JournalChat Live FB Video: Why it is important to have relevance in your journaling practiceRead Now
Here is the video replay from my first #JournalChat Live Facebook Video in our private group. I share how my journaling practice is relevant for me in my intuitive watercolor painting practice as well as in discovering life patterns where I want to create positive change. Plus I share news about my website, my blog, and social media and the ongoing #JournalChat OPEN HOUSE which you can contribute to right now.
Here are some links in connection with what I shared in the video:
JournalChat Live OPEN HOUSE
21 Day Refresh Intensive
My post on Dialogue called Making Conversation
Record any life patterns that are making you feel stuck and use dialogue to ask questions and get answers. Use alternating hands: dominant for the question and non dominant for the answer.
Art Journaling/ Doodle Prompt:
Use a page or spread in your art journal or create a doodle that emphasizes a life pattern you want to change and what you want it to look like in your re-alignment.
One of the things I often note with the issue of keeping a consistent journaling practice is the lack of relevance with what we write. Many folks start up keeping a journal but never find their particular groove of what really matters to them. They often find it depressing to write down how they're feeling or it just gets down right boring since they don't see their life as very interesting, maybe even not worth recording.
Of course, as host of #JournalChat Live for over 6 years, I beg to differ. Every life is worth recording because it's from your point of view, like no other, and your JOURNALING VOICE MATTERS. That's one of the reasons I determined to give folks a chance to share their journaling stories on their blogs and in social media statuses by offering to share their posts where #JournalChat is visible both here on my website (with reciprocating link) and here---> (Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn).
Of course you are welcome to share how your journaling has had the greatest relevance to your life this year. Just follow the guidelines here.
With today's post, I wanted to share with you how my journaling practice has had the greatest relevance for me in 2016...
Although I keep a journal daily, with both am and pm entries, and with evening doodles to make it visually fun as well, there is one technique and purpose that has shown up in my journal pages this year that I think might be helpful to you as well.
One of my favorite techniques is making conversation, or what most call Dialogue. With who?, you may ask. Well, with just about anything or yourself (all parts of you). My aim with dialogue is focused on my personal well being on all levels. So when something isn't right on any of those personal levels, I will head to my journal to figure out what went wrong and what I can do to get re-aligned.
And you know what? I always get an answer to my dilemma. It amazes me what I learn just from asking the questions I want answers to. Of course, it's imperative that I actually do what I'm directed to with the answers I receive (within reason, of course). That's one of the reasons why I know keeping a journal can be a powerful tool to promote and initiate positive change that leads to personal empowerment.
You might think it odd to ask a question of yourself and actually get an answer. And maybe at first it feels a bit strange. But if you're serious about getting what you need, that's often a good prerequisite toward success. You may need to do it more than once if you haven't done it before. But, don't be shy. After all, it's your journal. And it's there for you to help you figure stuff out. And dialogue can be the perfect way to get you there.
When you actually do dialigue in your journal, just use the names to suit your situation, whether it's an emotion, a body part, a situation, a relationship or anything else you need clarity on.
Here's some dialogue to make you smile:
Me: Do you understand the value of talking to yourself (Your Higher Self) in your journal?
You: I'm not sure. I guess it's worth a try.
You betcha! (Enjoy the conversation and create positive change in your life!)
Is there a particular situation or pain you are experiencing that you need answers to? Record this situation in detail in your journal. Now begin a dialogue with the part of it that frustrates you or pains you the most and start asking questions. Pause for the answers, listening intuitively for what you need.
Art Journal Prompt:
Using the word Dialogue as your prompt, doodle conversation that has great meaning for you. Use images that validate how you feel about this conversation and what result you would like to see from the situation this conversation stems from to help you gain clarity.
The doodles I feature here at Refresh Daily are ones taken directly from my personal journal that I record in daily. I do a doodle every evening to honor my daily experience. I choose a word or phrase that encapsulates my day and then design a doodle to showcase it with fun, fabulous color and design, which I greatly enjoy doing.
For this doodle, Totally Unexpected, I determined the words themselves based on what came into my path that day. Most of what I experienced I didn't see coming, both negative and positive. I was challenged with some situations and yet pleasantly surprised with others at the same time. You know how life can be truly dichomatic, where on one hand, you're totally excited about one thing and on the other, you feel thrown off your feet due to circumstances not in your control.
That day was one of those days. And you know what's amazing? As I realized how tough and yet successful my day was, I was thankful to be sitting and doodling, having made my way through!
The word, Totally, was drawn with letters compressed together, with arrows aiming toward the center, to emphasize the contraction of experience. The word, unexpected, also has letters that overlap, as if to present one thing after the other, and the sense of responsibility that comes with taking care of business.
