Journaling has always been something I avoided, it always represented a blank page waiting for me to spill all my dirty little secrets onto it, filling in all the lines with all of the embarrasing things I’d done.
In truth my self-care journal does have a lot of the embarrasing, shameful and down right terrible things I’ve done but while writing about them I always seem to find a beautiful lesson hidden under all those gross feelings, a lesson I had missed along the way.
I started journaling after reading the Artist’s way by Julia Cameron, a 12 week journey to higher creativity. She suggested writing 3 pages a day of pure nonsense…anything that came up in your mind. She called them the morning pages.
I didn’t expect much but I gave it a shot.
The first morning it took me an hour to write 3 pages. The second day it took me 45 minutes and the third day it only took me half an hour. I felt lighter, happier, more focused. It was amazing what a half an hour of writing about pure nothing could do. I started by writing mundane things like what I had to do that day, what groceries I was going to buy, what book I was reading.
Then it moved into deeper waters. Soon enough I was writing about what I wanted to do with my life, where I could infuse creativity, the people who had hurt me & the people I myself had hurt. I wrote about family, friends, relationships, work, therapy, addiction, fashion, judgement, jealousy….
My fear of the pages slowly vanished and I was left with a version of myself that I had never met before. Perhaps I had known her once in childhood but to find her again in adulthood was an unexpected blessing.
Each morning I sit with myself when it is quiet and still, drinking my cofee with almond milk and I journal. I always talk about what happened at work or what hillarious thing Cody (my partner) said and then I’ll write about how I’m feeling…the truth of the matter. Some days I’m great, some days I’m a mess. I’ve come to realize that’s life.
(To prove my point here’s an unflattering, unfiltered, unedited picture of myself in the morning…just for you & yes the bottoms match)
Writing about where I’m at honestly and then documenting what I’ve done to take care of myself in the last 24 hours has become a ritual.
It’s a sounding board just for you. It allows you to explore what you like or disklike. It is a safe space for some tough self-love.
Have you ever seen those detox foot baths where the water turns a dark muddy brown by drawing out all of your toxins? Journaling is like that…but for your soul.
Take the plunge and start journaling about your day, the fight you had with your spouse, the pasta you had for dinner, the moment you found for yourself and how you are honestly feeling in the moment.
There are a few different ways to journal about self-care, the morning pages are a great place to start or you can try bullet journaling (see above). It’s super simple, you just write down your triumphs, fears, memorable moments in bullet points, even incorporating some art if you want to. Get creative with it!
If you haven’t yet subscribed to the blog now is a great time because you’ll have your own guided self-care journal sent right into your inbox…no excuses!