Joyful Journaling: Write yourself happy.
By Katie Wells.
Since we are the heroes and heroines of our own stories, why not make it a story we love?
A journal is a place where we write our story. We talk to ourselves in our journals. We take time to pay attention to our needs and desires, to discover what is going on for us. We can gain some clarity.
I let go of all of my journals just before I last moved house. It was not something I could ever have imagined doing before the very moment I did it.
I had been moving my many journals around with me for years. I had some sense that they were precious to keep, these words and emotions and ideas that I have been recording for so long.
Precious, so that I could look back on them, so that I could glean all the amazing Aha moments, and so that when I die, just like in the movies, my family will weep and smile as they read my memoirs.
Yet, I had this tendency to journal most prolifically when I felt bad, when things weren’t going the way I thought I’d like, when I had things I wanted to get off my chest.
Writing things down helped me to soothe the torrents of emotion, in the same way that making a to-do list stops all the to-do’s flying around chaotically in my mind and body.
For a year or so, while I was working with The Artist’s Way, I was writing morning pages. For this, one is to write three pages each morning upon waking of whatever comes out, stream of consciousness style, but with no attention to style; just whatever comes, no matter how petty or unpoetic.
For a while, this was exciting, it really did seem to clear me of unnecessary mind chatter and stories at the beginning of the day.
What emerged for me though, was that I was just writing a lot of the same stuff every day, over and over. And it happened to be stuff about life not being how I wanted it to be.
I realized that I was concreting all these stories by writing them down each day and suddenly I saw those writings as toxic waste that I just needed to dispose of.
When I got rid of my journals, I allowed myself to go through them all and tear out any pages that were inspiring or poignant, poetic or spiritual. Eventually I ended up with very few pages that I wanted to keep.
The rest of my journals were full of stories and worries about times in my life that had passed. It was the greatest relief to let them go.
Something then changed in my journaling…
These days, I write in my journal when I want to explore spiritually, when I want to be expressive and creative and when I am inspired. I have started to journal about the life I want to live, and the gratitude I have for what I have in my life. I journal stories that are full of possibility and excitement.
I write inspiring messages to myself, and I celebrate the good work that I am doing. When a difficult situation arises and I need to get it off my chest, I can still write about it, and it helps me to observe it more clearly, but I often don’t keep these writings around for long.
It is important not to ignore or deny what comes up that doesn’t feel good, but equally, there is no need to dwell on it or to carve the story more deeply.
It is a very powerful practice to journal with positivity and gratitude. When I write this way, I am writing affirmations for myself each time I write. The more I tell myself these positive messages, the more I see their truth emerge in my life — the power of positive thought and intention.
“When you begin to understand the Law of Attraction, and you understand that which is like unto itself is drawn, then it is easier and easier to understand that you are offering a signal, and the entire Universe responds.
And when you finally get that, and you begin to exercise some deliberate control about the signal that you offer, then it really begins to be fun, because then you recognize that nothing happens outside of your creative control.
There are no things that happen by chance or by circumstance. There is nothing that is happening because of something you vibrated a long time ago or in a past life. It is not about what you were born into.
It is only about what you are, right now, in this red hot fresh moment emitting.” ~ Abraham
It’s a simple practice, and fun…
… dedicate a notebook or journal,
Use your journal to express your gratitude for what you have created in your life already.
Use it to dream, imagine and create a new story that feels even better.
Use it to write about the things you love about yourself, the things you admire in yourself.
Use it to encourage and support yourself on your journey.
“This diary is my kief, hashish, and opium pipe. This is my drug and my vice. Instead of writing a novel, I lie back with this book and a pen, and dream, and indulge in refractions and defractions… I must relive my life in this dream. This dream is my only life.” ~ Anais Nin
Katie Wells works with healing energies, and makes chai a lot. She is passionate about her journey toward greater wholeness, and about supporting others on theirs. She finds joy in the simple pleasures of community, home, family, garden, creativity, motherhood. She is a gentle rebel(le), a budding expression of what has been before and of what is re-emerging. You can follow her on her website.