Deep soul writing doesn't replace anything; it enriches everything ~Janet Conner
In a recent blog post I listed the top 15 benefits of having a regular journaling practice to go to, but I didn't expand on them.
This process of writing my thoughts, ideas and feelings down on paper is one I greatly cherish. It's a way to stay centered while, at the same time, allowing for a different perspective on life through silent introspection. Between the pages of my journal I write my words as I become an observer of my inner soul.
In this blog post I share with you some of the takeaways I've received over the years from this simple practice of putting pen to paper, on a regular. Take away what resonates. Leave the rest.
1. Trust the voice within
Over time, the words I share between the pages of my journal helps me to trust my gut. I’m better able to access my own intuition. Learning to trust your voice as you write, letting the intuitive you rise to the surface so that your inner knowing shares her glorious wisdom with you is THE KEY to this whole shebang called journaling. Yes. This.
2. Slow down
There’s something about the act of putting pen to paper that just slows you down enough to ingest the words flowing on the paper. There’s actually been scientific studies that greatly extol this virtues of using and actual writing instrument on the paper that translates sometimes to your brain
3. Truth is Power
Words are powerful. And used incorrectly they can do damage. But the words you write in your journal speak to and come from the larger essence of your heart. It represents the truth of who you are.
4. Find the way to patience
I have kids. I probably don't need to say anything more but I will. Bringing the frustrations I might be experiencing with my kids (not to mention the hubby) into the pages of my journal helps give me perspective and, in turn, teaches me to be more patient in the long run. I’m able to see that a thing wasn’t as big as it was in the moment. And that sometimes an apology is needed.
5. Listen More
Remember that saying "listen, more, talk less"? In November of 2016 I made a vow to listen more because I didn't want to contribute anymore to the constant noise of just hearing my own voice and those who thought like me.
Plus, I'm real good at listening to my body and writing about what comes up. But what I found was missing was the ability to hear what others are saying without forming my own response while they were talking. Yeh...that.
6. Self-care is a must
The way I feel after a journaling session, laying it all out there on the blank pages that fill ups with my heartwords, reminds me all the time that this too is self care.
7. Being creative is a necessity
Although I try to ecercise my creativity muscle more often, sometime the only creativity in my day is the time I spend in my journal. Besides, I've got a new thing I've been doing....”plopping" watercolour on the page before I write over that brilliant bit of colour. F. U. N. Just saying.
8. Realize I don't know it all
I try to answer the questions that come up for me as I'm writing. Sometimes though, I don't have an answer and I've come to realize that even this is okay.
Letting out the words that flow out of me at the time I'm writing is enough to let me know that the process of figuring whatever it is out has started, the simmering and percolating will eventually lead to the answer I need.
9. I can only change me
Sometimes I am frustrated beyond belief and, more times than not, I express this heightened feeling in my journal. The words are scribbly and almost illegible.
But, each time I read back these words, I remember yet again that the only person I can change is myself. Cause it's how I react to a situation that can change it. I finally know that me trying to change another is near impossible + reciting the Serenity Prayer in these instances helps).
10. Keep it simple
Simple is soooo much better than complicated. Got nothing more on that.
11. Deal with my Inner Criitc
This chica knows her stuff! She knows exactly how to get me to stay hidden in the shadows. Her tools are endless and her voice sharp (yeh, I have one of those). But I know her story now and how she operates.
I've written the words to let her be seen...and it seems that all she needed. Recognition that the thing is a thing and knowing that I know is a beginning, enough to settle her down.
12. Don’t let overwhelm overwhelm me
What I know for me is that when overwhelm sets in, perspective goes out the window and chaos or complete shut down ensues. Perspective can lead to clarity. Getting the words down in the pages of my journal helps clear the air, lessen the tendency for overwhelm, firmly shuts the door on chaos and puts me on the path to being more present, more aware.
13. Set boundaries
I've come to realize this after reading the words I'd written in my journal an not adhering to boundaries I set for myself. I now know that boundaries are an important part of what I need, what must happen if I'm to function at my best, so that I can give without feeling the structure of must.
14. Apologize (because love matters more)
This one is hard fought. I grew up where apologies were not the norm. I've had to change the story I told myself that, as a parent, I didn't need to apologize to my kids. Eff that. Just because they are little-er, younger human beings doesn't mean they don't deserve one. And LOVE should, does matter more...every time.
15. Forgive (myself mostly)
Forgiveness turned inward is called self-compassion. It's being able to let go and accept what is, just like it is. Nothing more. Nothing less. Self compassion is about allowing grace to find its way in. Is it time to start forgiving yourself? Let it go hon. Let. It. Go.
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I’ll be starting a new round of Journal Circle in September, This space is where we meet to explore untapped avenues, letting our intuition guide us, all the while having fun exploring our inner worlds and adventuring together.
Journal Circle is about getting time and space for you to write or restart a habit around journaling and writing your heartwords. Sometime the happenings in your day don’t allow for you to take the time to sit and go inward like you’ve been yearning to. I started Journal Circle expressly for this....to allow time for you.
We meet in my private “Zoom Room” for an hour each time and Circle together on the last Friday of each month for 5 sessions. Bring your journal, a favorite pen, your beverage of choice (mine will probably be my fave tea, Mango Ceylon) ... and your open heart.
Registration* is FREE and now open. Come join us. The first Journal Circle is Friday, July 27, 2018, 11am PDT.
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Toodles and see you soon,
*psst.....registration is required to participate.