I believe that stress is often derived from being too afraid to say what we truly think and feel. We allow our negative self-talk to get the best of us and we sell ourselves short with thoughts like, No one cares what you think!
This week I am challenging you to activate and use your voice like it’s a muscle. There is a tremendous growth that develops from being expressive, even to ourselves. And you don’t even have to use your voice out loud!
Journaling has been one of the most amazing practices of self-expression and release for me. When I began journaling, I let out so much of what seemed to be bottled up for years. In my writing, which I share with no one else, I can be authentic and raw and free from limitations. And so can you.
Journaling has many benefits, like:
- removing mental blocks, allowing you to better understand yourself, others, and the world around you
- enabling you to reflect upon your life’s journey by looking back at past journal entries
- giving you time to reflect about your feelings and emotions so that you can better understand them
- providing an outlet for expressing difficult emotions, such as anger and frustration, without hurting someone you love
- helping you release your negative thoughts and emotions so that you can move on to a happier state of mind
- allowing you to track patterns, improvement, and growth over time
- helping you tell your story
Earlier I shared the power of using affirmations and personal mantras to develop a stronger and more positive self-image and mindset. By combining empowering self-talk and the practice of journaling, you will become very aware of your inner voice.
After you’ve been journaling for a while, you’ll notice that when you find yourself engaging with family members, co-workers, or your partner, you will be more inclined to offer your true feelings from a clear, centered, and assured space. This can help you nurture your relationships, deal with stressful situations, and even help others.
Buy yourself a blank notebook you’ll love to write in, and start by adding a short (it could be as short as a paragraph or two) entry towards the end of each day. Like we discussed in ‘creating sanctuary,’ it’s best to do this in the space you designed for introspection, meditation, or yoga. Maybe a light a candle or two and sit down to write.
Here’s a calendar of potential things to write about:
- Monday: Which emotions did you feel today, and what do you think motivated those feelings?
- Tuesday: Who/what inspired you today, or who/what made you feel less than? Why?
- Wednesday: Describe a moment from your past that makes you feel warm and safe.
- Thursday: What are some things you can do to take care of yourself that you never do enough of?
- Friday: What’s one aspect of your life—big or small—that you’d like to improve upon—and how will you go about it?
- Saturday: Create a bucket list for the next five years.
- Sunday: What are your goals for the coming week?