This week I want to share a piece of my journaling practice with you. I’ve spoken about my journaling journey on the blog and instagram before, but now I really feel that I’ve found my practice. From writing thankfulness journals with my mom, keeping diaries as a girl, and trying guided journaling each morning and night. None of these practices have stuck, but each have been important steps to finding the practice that works for me.
I have finally opened myself up to the grace of understanding that consistency doesn’t have to mean every day. It means showing up at every opportunity to do the thing. When it comes to journaling, if I missed one day it was like missing a week, which turned into missing a month, then the whole year. By allowing grace a place in my practice of evening pages I can be consistent in intention and come back to it after a day or two when other things take priority. I’ve also found that incorporating my journaling into my evening routine of skin care, stretching and reading, has helped me see it as a sacred practice of self care and discovery.
My journaling practice helps me to examine who I am and who I want to work to become, with special attention to my creativity. I have a notebook with 365 words related to the creative life that I resonate with. These are chopped up into sections and I roll a D20 each night, twice - first to find the section, then to find the word I will be writing about and reflecting on that evening. This gives me variety within a structure I can come back to again and again, allowing me to see my evolution in the pages.
Below I’m sharing an excerpt from a journal entry this year and hope you enjoy a snapshot of my journaling journey:
Section 3, Word 18 - Serenity
It’s hard for me to be still enough for long enough to find serenity. Serenity is a divine stillness, it is a settling. I like being busy. I like having things to do - even when I relax I am fully engaged, but not serene. Reading is an emotional rollercoaster. Creativity is a place of doing, a chaos of becoming. I suppose stillness may be the wrong word, but rather a release of tension, the conscious act of letting go and settling into a palace of weightles peace…
Serenity is difficult for me because in order to find serenity I need to let go. There’s a vast difference between letting go and saying ‘fuck it.’ One is intentional, the other more dismissive - if, sometimes, necessary. How can I invite more serenity into my life? Maybe that is what my body tells me - when it is hurting and tight and limiting - it’s telling me I am those things - it is signalling me to let go of something, inviting me to grow, to lengthen and make space for serenity in my body. I may be able to push the ‘mind over matter’ thing a bit too far sometimes, but if the last few years have taught me anything it is that my body calls the shots in the end; she takes the best care of me. I hate meditating. Sigh more. Rotate your joints more. Stretch more…
Recognizing stress before it becomes tension is key for me - stopping it before it settles in my body. Break patterns of tension.