some time with themselves and find out that the person they think they are and who they really are are two totally different people.

Mari:                I'm in, I, and you know, the whole thing of, oh, I can't write, I can't sing. I didn't do this. I had a bad childhood. And uh, but going through the process of, uh, of the journaling, it's just like, oh my goodness, I've met my true self and who I am. And it's like, oh, and I can do that and Duh, Duh. I found that I, I have a really have an interest in such and such or, or whatever. And then people have written in the yes, I see now that I'm really down to my last pill that I still feel like I need it for, you know, for whatever condition, but gotten off of, you know, a whole slew of drugs. So it's just a. and I'm, I'm feeling better, I'm eating better, sleeping, all that type of thing. So they run the gamut of, of results that people get are just fantastic,

Sarah:               well, and that they can sit there and be really proud of themselves for cheating because this is about getting more in tune with yourself and your body and listening to the cues, um, or being willing and courageous enough to really start to go deeper into, um, you know, some of the areas of your life that you really want to see change in. I mean, if you tend to always attract the wrong people, uh, you know, maybe that's a great sign to you to sit down and, and, and journal a little bit about, okay, so what, what did I find attractive about these relationships? Why did I stay, what did I get out of them? And start to see if there is a pattern there that's yours. Or if there's a pattern there and in what you attract, you know, it's as simple as, as that where people could go to counseling. I'm waiting for someone else to come up with this answer, but you're the only person that knows your body as well as you do. Right? And so it's just such a beautiful opportunity to be able to, um, to try and solve some of these questions that maybe you've been waiting for someone else to, uh, to come up with the answer that resonates the best with you. And sometimes you're the only one that can do that.

Mari:                Definitely. I think you mentioned the word I so much because. And I think too that just the, the biggest challenge with journaling is because it is a self full experience, you know, and the whole thing about the way we were taught and reinforced by society, the we're supposed to be out there saving the rest of the world. And that's the whole thing too, is just getting past all the fear and the crazy thing that we literally have been carrying around in our, the cells of our beings since we were kids. And it's just really just taking the time for yourself. And it's okay. And this. And it turns out that when you do your journaling a consistency, you consistently go see, well the experts, spiritual gurus and every everyone say, yeah, if you tend to yourself first and take care of yourself, wow, there's so much more energy, creativity, whatever, so that you can, you, you can share what you've, you know, you've found what you're telling us everything or with the world.

Mari:                And if people decide to partake of, of you know, what you have to offer, fine. If, if they don't, it's their choice. And I think just getting that, that clarity of this is me, that's the rest of the world because we're so much living as if we're just doing are part of the world. But it's just like we get the opportunity with journaling to get back to who we are, see all our talents and possibilities and all that type of and see that, oh wow. By reach a rewiring our, our thoughts and our feelings and all that type of thing. Then we can then we can say, do this differently, can do the such and such store, like you said earlier about, well, it's just like a into my life so we can be much more self centered and that's a good thing because, you know, it is our life.

Sarah:               Well, and I also love about journaling that um, it doesn't matter how old you are, what generation you grew up in a or what you're going through in your life. Like, uh, you know, I grew up very much in a generation where we're really sharing a lot and you know, the, the people younger than me or some people could consider it to be oversharing on media and that's, that comes with its own set of issues and problems. So you know, you've got the ability to journal about that. You've got the ability to journal. If you were raised in a generation where you never talked about your problems and you have more of an outlet to do that. And I mean at every stage in your life there is an opportunity to journal because no two days are the same. If you're retired, that is a whole different feeling, you know, it's, it's almost like when you become a first time parent, your whole life becomes something totally different and you know, the things that you were known for before, you're not known for anymore and you've got different responsibilities or, or different things to do with your time.

Sarah:               So it's, it's beautiful that you could actually have a reference to go back to and see kind of how you felt when you were going through some of these phases and stages. But it's journaling. You should be doing it when you're feeling great and when you're struggling because it's a beautiful way to, uh, to get that energy out because that negative energy will make you sick. It, the majority of us hold our stress and our stomach and it leads to digestive issues. It leads to lower back pain. It leads to, um, you know, just different. Um, it breeds, I'm something different than a, that lightness and that I'm a happiness breeds in someone. It's the same reason why we're more attracted to happy people. And, and that positive energy that somebody has said just that, that lightness that comes from within that I think has a lot to do with personal development. And this is a, this is a massive, massively important form of personal development.

Mari:                Definitely. Yes. And the thing, the key is, is the routine. And I think again, because we have such a history of the negativity, all the things that were so, you know, issues that are still in ourselves that still need to be the process that we just have to trust ourselves, that we have to continually be giving the message to ourselves that we're number one, we're important and things like that. And the thing, the best way to do that is have a routine.

