Hi Loves! I am going to start off the new year talking about journaling which is one of my favorite things I do to take care of myself.
Journaling is a great tool to get to know yourself better, examine what is going on in your brain and take stock of what you want to keep and what you want to let go of. Pregnancy, preconception and postpartum are great times to really get in touch with yourself and what you want. In this newsletter I am going to go over how to start journaling and give you a few thought prompts and exercises so that you can get going!
What do I need to start a journal?
Simple! Just pen and paper. Or a computer. Some people really love to have a dedicated journal for all their journaling. For me, I found this gave me a constant excuse NOT to do it because said journal was not with me in the moment. I have multiple journals and pads of paper in my house and at work and in my purse- anywhere I might want to take 5 min and write. This is what keeps my habit consistent! I don’t usually save my writing but there is something I want to work on or revisit I type it up in my Notes app on my phone. Or I can take a photo with my phone.
How much time do I need?
I set aside at least 5-10 min a day but you can start with as little as 3 min. Just set a timer or play one song on your phone and then write whatever comes to you.
Another journaling tool are journal prompts. Our brains love to answer questions and have something to do.
If you are perseverating on problem:
-What is the problem? WHY is this a problem? Then ask why at least 5 times and you will really get to core of why this particular thing is a problem for you.
-You can also ask: What am I making it mean about me? This can really help you become more objective about how you are assigning meaning to different things in your mind.
This whole process is good for showing us where we are in our thinking. The first step is awareness of what is, and most importantly, awareness without judgement of your beautiful perfect/imperfect human brain that is creating all sorts of thoughts just like any human brain does.
Once we know what we are thinking, we can put our thoughts through the Model*. The Model is a great too for examining our thoughts and how our thinking creates how we feel and what we do in the world- in other words out thoughts/beliefs/attitudes/mindsets actually create our experiences in the world. AND if we want to create a different experience, then we can intentionally generate the thoughts/beliefs/mindsets/attitudes that get us those results.
So, here is the Model:
The model has five lines:
C = circumstance
T = thought
A = action
R = result
The circumstance is the fact of what is going on- pure neutral fact. No illustrations or fancy descriptors. Numbers, dates, times etc. Neutral facts that everyone would agree on.
The thought is whatever thought you are having about the circumstance. It is one sentence. One thought per model. The thought is never a question- if you are thinking a question let your brain answer the question and use that thought.
The feeling is a one word feeling that is generated when you think the thought about the specific circumstance.
The action is any actions or inactions that you take when you are thinking the thought and feeling the feeling.
The result is the cumulative result of all those actions.
Right now I am typing this on my phone because my computer is working on some updates.
C: Computer updating
T: This is annoying!
A: complain about it, procrastinate writing the newsletter until the updates are done. Feel sorry for myself that this is inconveniencing me.
R: I procrastinate and feel annoyed
BUT instead I switched to this model:
C: Computer updating
T: I can type on my phone!
A: type newsletter on phone while computer is updating
R: I get the newsletter typed
Once we see what our current model is creating in our life, we can keep it or change it depending on what we want! If you are interested in learning more about journaling and the model or interested in pregnancy coaching, please book your free consult at this link!
*The Model was created by Brooke Castillo at The Life Coach School.