So, mamas… I’m going to start posting our Journal Challenge Info, Prompts, and Posts here. Hopefully it will be more clear this way.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback! Enjoy…
Before We Start…
Some of My Own Goals for Doing This Challenge
I want to create an experience of journaling for you that is
*and feels good!
I want to help you create a new habit of journaling, if that is one of your goals.
I want to share different ways of journaling and open your mind to new possibilities around what journaling can be. xo
Journaling is powerful.
It can help you…
*clear your mind
*feel your feelings
*become more aware of your thoughts and feelings
*organize your thoughts
*process difficult experiences and emotions
*record important ideas and happenings so you can remember them
*reflect on life and create meaning
*get clear about what you want and don’t want
Questions to Consider
1. Do you have a regular journaling habit right now?
2. Are there any obstacles or factors that make it a challenge to journal these days? What are they?
3. Have you journaled in the past? If so, how did it make you feel?
4. What would you like to get out of this week of journaling?
Share your answers in the Community!
For fun, there will be prizes!
If you do every daily prompt and have them all finished by Tuesday, May 3, you are eligible to be entered. Make sure you comment on each day’s post to say that you did it.
I will draw the winners at random at the end of the challenge next Wednesday.
Note: It’s okay if you are a little behind. Just comment on each post when you’ve completed it. smile emoticon
Any questions? Please ask!
Day 1: Guided Journaling
This is the name I came up with for short answer/ Q and A-type journaling. Rather than being faced with a blank page, you respond to questions or prompts.
I was inspired by Rebecca Kane’s Companion journal to create my own version of this for our challenge. You can find the worksheet to download and print out in the files section of the Community on Facebook.
I really like having the small, contained space. Knowing I can only write a small bit takes the pressure off. And if I really want to, I can go outside the lines or journal more elsewhere if I’m so inspired.
After you do your journaling, remember to comment in the group. :)
Tip 1: Celebrate!
Celebrating every little bit of success helps us create habits. It’s important to celebrate along the way as we are creating a new habit. We can also have another celebration when we meet a larger goal.
Celebrate Along the Way
We can celebrate along the way by…
Calling forth happy thoughts, celebratory thoughts, right after we do our desired habit (no matter how short or small… so for example, one sentence or a few words of journaling do count!!)
To do this, you might say in your mind, “YES! I did it!” or do a happy dance or wriggle, or do jazz fingers in the air for yourself as you cheer yourself on in your mind… Silly is good! You actually want to call for these happy feelings when you do a little version of your new habit. :)
Celebrate Milestones and Meeting Goals
Decide on a way to celebrate when you reach a goal, such as finishing this Journal Challenge. So you might decide to buy yourself a new pen or journal, or have a relaxing bath, or treat yourself to a little dark chocolate, or something else that feels good to you. It doesn’t have to cost anything. It’s the symbolic meaning that counts.
So, let’s share…
1. How will you celebrate each time you do your little habit? (your little journaling)
2. How will you celebrate at the end of the week?
Day 2: Pain Journaling
Pain journaling is a way to release negative repressed emotions. I first read about this in the context of relieving chronic pain that hasn’t responded to other treatment, but whether or not you have chronic pain, this is a powerful way to clear your mind and heart of “stuff” that’s dragging you down mentally. When we try to hold our emotions inside, or push them down, they fester rather than going away. When we allow them, let them be, they dissipate on their own much more quickly.
Here’s how to do pain journaling:
Write down anything and everything you can think of that makes you feel angry, irritated, frustrated, sad, guilty, ashamed, hurt, embarrassed, worried, afraid… anything at all negative. Don’t think too hard about this… JUST DO IT. You’ll be glad you did. :)
These can be small things. Or big things. Anything from the past, anytime in the past, even 30 years ago. It could be from today. From five minutes ago. Last night. This very moment.
Anything that comes up when you sit quietly and search your mind for things that make you angry, annoyed, irritated, ashamed, or afraid–that is what you write down. Just write it all down.
You may also choose to write about just one or two specific things that come up when you think about what you have felt anger, irritation, or frustration recently.
Do not edit yourself.
Worried that someone will read it? Just put the first letter of words.
Also, write in your messiest handwriting if that feels right. These kinds of thoughts and feelings tend to bring out the messy in me.
You know what you’re writing, and that’s all that matters. I don’t even go back and read it. It doesn’t matter. The work is in the process of letting it out, letting it through, no longer holding it in.
