How to Use Journaling to Open to Greater Possibilities for Your Life by Eric Teplitz
The rapid rate of change in our world can be disorienting and anxiety-producing.
Moreover, we are always changing, as well. Our bodies change, our health can change (for the better or worse), our desires and priorities change, our relationships change and evolve, our interests can change, and our work lives inevitably go through changes.
Journaling is an invaluable tool for centering ourselves amidst this sea of constant change.
But in addition to helping us cope with and adapt to changes life throws our way, we can also use journaling to initiate changes in our lives.
Through a regular practice of showing up at the page, we can entertain options a younger version of ourselves (sometimes younger by only a month, a week, or even a single day!) might not have considered.
Here are three tips for how you can use journaling to open yourself to new and greater possibilities:
1. Tune in to your authentic feelings before making decisions.
Often we don’t realize what we think, or how we actually feel, about something until we take the time, privately, to write about it. Before making a decision, be sure to consult your inner wisdom. Brainstorm options in your journal and tune in to how you honestly feel about each one of them. A good decision reflects how your best/highest/noblest self would act while also honoring your own needs, desires, and healthy boundaries.
2. Ask yourself empowering questions.
In your journal, ask yourself questions such as these:
- What do I really want?
- What exploratory steps can I take in the direction of what I desire/what my soul is craving?
- How can I hold myself accountable? Make sure I don’t disregard what is important to me? Help myself succeed?
- Whom can I enlist for support? Who are some allies I can seek advice, encouragement, guidance, perspective, ideas, or inspiration from? (This could include authors, teachers, philosophers, sages, artists, historical figures, or anyone else you admire, in addition to people you know personally.)
- What almost always works for me/helps me?
- What else might help?
- What are some things I haven’t tried yet?
- If fear were not an issue, what else might I try or consider?
- What would my most courageous self do?
- How can I make myself proud?
- What must I insist on making time for?
- What would be the path of least regret for me?
- What’s the worst that could happen, and what’s the best that could happen?
- How would I advise a close, dear friend if they presented the same question/problem/issue/dilemma?
3. Use the power of your imagination.
Describe in detail a scenario in which you might thrive. Allow yourself the freedom to fantasize about ideal situations, circumstances, companions, and your “dream life” if you could craft it just as you wish. Really indulge; don’t hold back! Include vivid details about anything you like: your ideal lover, career, friends, support system, place(s) you spend your time, lifestyle. You can run through this exercise as many times as you like, coming up with variations or entirely different scenarios.
The point is not to manifest your vision exactly as you conceive it through some act of hocus-pocus. The point is to allow yourself to really get to the heart of what it is you desire, how you want to spend your time, what you hope to achieve, and how you want to live. Who knows? Maybe parts of this vision will come true just as you describe! Maybe aspects of it are not as pipe dreamish as they first appear; maybe they are, in fact, accessible to you right now, or could be after taking a simple action step or two. Or: maybe there are some immediate and practical ways in which you can get the same underlying needs met through some tweaks of your current situation.
Writing things down is powerful and is often the first step in realizing desired outcomes, if only because it focuses our attention on them and allows our brains to get to work on ways in which they might be realized. An idea immediately becomes more “alive” once it is captured on the page rather than left hanging in the clouds of your consciousness.
Know that greater possibilities are out there, always. And journaling in the ways described above can be an effective way to tune into them. Good luck!
About the Author: Eric Teplitz is a writer, musician, teacher, and personal coach who is passionate about helping others realize their potential for greater creativity and fulfillment. His website is: www.ericteplitz.com.
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