December 7, 2016

Journaling for Success

“The most important promises are the ones I make to myself.”
- Maryanne Radmacher

• I use tarot and astrology as a daily meditation tool, to focus on my career, my relationships, and my creativity. They serve as moment in my journey where I look at the map of my life and decide which direction to take. But I don’t just stay stuck looking at the map - journaling is one of the steps I take to put into action what I have been contemplating.

• You can have many different kinds of journals, that you write in at different times of your life. Just as your checkbook is a record of your spending habits, journals can reflect your patterns and serve as a reminder of the positive “emotional deposits” of life.
• Kinds of journals: Business notes, daily affirmations, dreams (night and day), poetry, sketches, coloring books, blank books or notebook paper put into a binder, a photo album or scrap books, engagement calenders.

• Who is your audience? Well, you, of course, but it also could be your children, your spouse or lover, your business colleagues, your therapist, your best friend.

• Privacy: there is so much temptation to read someone else’s journal. When my lover read mine, I stopped writing for 5 or 6 years. When getting divorced, I read my spouses' journal and found out things I really didn’t want to know. Talk about Pandora’s box.

• There is a lot of power in writing in your journal (or on loose leaf paper) all your thoughts and feelings, and then burning or otherwise destroying them. Recently I drew a horrible picture of myself being controlled by my last lover - it was quite a relief to destroy it.

• Time: even just five minutes a day can grow into a disciplined practice (like flossing your teeth or exercise). This is time for YOU, time to focus on achieving something you desire. keeping a little notebook in your bag is helpful for those odd moments of standing in the bank line. Putting the TV on mute and jotting down thoughts during commercials can reactivate your brain waves.

• Your other favorite tool is your PEN: do you like blue or black ink? Pencil? Colored pencils? Markers? Paints? I highly recommend crayons...
• To quote from the 5 of Wands card - Keep your expression flowing. Stop editing yourself and let go of concern about what comes out. Be playful. The openness of play allows for inventiveness and newness in a way that high expectations do not. (from The Tarot of Transformation by Willow Arlenea & Jasmin Lee Cori)

• You are writing your story and you can change your story - one exercise I did was to divide the page into columns and in the first write a sentence that begins “I wish...” the second column is the same sentence that starts with “I will”. This takes you out of wishful thinking into your will power, because it pushes you to the next step of figuring out HOW to achieve your goal. Examples:

I wish I had more money to I WILL have more money
I wish I was friends with my ex to I WILL be friends with my ex
I wish I had more tome to write in my journal to I WILL have more time to write in my journal

• Other exercises:
- Goals in the next month, year, five years
- List what you are afraid of. Burn it.
- List what makes you happy. Keep it.
- Pull a tarot card, medicine (animal) card, or angel card. Sketch it.
- Cartoons of you
- Songs, poems, quotes by others that inspire you
- Same as above, go from “I fear...” to “I wonder...”
- Pure color (finger painting)
- Create a couples journal, or a friendship journal
- That letter you would never send
- Who am I?
- Love letters to yourself

• Some book recommendations:
Earth Art Critters coloring books by Sue Coccia
The Coloring Book for Big Girls by Sudie Rukusin
When Your Heart Speaks, Take Good Notes: The Healing Power of Writing by Susan Borkin
The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity -- by Julia Cameron
The Creative Journal by Lucia Capacchione

“Turn your wish bone, daughter, into a back bone”

- author unknown