The emphasizing marks in yellow and red show the excitement of something good that I didn't see coming at all and was very glad for it.
I filled the letters in with watercolor markers, with base color and several colors for shading to give the letter space dimension.
I really like using arrows for emphasis and often fill them with stippled, colored dots for fun visual interest.
Have you ever had a day that seems totally overwhelming from unexpected responsibility and yet you had a totally surprising experience that you didn't see coming that made you elated at the same time? Describe this dichotomy in detail and perhaps, share anything you would have done differently and what you would do the same. Congratulate yourself for having successfully dealt with the challenges and for your wins too!
Art Journal Prompt:
Using Dichotomy or Totally Unexpected, as word prompts, create a spread that honors how you handle difficulty and showcase your successes at the same time.
Refresh Daily: A Total EclipseRead Now
A Total Eclipse. A Recent event with the blood moon, starting late in the evening. When my husband, Bill, mentioned its occurrence, we decided to check it out. We tried the back yard, but with too many trees, we had no visibility. So I suggested we try the front yard.
Much to our pleasure, we had a good view standing in just the right spot between our live oaks. The eclipse was well under way but we saw just a sliver of the moon still visible so we were just in time. That was a memorable moment as we saw a rare event in progress, just the two of us relishing our time together.
Although blood moons are rare, and so are total ecliipses, this one happening together was a true anomaly.
But what about life eclipses...eclipses of the Heart?
When we feel overwhelmed or are in a dark or uneasy or unsure place. When we're off our center and need to get back.
When we face life challenges, especially those kind that persist, bringing chronic trouble to our weary souls.
These are emotional eclipses.
And what do they accomplish?
They leave us feeling joyless, disheartened, and maybe, sometimes, resentful or bitter. Yuk. Doesn't sound like much fun, does it?
No, I didn't think so either.
So how do we prevent or reduce eclipses of our hearts? In other words, how do we manage challenging situations without losing our joy and enjoyment of life on a daily basis?
Well, that's where daily refreshment comes in...and a refreshed mindset.
How we view our challenge can make a difference in how we respond to it. If we see the situation as out of our control, it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. So we need to get a fresh view and transform those dark spaces into areas of clarity, truth and light.
Sometimes this takes time in our journals, expressing just exactly what is bothering us so we can figure out our eclipsing triggers and their source. Getting it down on paper can make all the difference in gaining clarity and figuring out our most effective and authentic action steps toward healing and well being.
When we can get to a place where we have a clearer view and a greater understanding of how we can respond, taking care of ourselves and still being responsible, caring individuals, we can experience, once again, inner joy, gratitude and that sense of being Aligned with Who We Are, back to center.
This is where we feel relief, release, and rest for our souls and healing to our minds and hearts.
And when we take the time to engage in those refreshing activities that speak to our hearts, we can create a place of comfort, of relishment, of honoring Who We Are, which can really enhance our daily experience and, perhaps, even minimize the effects of those eclipses, so they don't have a chance to completely extinguish our joy, but simply initiate more time to care for ourselves more deeply.
Perhaps that can be the silver lining, like the silver of the moon, which shines once the eclipse is over. In all of its beautiful glory.
Shine on, dear one, and feel that fulness of joy deep in your soul.
Have you experienced a Total Eclipse of your heart with a disheartening or challenging situation? Detail your eclipsing triggers with the intent of getting to the heart of the matter. **Describe your emotions and record any resonating situations that you may recall in connection with your current situation. Then detail how you can take action to transform this dark spot into a place of clarity and light.
Art Journaling Prompt:
Find images of an eclipse to Honor your Challenge, validating your emotions but also with the visual purpose of gaining clarity, with whatever colors, textures and text that resonates most powerfully for you. Let this be a healing process that brings you to where you feel you can shine once again.
**Please note: If you find this activity too overwhelming, you may want to speak to a trusted friend or therapist if necessary.
Copyright 2015 by Dawn Herring
Copyright 2015 Graphic Header by Dawn Herring
Dawn engages in many roles: As Writer/Blogger and Artist/Creative and Founder of Refresh with Dawn Herring: Where Art and JOY Align, She enjoys sharing from her vast experience as award-winning, life-long artist and leader in the field of written journaling, offering encouragement and proven tips to other journal keepers. Dawn's focus is on written journal keeping, artistic expression and finding your Creative Voice, and positive change that leads personal empowerment, encouraging you to leave your authentic and positive mark in the world. Dawn is a Commercial artist, hand letterer/illustrator and writer/blogger and enjoys sharing insights, humor, and encouragement as she shares from her life experiences as a woman, wife, mother of two grown daughters and as a Grandparent to a special needs grandson. She enjoys keeping a journal and reading spiritual texts to help keep the light on. May JOY Align with Your Creative Heart.