Read more about pain journaling here: https://www.happinessmama.com/a-surprising-way-to-deal-with-pain-anger-and-stress/
Remember to share that you’ve done it on the relevant post in our group.
Tip 2: Start Small
When creating new habits, one of the best things to do is to start small. I’m talking, tiny.
You can either make your time small, such as, I will journal for 2 minutes…
Or you can make the amount small, such as, I will write one sentence.
For this week of journaling, I want you to know that success equals doing the journaling a little bit. You can define that however you want.
For our 7 Days, 7 Ways Challenge, you may like to make it 7 minutes. For you, that might mean 7 minutes of writing, or it could mean 7 minutes including reading the prompt.
You may also do your 2 minutes or one sentence or 7 minutes, and then decide you’re having such a good time you want to keep going. That’s great, too.
I want you to feel successful when you do it a little bit.
So go ahead and think small. And then see if you can think even smaller. And let that be your goal for each day.
Seriously. Keep your goal small. :)
Day 3: Gratitude Journaling
There is a reason this type of journaling is so popular! It makes you feel great to be thankful.
The main thing is to be mindful while you do it. Really call forth those feelings of gratitude. It’s the feeling that makes the difference.
You can do this however you feel like. You might make a list, write one thing or many, write sentences or phrases, draw pictures, whatever.
Tip 3: You have permission.
You have permission to do this your way.
Write a lot or write a little.
Write with a pen or with a pencil.
Write with markers or crayons or colored pencils.
You have permission to type on the computer.
You have permission to draw or paint.
You have permission to just record yourself on your phone.
Or write on a post it note.
Or on scratch paper.
You have permission to do this for one minute.
Or ten minutes. Or an hour.
You have permission to be messy.
You have permission to make it beautiful.
You have permission to dot your “i”’s with little hearts
Or decorate the margins with doodles.
You have permission to care about spelling, or not.
You have permission to write in cursive, or in print, or in big bubble letters…
Or a mix of all three.
Or none of the above.
You have permission to keep it.
Or you can throw it away.
You can fold it up neatly and tie a ribbon around it and put it in your drawer.
You can burn it.
You can keep it and never look at it again.
You can read it again and again.
It’s up to you.
You have permission.
You have permission to angry.
You have permission to be sad.
You have permission to feel happy, grateful, excited!
You have permission to feel guilty or ashamed.
You have permission to feel love.
You have permission to speak your truth.
You have permission to not be nice.
You have permission to say whatever is on your mind.
You have permission to keep this all to yourself and never share it with anyone else.
You have permission to share it with someone else.
You have permission.
(Inspired in part by the beautiful post by Leonie Dawson, You Have Permission.)
And you can listen to me talking to you about day 3 here.
Day 4: About Your Day
For today’s journaling, we are writing about our day. See if you can find a moment you want to remember or just think about, and write about that.
It doesn’t have to be unusual or extraordinary. Even the simple moments can be fascinating to read about later, and it’s also worthwhile just to reflect on what has happened in the day.
Day 5: Mind Mapping
Mindmapping is a fun way to organize your ideas and think in a different way. Putting your ideas on paper in the form of a mind map can help you unlock even more ideas and make connections more easily.
I thought it would be fun to do mind map journaling. Let me know what you think!
Today I will give you a couple of topics to choose from for your journaling. You’re welcome to do one, both, or just choose your own topic. But I’d love for you to give mind mapping a try, whatever you choose to write about.
TOPICS: (Choose one.)
1. How do you want to feel in May? What would that look like? What are some things that make you feel that way?
2. What values are most important to you? How do they show up in your life? How can you live into them more?
HOW TO DO MIND MAPPING:
I like to start with my main topic in the middle, and then start putting related big ideas as offshoots around it… and then I put smaller details/related ideas coming off of those.
Day 6: Art Journaling!
Some fun today! Grab your favorite art supplies or whatever’s handy, and draw/paint/color for today’s journaling. Whatever feels fun and easy.
You can just do this intuitively based on your feelings and thoughts.
If you want me to give you a topic, I’ll put a few options below to choose from:
1-If there is something you want to create, draw what you want that creation to look like (symbolically or literally).
2-How do you want to feel? Express that.
3-Draw something about you, who you are.
By the way, as with all journaling, this is about expressing yourself, not about performing or being an amazing artist. Relax and enjoy the process.