Sarah:               So in saying that, how, um, what do you recommend for people who are just getting started with journaling or who have tried drilling and feel like they weren't successful? How do you, um, you know, encourage them to get going? Like do you set kind of a, a time limit where they should be journaling for x amount of time for, you know, the first week? Or do you just say, try it for 30 days and commit this amount of time to add

Mari:                a couple of different suggestions. The one that I'm of my most favorite one is, is to sit down with your journal and ask who am I today instead of a time period safe, you know, a page of five minutes, whatever, and then just free write a. and I think that that's a. or do go the morning pages, routine routine. Several people have read my book journaling power since that's how I got started. I thought, oh, that's really it. It's not. I mean you just sit down and you right now you don't think of. So you just just do it. Um, so it's again, it just goes back to what, what do you feel like, and just in writing it down, be it the morning pages or just asking it a question and then does writing, writing, just, just the whole process of writing will start giving you some clues as to what do you feel like doing

Sarah:               and being honest like it. You say you said that an immediately I kind of go, Ooh, I like that. Who am I? Because I know some days I would sit there and say I'm a stressed out mess and we need to say that stuff. I know there's been a few times where I've, you know, gone to, uh, to write things down like that and I almost feel like I need to edit it because that's not, you know, this, this happy, healthy a coach inside of me. But you can't always feel fantastic. You can't always feel on top of it. You have to have those, this kind of off days to kind of reassess your life and say, okay, what worked today? What didn't work? How can I approach this differently next time? And by being honest about that, you'll realize that those bad days are, those low days are nothing compared to how they were before and nothing compared to how they were before.

Sarah:               You were willing to be honest about them and, and try and kind of figure out what it was that triggered. You know, it could be that my little guy and I didn't get enough sleep last night because we were a little bit too busy. Um, I had him in, you know, doing for activities a week and I had them on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday. And so I kind of thought, okay, this, this was a really busy. So now I'm trying to still do for activities a week, but I'm putting two on Tuesday and Thursday. So now we've got, you know, the Monday and the Friday that have those flex days. And it's saying, okay, if that kind of felt like it was a little stressful, how does this feel? So same thing only I've just changed how my schedule is, but you know, if, if you're not looking at, um, at what maybe felt a little overwhelming, then you can't make those small changes that could end up being the perfect mix for you. Yeah. So yeah, the, I mean,

Mari:                the honesty is, is the key. And, and, and you just have to show up as you are. It's like, I always say that the, uh, your journal is a come as you are party, you know, if it's like if you're in your pajamas or whatever, it's just like, and the thing that, the key is, is to do it and do it honestly because again, it's a change of behavior because we're so used to, you know, our, our mind and the trickster in and telling us and following us and doing all those types of things. So I just think that again, it's just really just trust yourself and just go for it.

Sarah:               Yeah. Don't be afraid to get to know yourself. I think so many people now are, um, you know, realizing that, um, that there's a lot of times in life where they filter themselves or make themselves into chameleons, whether it's at work or whether it's, you know, some of the friends that you realizing that maybe you're outgrowing but you're still trying to fit in with them. And um, you know, life is all about growing and changing and sometimes we need to make new friends or try out a different career. And um, the more in tune you are with yourself and the more that you get to a point where you accept yourself for your flaws and your quirks and you might just be getting into, you know, people might just be thinking about journaling, but they're really scared because they don't know how to, you know, start out or they've, they've tried it before and they,

Mari:                the whole list of it. It's just basically that f word, f e a R.

Sarah:               Yeah. Yeah. And so, I mean, this is all about just saying, Hey, I'm going to try this. The worst thing that can happen is that you get to know yourself better. You know, you accept yourself a little bit more because literally the worst thing that can happen, you can journal for five minutes a day. You could journal for two minutes. You could just journal whatever. Like you said, who am I today? It can be as quick or as in depth as you want. So yeah, I just, I love that this is all about, um, you know, accepting who you are, where you want to be, uh, and, and really creating the life that you want and getting happier. Um, can you tell us what is your biggest source of happiness in your life right now and how much time and energy do you spend on it?

Mari:                Um, my biggest source of happiness is my singing. I love music and that was a fantastic. One of the first things that came up in my started journaling, I remember that I always wanted to be a singer and there was a, this, a thing with my mother, she was, it came up with the American Song Book and I knew all the songs of the Frank Sinatra era and all that. So I always just loved music and running a thing with my mother was always just say, oh mom, I wish I could sing. And she said, oh honey, I wish you could too. So, but it was just so interesting to make talk about synchronicity that in addition to the, the left handedness. But I mean, the thing that I really wanted to learn how to sing, and again, the universe is, you know, obviously we're working for me because about a month later I saw a thing in my local newspaper and a brag that there's a school in the next town over the caters to children, a music school that caters to children of all ages.

Mari:                And I started taking lessons so it says, and then I got into a couple after couple of years of that, oh, I'm ready to record. And I got connected with a gentleman and we've been a musical partners now for about 10 years. Um, I'm working on my fourth album, so I sent an eye in addition, have been taking lessons all the time. And again, I had been with a really good teacher who got me into my body and it got me into the basics, but I thought it's time to move on to something else. And again, another topic for the journaling and then come. I was on facebook one day and I found this gentleman who runs a, one of the biggest music vocal coaching schools in New York. And, um, he's all about the body and retraining the muscles and unstressing the muscles and things. It's not about, you know, do you know whether it's a d minor, f flat, the theory, it's all about, again, getting into your body and knowing your body and knowing that I, no, now I have a chest voice like, and I can sing the high notes with my chest voice. I don't have to go into my. I mean, it's just, it's fascinating. So were, are continuing. So, uh, so I would say definitely my, my singing and my music is definitely the number one on my, my list of, of happiness at this point.

