I love affirmations, don’t you?
Positive affirmations are the language of self-talk designed to reprogram your subconscious and boost your vibrational frequency. It might seem strange to do. However, think about the fact that you probably currently use negative self-talk all the time without noticing.
Right now I have been playing with affirmations around my vision. I’ve been getting clarity on my vision, mission and values to that I can set the direction of my life and business.
When I started on my vision it was long and rambling. Over several iterations, I got it right down to…
To inspire my community to heal through writing and write to heal the world.
I’m still working on it and I’ve been adding in some positive affirmations to bring it alive.
However, things keep popping into my mind to derail me. How does the mind do that? How very dare it!
I’m not saying anything like calling myself stupid, but all the same there is my gremlin Gregor nibbling away at me.
It’s easy though to let the Gregors do this, because that is how we are wired. Perhaps Gregor is trying to keep me safe?
How many times have you done something and called yourself stupid or looked in the mirror and allowed negative thoughts coming to mind?
I know when my spine fractured I found it oh so hard to say anything nice to myself.
Negative self-talk affects your confidence, lowers your vibration, and places the focus of your life on the wrong things.
To change yourself, you can use positive affirmations about any issue you want to change. Using the fracture as an example I started to say I am healed, healthy and happy and my bones are healthy and healed. What a difference that made. Naturally, I did more than just chant affirmations, but these played a powerful part in my healing.
With my vision, I am going one step further and making up little ditties. Please don’t laugh…
I joyfully enjoy the fruits of my biz. It’s healthy, wealthy and full of whizz.
What about this one? Every day in every way. My business shines like a sunshine ray.
Ok, so I won’t win a prize for literature, the point is to make them memorable.
To use positive affirmations to help you bring about change I have these tips.
When you start to write what it is that you want, or in my case my vision, notice what comes up. Before you start using positive affirmations, be more mindful about when and how you’re using negative self-talk. Note these in your journal, very soon you will start to see a pattern which you can then choose to consciously change.
After you write down those negative things, you might see that there are some that fall into like categories. Note what these categories are and perhaps you can choose a priority and notice what happens when you focus on changing these.
For example, if when you are getting ready in the morning, you see yourself in the mirror and say something not so great to yourself – you’ll know that it is in the category of self-esteem. Likewise, when you have those doh moments, these too could fall into the same category, especially if you catch yourself using not so useful language.
You can then create positive affirmations that will raise your self-esteem. “I’m grateful to my body, for everything she does and helping me to be happy, healthy and healed.” Even if you have problems, when you do this, you’ll likely make better choices during the day, and will remember to treat yourself with loving-kindness.
It works, I am proof.
Write down your positive affirmations. You could write your affirmations on small slips of paper and put them in a jar and grab one when you need it. Write them on pretty note cards or post-it notes and stick them where you can see them. For example, you can put one of your affirmations on the bathroom mirror, or on your door so you see it as you’re leaving.
When I was going through my big healing I would write love me notes on post-its and pop them on the fridge before bed. They worked a treat. I always forgot that I had written them and then smiled in delight in the morning.
When you are saying your affirmations in private, say them aloud. When you say them aloud, not only do you hear the vibration in your voice, you are sending this out to the Universe who is waiting to support you.
It’s a good job no one can see me when I am walking the dogs. Not only am I saying them aloud, but I also practise tapping on certain points.
Saying positive affirmations is great, but you need to choose to make changes. Writing in your journal will open your mind to what is going on in your life and from there you can make conscious choices.
As you practice using positive affirmations you will change. Saying your affirmations combined with good action changes your perceptions and this is what we want to make a note of.
When you reflect at the end of the week or month you can join the dots backwards and see how far you have grown and how your life has changed.
101 days includes a daily positive affirmation, a quote and something to reflect on. These are delivered daily to your inbox.
All you need is a journal and some time to write and reflect.
All through lockdown, there’s been a sense of restriction of not being allowed to… No one wants to be told that they can’t do anything. I know I don’t. Over the years, I have seen me rebel quite strongly to the phrase ‘you can’t do this’. Yet when lockdown arrived, I complied.
Sure I went through a period of feeling pissed off that I couldn’t go and visit my mum or meet friends at the beach for tea and cake or shop in my favourite shops – they are not really favourite, it’s just that some shops have the things I prefer.
Having my freedom taken away has been quite a thing for me. As a young girl, when my dad said no, you have to be in at ten, I hated him. So much so that I’d wait for my parents to go to bed and climb out of the bedroom window. Once he was so mad, he smacked me around the head with an alarm clock. My memory is not so great, but it could have been one of the nights where I just sat outside of the house, just so I was not doing as I was told.
However, during this period, apart from the odd meltdown, I have stayed at home and stayed safe. I thought about what I could instead say yes to. How would it feel if instead of bucking the system, I focused on being grateful for all I had and what I could say yes to?
What about you what would it be like to see the world through new eyes, ask yourself, what can I say yes to today?
Remember the Universe is listening to you all the time and is ready to respond to your energy. What is it about not only your desires, but the small things that inspires you enough that you want to say yes, and you want the Universe to say yes too as well?
I believe saying yes and gratitude are intrinsically linked. When I am grateful for something and fully appreciate it, I feel differently, and I feel like saying yes to things. My perspective on the world alters, and my heart expands to receive more.
Before you move onto your yes list, remind yourself of at least three things that you appreciate at this moment. This morning as I write this, I can hear the birds, I love their morning song, it reminds me that the day will soon break and I can take the dogs for a walk. The early mornings are not so cold now, there will be a few dew drops hanging on the long grasses that line the path, and there is apart from Mother Nature, our feet crunching on the stony ground and the dog’s breath, silence.
