“The act of writing is the act of discovering what you believe” — David Hare
We take the courses, hire the coaches and have the dreams yet we still get in our own way, don’t we?
Running your own business is apparently the biggest personal development journey you can go on. We’ve all heard that, felt it and got the T-shirt.
Along the way, we get given all these weird and wonderful tools like tapping (EFT), journaling, meditation etc but there’s just so much to do and therefore these success tools get put on the “should” pile.
It’s not what you know it’s what you DO that changes the game.
I resisted journaling for ages because I didn’t know what to write about.
Twice this week someone asked me ‘but HOW do you journal Jo?’ so here’s my personal what, why and how to get you started.
First up – there is no right or wrong way to do it
Personally, journaling for me is about managing my mind and for gaining self-awareness around where I might be getting in my own way.
The reason I journal is to manage my mind. Self Management. Everything comes back to self-mastery and managing our selves.
It’s a place I can let go of my fears, describe my dreams and give myself a pep talk.
I find pen and paper better for this rather than the lappie, so I’ve always got a notepad on the go. Often a Moleskin, not always!
Secondly, this is a private practice.
It’s not going to be read by anyone else – it’s a place for you to be open, honest and write down your fears and your dreams. Use it to clear your head. Use it to rant. Use it to dream.
It’s your safe space to clear your mind and coach yourself through your latest “stuff”.
- It’s great for self-awareness and therefore self-improvement
- It reduces stress and anxiety
- It helps improve your mood and allows you to let things go
- It helps you organise your thoughts
- It increases confidence
- It provides clarity
- It helps with decision making
- You learn things about yourself
But how do you know what to write? Here are 20 journaling prompts to get you started:
I avoided journaling for so long because I didn’t know the right way to do it – turns out there isn’t one. It’s imperfect action at it’s best.
Here are some ideas and prompts to get you started:
- Download all your thoughts – I do this one often, it’s a braindump of my thoughts and it’s really interesting what comes out!
- Write about what you want to invite into your life
- Write about what you don’t want
- Let go lists – write all the things you want to let go of
- Gratitude journaling – write a list of things you are grateful for
- Ask yourself a question and then try to answer it
- Ask your business a question
- Ask your future self a question
- Ask yourself questions such as: What am I avoiding?
- Do a Pros and Cons List to help make a decision
- Morning journaling – write out what you want to get done that day
- Evening journaling – plan out tomorrow
- Start your page by writing “Things that I’m worried about” and let your pen flow
- Start the page with “My future self wants me to know that….” and give yourself a pep talk
- Write about your goals for the next 12 months / 3 years
- Desires List – Write down what you would use the money for when you reach your big income goals
- Future journaling – another one of my favs. Writing in the present tense but in the future, so let’s say it’s 27 March 2020, I might start my page with: “It’s 27 March 2021 and….” and then write about the day you have just had. Dreaming about your ideal life, writing about the goals you’ve already achieved. It’s great for shifting your energy.
- Lists: Fear of success / Fear of failure. One I get my clients to do when they start working with me so we can see what’s blocking them from taking action. Write 25 negative consequences of succeeding and 25 negative consequences of failing. It’s so interesting what comes up and makes you realise you might be getting stuck on something completely irrelevant. Future worrying is pointless and not worth your precious energy today.
- A braindump – our minds are powerful things but not when they are full so it’s good practice to braindump everything on your mind often
- Picture yourself at the end of the year its 31st December, champagne in hand. What would you love to be celebrating from the last 12 months?
Just go wherever your mind takes you and keep it a judgment-free zone. You don’t have to just write. You can draw too!
My dreams, my fears, my thoughts, my pep talks, my brainstorming and brain dumping – it all goes on in my journal. The point is – I never leave a journaling session feeling worse, I always feel better.
Perfect for self-awareness and perspective-shifting.
If it helps get you started – I never write on the first page of my journal because it stops me getting started wanting to write something profound!!
Hope this helps get pen to paper.
Love Jo x
PS Your current reality is the direct result of your previous thoughts. So hit the journal and start managing those thoughts!