Sarah:               That's fantastic. And in love that it, um, you know, came to you and, and started because of journaling. Um, I mean that is just, that's amazing that you found a kind of your secret ingredient to what really replenishes your energy and fills your soul and gives you that, um, that inner happiness that allows you to still give to everyone else. Right? Yeah. That's just absolutely beautiful. I love that story. I love that story. So what else are you working on right now and uh, and what is the best way for people to get ahold of the deal?

Mari:                Well, you can find me at create Wright, W R I t and I'm working on a, well, I'm revising one of my old courses and called a kick writer's block in seven days. Uh, so, uh, some working on revising that and there's just started on my second book is called heal yourself, how journaling power gets and keeps you healthy and there's going to be geared towards talking about self management and you know, getting into understanding the discovery part, the inner critics and all that type of thing, but basically showing how through journaling you have the ability to manage yourself, create for yourself, decide what you want, uh, and you know, manage your, your life into the life that you want to live.

Sarah:               Wow, that's fantastic. I, I can't wait for that one. So now I had just signed up for you. You have a free five day, correct? Yes. You want to talk about that for a minute?

Mari:                Yes. It's on my homepage. It's a free journaling power toolkit, a, you get a coupon for 20 percent off of any one of my thing a month up now to about 20 courses, uh, in my store and get my monthly newsletter for free and there's a five day email course that will introduce people to what journaling really is about. I think so many people are so focused on, oh, do I do it in the morning? How do I do what I'm not? All those types of is. It has nothing to the best thing that. The thing about it, it's just, it really gets people to experience what journaling is all about. And you know, what it can do for you.

Sarah:               Yeah. And that there's no right or wrong way. The only wrong way is too nice.

Mari:                Right? So I think and people, that's what the feedback I've gotten from people who've taken the. Oh, so that's what journaling is all about. And you said, oh, I can see how this is, you know, because one of the, I have a plan. Yes. I, I was in the, I've been taking meditation. My meditation teacher kept saying, Oh, you need start and into journaling and all that kind of stuff, and he said that he wanted to get more to spirituality. He, he's a Christian. He wants to go work on his faith and things like that. And you said, oh my goodness. Oh, it just got me so deep in myself so quickly. This is fantastic. So I said, and I think it'll be a fantastic aha experience for people. And like I said, some, some people say, oh, one of my, in fact, it's interesting, he's a friend, he's another journal coach. And he said, oh my goodness. Mary said, this is not a walk in the park. I said, no, this is, this is what journaling pow as Hudson. That's why I call my, my, uh, service journaling power. I said that it's all about you mind, body, and soul.

Sarah:               Yeah, no, I, I love that. And I usually always trying to add some, a gratitude list to my journaling and I've just found it's been just such a huge life shift for me to, uh, to make sure that you've got just that focus on, on what happened during your day and, uh, and you almost keep stock of, of those throughout the day. So you tend to focus more on positivity. Um, I actually heard a Tony Robbins in, in one of his, um, uh, speeches today, said something so I'm just going to read it off. And it says, when you change your expectations from expectations to appreciation, your whole life will change. And I, and I loved that because it's, it's taking off that pressure of having expectations and you just focus on appreciating whether it's appreciating yourself, where you're at, you know where you want to be instead of just focusing all the time on what you should be doing or how you should be. And I just, I love that because it, it really is true when you just make that shift and really just appreciate where you're at, what has gotten you here, where you're going to go. And uh, and stop putting that pressure to be perfect on yourself. It really will change your whole life. So yeah, I just thought that I would share that. Right. So, uh, thank you.

Sarah:               Yeah, no, thank you so much. This is such an important topic to me just because I've, I've seen the benefits of journaling and myself and in so many people that I know and uh, and I really just wanted to give people a place to go like your website or your book or your, you know, your free five day, uh, or your paid courses and just show them that, um, that this, a new part of their life doesn't need to be scary. They can devote as much time and energy as they decide to. Uh, but the big thing is, is that they start doing it because the only way to get to that really true, you know, soul kind of happiness is a, is by accepting yourself first and foremost, and by being true to who you are and living a really authentic life where you're making choices and decisions that are based on your values. And, uh, and so I encourage everybody to go to your site, check out your work and, uh, and to start journaling and create the life that they want every day. I love that too. Thank you so much, Mary, for joining us today and, uh, and I look forward to, um, to working on your, uh, your five day and to checking out your book. Okay, great. Thanks so much, Sarah. Great meeting you. Yeah, you too. Have a great rest of your day. Thank you. Bye. Mary.



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