Modern Day Journaling

The 5th tool I’d like to share from my toolbox is a new version of an old standby…. Journaling.

Journaling is an important self care tool because it is a great way to 1. Keep track of your thoughts and feelings 2. Discover patterns in your life, and 3. Shines light on the places where you have grown vs. the areas you still need support.

In other words, Journaling helps us to see not only where we started and where we are now, but also how we got here.

I think what keeps many of us from utilizing this easy affordable tool is the misconception that journaling has to be time consuming, tediously detailed, only kept in a special journal or notebook, or be written in full sentences. None of this is true!

We can use our cool gadgets and new technology to make journaling modern, simple, easy, and portable. Laptops, cell phones, iPods, and daily planners can all be easily transformed into modern day journals.

Here are some examples of how to turn your favorite technical gadget into a useful modern journal.

iPods

  • Create a “week in review” playlist by adding one new song each day of the week that sums up how that day went for you. Repeat this process each week.

Cell Phones

  • Using your calendar function you can either add descriptive words that summarize your day, or rate your enjoyment of tasks once completed.
  • You can also text yourself descriptive words, or even just a smiley face, when good things happen through out your day.
  • Or you can take pictures through out your day or week to document your highs and lows.

Email Accounts

  • Create a journal for yourself through email. Take a minute each day to type out a few sentences describing your day and then email them to yourself; this can be done at work or home, or if you have email on your cell phone while waiting in line, sitting in a waiting room, on your lunch break, basically anywhere. Next, create a specific folder dedicated to Journaling in your email account so they don’t get lost, or clog up your inbox.

Laptop/Desktops- There are so many communication programs to choose from, pick one that you like and make it your own. For example, you could….

  • Record MP3’s of your thoughts
  • Create picture journals by adding favorite photo’s into your favorite’s on Flickr
  • Create an Excel Spreadsheet tracking descriptive words for each day

Flower Essences

The 4th tool that I’d like to share from my personal toolbox is Flower Essences.

Flower Essences are a natural way of restoring balance within our bodies and minds by helping us release negative emotions, memories, and blocked or stagnant pocked of negative energy we may be holding on to.

Flower Essences work on an “energetic level” to align our systems- physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. We’ve all had the experience of knowing some has entered the room without seeing him or her come in; we feel the energy in the room change and are able to feel their presence- this feeling is what is meant by an “energetic level.”

Flower Essences can be used to treat a wide range of presenting issues and concerns. A few examples include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Worry
  • Fear
  • Lack of abundance
  • Grief and Sadness
  • Anger
  • Burn Out
  • Chakra Alignment
  • Digestion
  • Heartbreak
  • Stress

Where to find Flower Essences

Most health food or supplement stores will carry some brands of Flower Essences. Bach is the most widely found brand. Locally, Whole foods, Supper Supplements, PCC and Dandelion Botanical Company all carry Bach or another brand of Flower Essences.

Personally, I use Green Hope Farm for all my Flower Essence purchases. Mainly because they do not use alcohol as their stabilizer, so are the only wheat/gluten free brand of Flower Essences I have found. But also, they are an incredibly generous and knowledgeable company with amazing personal customer service.

Check out Green Hope Farm list of Common Concerns and see what Flower Essences my be able to do for you!

CommonConcerns-Updated10-09

Treasuring

Another favorite tool in my personal toolbox is called Treasuring.

What is Treasuring?

Treasuring is similar to positive thinking, but instead of taking what is and trying to see it from a positive lens, you dream about already having what you want. In treasuring you pick something you really desire like love, money, a home and spend 10 minutes imagining you already have it.  The more detail you bring into this imagination exercise the better!

The goal of this exercise is letting yourself believe that you already have the desired thing and then letting your mind move backwards in the time line of how you got it.

One of my favorite authors, Martha Beck, describes this technique beautifully in her book Steering by Starlight.

How to use Treasuring

Treasuring is another, and sometimes easier, way to bring positive thinking into your life.  Remember this post about Gratitude and why gratitude is important?  Treasuring is a simple way to create some of these new positive pathways, I discussed in that post, in our brains.

I have found that because treasuring involves more imagination, and already having what you desire, many people find treasuring easier to do and more enjoyable than positive thinking.  Myself included.

Some days or events are so hurtful it’s too hard to try to see them positively, this is when I turn to treasuring.  It’s a great, healthy, and easy escape from whatever might being going on in my life.  You’ll notice that once you’ve spent 10 (or more) minutes dreaming about having what you desire, whatever is actually going on seems smaller and less hurtful.

I find I am able to see the current situation differently, from a more positive place, after spending some time treasuring.

When to use Treasuring

Martha Beck recommends you do a treasuring meditation 10 minutes a day for 30 days.   While I think this 30 day goal is totally useful and highly recommend it, I have found treasuring to be really useful even in smaller periods of time. So if creating a goal to do this exercise for a week feels more attainable for you, go with that!

I find with my clients, breaking this assignment into weekly goals vs. monthly goals makes getting started much easier.  Also, I have discovered that my clients dreams actually get bigger and evolve if we re-evaluate the assignment each week.  It seems setting a monthly goal can leave us feeling as if we need to do the same thing over and over again for the whole 30 days.

**An Interesting Thing About Treasuring**

I can always tell which of my clients are doing their treasuring homework, Martha Beck says the same thing in her book.  Treasuring tends to decrease the physical appearance of stress in people.  After spending a week doing this exercise my clients actually look different- lighter, younger, healthier, more confident, glowing and radiant.

So what do you think?  Is there room in your toolbox for treasuring???