Prompt insights, inspiration, tips and extra mindfulness content for your Journal Journey!
General Thoughts for Getting Started: Your journal has been structured in a way to guide you toward more intentional living, help you create your ideal life and, at the same time, give you the flexibility to use it for scheduling, listing daily priorities, journaling etc.
For this reason, some sections of the journal have purposefully been titled in an open-ended way to encourage you to use the space however works best for you.
After you have filled in the pages prior to the daily pages in your journal (more help for these beginning pages can be found in the sections below), the best way to get the most benefit from your journal is to quickly refresh your mind with these beginning pages daily.
* Start each day by looking at your Action Steps for your Dreams. What can you do today and/or this week to move toward completion of the first step you need to take?
*Then spend a few minutes looking at your vision board and feeling what it would feel like once your dreams are a reality. This daily focus is important, as it shifts your brain into a mode where it is open and looking for opportunities to create this reality.
* Quickly scan down the Positive column of your Mindset Shift page, reinforcing all the ways you are choosing to think positively.
* Depending on when you are using your journal, you may want to update your wellness tracker next.
* Finally glance at your monthly calendar to refresh on upcoming events. All of this should take less than 5 minutes of your time.
The Most Important Thing You Can Do For Success: Your journal can be a powerful tool in helping you shape the life you desire, but just like any tool, it is only good if you use it. One of the most important things you can do before beginning to use your journal is to make a commitment to yourself to do whatever it takes to establish a journaling routine that works for you. Understand that you may not figure out what works best when you first begin. It may take a little adjustment, but keep adjusting until you have established a regular habit. And don't get discouraged if you miss a day or two, habits can take a minimum of at least 30 days before they become established. For useful suggestions on how to establish a journaling routine, you can read Tips to Establish Good Journaling Habits.
Living in Harmony with the Seasons: Seasonality is a common theme throughout your journal. By simply giving attention to the changes in the seasons, we naturally begin to align our day-to-day activities more in harmony with the shifts in our environment.Traditional Chinese Medicine and ancient Ayurvedic philosophy encourage adapting and flowing with the changing rhythm of each season and suggest that by doing so, we can strengthen our health and increase our vitality. Each season is a time to begin anew.
Dreams vs Goals Rather than thinking about your goals for the future, I invite you to dream about what you most want in your life. Listen to the whispers of your heart and the pull of influence from your soul. Setting goals puts the mind into action, yet feelings are where the real magic happens at a subconscious level. Goals can get tangled up with the expectations of parents, teachers, bosses and friends. Dreams speak the language of possibilities where fear of failure isn’t part of the discussion. There is real power in imagining what you would look and feel like in your vision of your ideal life.
Realize that for most of us, dreams change over the course of your lifetime. Your dreams when you are newly graduated will look drastically different from those when you are retired.
Am I too Old to Dream? You are never too old to have dreams. They may seem simpler later in life, but that's okay. Dreams help establish a sense of purpose in our lives and with that comes a greater enjoyment of life in the process.
Real life examples of dreams of a few journal users in their eighties include:
* having beautiful flower gardens * having good health * having their new found passion for writing published in some way
Creating Your Action Steps: After you have thoroughly described your dream in your journal, imagine that your dream has already come true. What would have had to happen in the weeks and months just prior to this dream being realized? What would have had to happen in the year prior? Two years prior? Five years prior?
By working backwards from your dream to today, you will better be able to list action steps that you will need to take first to begin this journey. List these first action steps that you can accomplish this season in your journal.
Recognize that at the beginning of the journey some level of learning and/or practice may be necessary and these too are steps forward. However, if you have already been educating yourself, know that at some point, you are going to have to be brave and take the first steps beyond this as well.
Your Vision Board Your vision board should be a visual representation of your dreams, so make sure you have filled out your dream pages before you begin your vision board.
Monthly Intentions: Each monthly calendar spread has a place to list your intention for the month. Think of your intention as a guiding principle for how you want to experience life, such as: “I am open to embracing change in my life.” or “I easily make authentic connections with others.” or “Life is fun and I live each day fully.”
Try stating your intention in some way daily. Perhaps you write it on a little card that sits at your desk or by your bedside so that you see it first thing when you awake. Or begin meditation, a walk or yoga practice with this in mind.
Soft Focus Belief: The monthly calendar also has a suggested soft focus belief. In yoga, we use a drishti as a method of softly focusing our gaze and our attention. The soft focus prompt can be used in a similar way to cultivate new, useful beliefs about life. Challenge yourself to see how many ways you can begin to view your life from the suggested perspective.
Weekly Intentions: As you start each week write down at least one thing you can do to progress toward your dreams.
Make self care a priority by creating an intention for it at the beginning of your week as well. Self-care can take many forms. This could be as simple as taking a walk, choosing to drink plenty of water, letting someone else do something they are capable of, saying no despite the negative feedback, or picking a bouquet of flowers from your garden. Self care shouldn’t be viewed as an indulgence, but rather as understanding and respecting your priorities and, in the process, intuitively caring for mind, body and soul.
And begin making a regular habit of seeing where you can simplify your life by saying NO. Perhaps this is a little less screen time or perhaps you realize where you can give someone else responsibility. Or maybe some things just don't need to be taken care of this week. Perhaps they can be delayed. At the same time, use your saying YES prompt as an invitation to incorporate more of what you enjoy in your life. Seize the day! Don't let life pass you by. Have fun now.
