What I learned from 31 Days of Journaling

In August, I released a list of daily journaling prompts.  They ranged from “20 things I love about me” to “The most courageous thing I’ve ever done” to “What makes me sad” to “I work hard because…”

Although I’ve been keeping a journal since I was 10, I usually free-write. These journaling prompts, however,  provided an opportunity to get to know myself better.  I wouldn’t think too much about the prompts.  I preferred to look at the prompt for the day right before I started journaling.  I would then right it in fancy script at the top of the page and then wait for the words to flow.

And boy, did they flow.  It seemed like my hand was being guided because words and thoughts I didn’t know I had in me emerged on the page.

Here is an excerpt:

Prompt:  Letter to my younger self

You with the sad eyes…with the broken heart…with the lack of hope and pain and sadness and broken-ness.

I promise you.  You will come out on the other side.  You will laugh again.  Your heart will feel light.  It’s true what they say—this too shall pass—and it will.  I promise.

And when you emerge on the other side, you will be amazed at how changed you are.  You are vulnerable but courageous, compassionate, softer, kinder.  I think if you try to imagine yourself six years from where you are now, you will not recognize yourself.  You will wonder where ambition, hardness, forcefulness, your go-getting-never-say-die spirit have gone.  And they’re gone because you don’t need them anymore.  Funnily enough, maybe you’ve never needed them in the first place.

I’m glad you’re asking for—and receiving—help.  There’s no need to do this alone.  Allow yourself to receive.  Allow yourself to be open to grace.  It is the only way you’re going to get through this.

Only grace, my darling.

I learned about what I valued at this time by writing about my greatest luxury.  I fell in love with my life again by listing down 20 things I loved about it.  I was able to plan for the last four months of the year by using the prompt “What I want to accomplish before 2016 ends.”  I understood my purpose for working.

I was grateful for the 15 minutes I spent every night with my journal, my fountain pen and my list of prompts.  It was my chance to intuitively tap into what mattered to me, what drove me and the wisdom that lies inside.

If you weren’t able to join the challenge, you can take any prompt and just write about it as you journal.  Or  start with any month and do the journaling challenge for yourself.

If you joined the challenge, tell me about your experience by writing in the comments below.

Photo by Ian Schneider, Unsplash.com.


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