I am working on a Journaling workshop so I have had to review the what, when, how and where of Journaling.
I have been writing for ever, yes I had a diary when I was young. Who knows where those notebooks are, maybe they were tossed like trash in some of our moves.
I have an open notebook all the time, and maybe not one but several, one for my to do lists, one for my reflections, one for when I travel and one for my dreams.
If I happen to be without my notebook I feel I am missing an arm.
I love words, and I am fascinated by people who still use pen and paper.
I guess it could be considered old fashion, obsolete to use pen and paper when you have all the technology available to you, but there is something about the pen and the paper and the words you can write that fascinates me.
A hand written note has the energy of the person who wrote it, you can almost feel the person. There is a whole science developed around your handwriting and what is says about your personality.
Once I was going over some old papers, letters and pictures and I found a letter my dad had written to me using a typewriter .
I treasure those letters, they give me all the picture of what was going on at the time and it shows his affection.
I was reading this letter and I thought how I wished he had hand written it.
As I continued to check those papers, I found another letter, and this one was hand written. The first thing he wrote was an apology, “I am sorry but the typewriter is not working, and I have to write this letter”.
Talk about a coincidence or rather God answering my prayer right there.
There is no rule as to how journaling is done.
It could be in the form of a recollection of events, lists, notations, drawings, it could be daily or just when you feel you want to record something.
In my case typically I write about something that I do not want to forget, something unique, something that I have learned, an AHA moment or one of the daily miracles that I encounter.
I also write poetry, and recently I am incorporating pictures o clippings.
Journaling as a tool to connect
I use journaling to talk to GOD, the Supreme Being, I write if I am struggling with a situation or want to connect with the source of hope and love.
Sometimes I take my journal and open indistinctly and find that what I was writing about before is still relevant or gives me a message for the current situation.
Journaling is my prayer sometimes I ask for something, other times I give thanks for what I have received.
I never intend for my journal to be read by someone, but on the other hand I would have loved to be able to read about the happenings in my Grand mother’s life, if she had kept a Journal
So, maybe at the back of my mind I want someone to read it and find messages of hope and renewal.
Journaling is a sacred moment, sometimes it seems as if the words had written themselves, eager to come out and bring some sense, put things into perspective. Journaling forces me to see the situation in a way that can be explained.
Journaling also allows me to develop my self awareness to make sure I know what my values are, what my skills and abilities are and what I can offer to the world.
Journaling is meditation, it is just me and my inner self, expressing a feeling, it requires me to go inward, have all my attention in what I want to write. There might be chatter, there might be the active monkey mind, but little by little they all settled down and allow some single thought to be expressed.
Journaling allows me to be in the now. There is no judgment from the outside, no one is going to respond to the idea I am writing, it is me and my thoughts. So there is a lot of freedom in writing and I can learn a lot about myself by reviewing what I have written.
Thoughts come and go and what is current today will change tomorrow, Journaling allows me to see the impermanence in life, and in thoughts.
All is changing all the time. The thoughts change, I change, and that helps me deal with the future, knowing that everything passes.
Journaling is a shifter.
Yes, sometimes when I feel desperate and can’t seem to find an answer to my difficulties, I sit down with my journal and start writing, There is no preparation or plan, I allow the words to flow and little by little I find peace. It could be the simple act of focusing on what I am doing, or the realization that no matter how bad things are there is something to be grateful for, or the concept that in any difficulty there is a lesson to be learned.
So my thought pattern is shifted, just by writing my thoughts.
Journaling for planning.
I use journaling every year to review and record what happened in the prior year, what was important, how things evolved.
I also use it to plan for my upcoming year, I typically like to have a big trip to look forward to, it gives me the energy to work hard, to know that I will have a reward. Lately my trips are less touristy and more of a spiritual experience. By writing what I want to accomplish I commit to myself and it is easier to work towards that goal.
I also use Journaling as a Gratitude list. It has been proven that when you appreciate what you have, your brain functions better and your heart rate is improved.
So, these are some of the ways I use journaling for. Please if you read this and want to make a comment, let me know if you journal and what benefits you find from doing that.