Your wellness trackers can be used to track any number of things you are working to improve on your journey to your ideal life. Perhaps you want to track your mood daily and then compare this to the events in your life during that time. You could color code the leaves to indicate days when you were in a good mood vs those you were anxious and stressed. Or perhaps you would like to increase the quality of your sleep. You could use a tracker to color code how well you slept each evening. Perhaps a violet leaf represents a good, sound night's sleep, a blue leaf represents an "okay" nights sleep and a green leaf represents a restless sleep. For more tips and inspiration on how to make the most of your wellness trackers, check out Habit Tracker Hacks.
You can also use the wellness trackers to help you create new habits or break old ones. When doing this, I recommend you only work on one or two at most at a time. This will greatly increase your likelihood of success based on the research.
Creating and breaking habits isn’t all about self-control and willpower. Rather it is about having a good plan and working on that plan daily.
Scientific research also indicates the key to long-term success in creating/breaking habits is to reduce potential temptations and distractions. In other words, take actions that make it easy to create a habit (conversely, take actions that make it difficult to do what you want to avoid). What pleasant cues can you set up to remind you to follow through? How can you remove temptations to make bad habits more difficult to access?
This page is to help you practice training your brain to think more positively on a regular basis. If there is something you notice that you think negatively about often, here is the place you can shift that to a positive perspective and then remind yourself of this daily.
Don't feel like this page needs to be completed fully right away. It may take some time to notice the areas of your life that you have a tendency to think more negatively about.
This is also a great place to consider what areas of your life aren't working well right now and try to find any limiting beliefs that may be the cause of this. Restructure your limiting belief into one that is more positive for you and practice instilling this belief in your consciousness by looking at it daily. If you need help identifying where you are holding limiting beliefs, the blog post Shattering Limiting Beliefs would be a great one to read.
An affirmation is a positive statement used to create a reality you wish to experience. They are phrases used to challenge negative or unhelpful thoughts and are like a roadmap for the brain to think positively. If affirmations are new to you or you’d like a suggestion on how to move past any objections that arise in your mind, download The Secret to Creating Affirmations That Work Course.
Gratitude: A daily gratitude practice can change your life. It truly is amazing. Know that some days it may be hard to find things you are grateful for. When this happens, reach for the simple things like the sunlight coming in your window, how much you enjoy your morning cup of coffee or the sound of the birds. Whatever comes to mind, try to take a moment to truly appreciate it.
This is also a great place to practice recognizing everything that is abundant in your life. The concept of recognizing the abundance in your life is similar to acknowledging what you are grateful for. It is the practice of acknowledging all the ways you have more than you need. Practiced consistently over time, this will lead to positive attributes such as a pleasant, confident attitude, generosity, an openness for new opportunities and the ability to see challenges from multiple perspectives. You may feel more secure, more empowered and in general will lead a happier, more fulfilling life when living it from an abundant viewpoint.
Celebrating Me, Beauty I Noticed and What Gave Me Joy Prompt: If you are unlikely to use your journal at the end of the day, ask yourself these questions while you drift off to sleep and fill them in the next morning. By doing so, you’ll more easily fall asleep to sweet dreams. Also, please know that it is not a "bad" thing if you find at the end of the day you struggle to remember moments to jot down for these prompts. These prompts are designed to remind your brain daily to watch for these occurrences in your day, so that when they do happen you'll begin to notice them more frequently and then begin to catch yourself in the moment so that you can slow down and soak it in.
Other Helpful Information
Page 103 of the Spring 2022 JMB Living Journal
Sometimes we allow our lives to become too full without even realizing it. When this happens, we can become so overwhelmed that it feels like everything is important and saying no isn’t an option.
It’s times like these that it is crucial to take a step back and reevaluate everything that you spend time doing. Try looking at each area of your life separately as if you were putting it under a microscope looking for clues for how you can restructure and do things differently. Start with the big picture such as “work” and then break that down into further components to analyze.
Plot this out on paper with plenty of space to let ideas flow. Look closely at what takes your time, how much value it provides, if it even needs to be done and if someone else could do it.
Here is the blank version for you to download and work on your own. Click the image to download the worksheet from Pinterest or save it to your own Pinterest board to revisit at key points in your life as your responsibilities shift!
Want additional tips and lifestyle tools to support your Journal Journey?
Procrastinating can haunt many aspects of our lives: work tasks, home projects, getting exercise or even just doing laundry. These ten tips will help set you up with ways to support you in growing as you work to improve your follow-through on things you want to accomplish.
There is no exact or “correct” way to live intentionally. The possibilities of what it looks like and how it changes your life are endless and completely up to you.
But, how can you create these benefits in your own life, no matter what your lifestyle is like? It all depends on how you want to implement it!
How My Life Changed When I Switched from Self-Care to Self-Love and 50 Love Affirmations: Valentine’s Day is almost here, but how do we expand self-love beyond material things? When we fully love ourselves, life looks totally different. Working on loving and accepting yourself doesn't mean stopping self-care altogether
There are ways to create sustainable journaling habits with no pressure or high expectations. Now is the time to begin to create a routine that works for you where journaling becomes a habit, so you can set yourself up for success in the new year.
Use left/right arrows to navigate the slideshow or swipe left/right if using a mobile device
Choosing a selection results in a full page refresh.
Press the space key then arrow keys to make a selection.