On the bed Angel is curled up, I can hear the occasional sigh, Marley is on the floor, snoring and Ferdy is inside my bed. The three furry ones have kept me sane and smiling. Every day they remind of the joy of a simple life. A treat, a walk, a tickle and stealing a lick from my dinner plate. Their play and antics create miles of smiles in my heart.
Although I can’t see my mum, I chat with her every day. She is not as laid back like me, frets about the virus and all manner of things. She lives, unlike me, in a built-up area and is very restricted. She keeps herself occupied with her writing, watching TV and chatting on Whatsapp with friends. It’s good to hear her voice.
When I think of these things, it becomes easier to say yes and to allow the river of appreciation and yes to flow together through my life and heart.
Make a list of everything that you would like to say YES to. I’m saying yes to:
I remembered that I had a gorgeous necklace and bracelet that was a gift some twenty years ago. I’d been taught to keep things for best, and so I rarely wore this. It had travelled with me through the iterations of my life. I even once tried to sell it when I was desperate for cash but chose instead to keep it. When lockdown arrived, I decided that life was too short to keep things for best, because today is always the best day.
Then there are the bigger things that I’d like to say yes to.
When you have made your list, go and do them. And if they are things that seem a little out of reach, be open to receiving them so that the Universe knows what to create a pathway to for you. All the other things – go and do them. Also, say yes when you get asked to do something even if you feel like you don’t want to. You may not get asked again.
Today is a beautiful day to appreciate all that you have and to be open by saying yes to more.
Join The Journaling Club – where you will get a monthly journaling book (PDF) and exercises to keep you motivated. This month is all about saying yes and starting a gratitude practice.
When May springs to mind what is the first thing that you think about? For me, it is that saying ne’er cast a clout until May is out. In other words, don’t get fooled into thinking its summer and put on your summer clothes until May is over.
What about last month when I ended the April journaling prompts blog with April showers brings May flowers. One this is for sure where I live it has been raining almost non stop for about six weeks, which is very unusual. What this has brought is a gorgeous array of wildflowers everywhere. It is simply divine.
May, of course, as there is a possibility. Will you start this month consider what possibilities are ahead of you?
Mayhem which conjures up disorder and chaos. I like to think that chaos is a place we go to explore possibilities,
Mayweed, as the name suggests, is a weed, and I wonder what mind weeds need to be decluttered so that you can find your answers?
Mayhap, the old word for perhaps. Perhaps is you consider your possibilities, let the chaos come, weed the mind of the cannots and perhaps when you in the silence, your answers will come.
What about other words that May conjures up for you?
May is the fifth month, and a month for me that signals that summer is coming. It feels joyful, light and fun. It also feels abundant and exciting. There are also the festivals of Beltane and Samhain, so think of singing, dancing and making merry – which in the current climes you may have to do alone. Or perhaps you can get your friends on Houseparty (it’s an app) and have some fun.
As winter folds back into Mother Earth for a rest, everything else starts to really wake up. Seeds of ideas have already started to form, and the new shoots of these can begin to take shape.
Ideas are all inside and outside of you; they are everywhere. The question is really how do ideas come to you? Do they just pop into our minds or do ideas come as a result of lots of small things happening which when a good connection is made creates a new idea pathway, so that a bit more of that idea is known?
In every moment, we consume information through our five (or six) senses. These are laid down in your mind map using your language and coding structure waiting to be fertilised with another germ of an idea. All waiting to be joined by that one all-important connector, which creates the spark and drives it to the forefront of your mind until you get that eureka moment.
If you provide yourself with the opportunity to become creative by giving yourself space, people to collaborate with and time to reflect, you will be able to exchange and borrow ideas in order to cultivate new ones. Ideas can be incubated for years, but appear in what seems a moment with the right stimulus.
Your May mission is to create a list of ideas. They can be anything, the point is for you to just scribble. When you have your list of ideas, go and do something else, perhaps a walk. Better still sleep on them – I mean literally – pop then under your pillow.
Start sorting through your ideas and feel into your heart by asking how they resonate with where you are and what you want to create in the world.
Take out the shoulds and cannots. Discard anything that is not right for right now. Do not, however, disregard your ideas list, because later one of them will be the right idea for right now.
Write a little about how each idea would come to fruition and what that would mean to you. Why is this a great idea for you?
Feel into your desire. Is this desire heart or head led? Go with your heart. Without the passion of the heart, things might not get done.
Set your intention for the one idea you will work with during May.
Place your attention on your intention and take small daily actions to achieve what you most desire.
Set your goals and celebrate each milestone with cake (or your chosen reward device).
Don’t forget that some Mayweeds may pop up, when they do, make sure that you tell them, no thanks, not now and not ever. Talk these through with a friend or coach. Journal on them. The point is there will always be something that comes up to say, not good enough, not enough time, what’s the point, I can’t and other similar things. It happens to me and my route out, it to explore the root of these in my journal, reflect and ask – what if I can? What are they and what will you do to root them out?
I then envision with all of my senses this into being, and most of all, I feel how it feels to have created my best work yet. The imagination is a powerful thing, and it doesn’t know if something is real or not, so tell it that this thing is real and is done.
Affirm that you are a powerful creator, the Universe loves my idea and is sending me people who are looking for this thing.
Your idea might go something like this.
Idea: To create one piece of content that can be repurposed into a book, blogs and a course – I already have the idea… Of course, I do.
Intention: Is to create a system for this and that every month I create content that I love which I know my ideal client will love
Desire: I adore creating content which enables both myself and my clients to grow and discover more about themselves – this feeds my heart and soul
Goals: I make these SMART so that I know how and when I need to get this done. I need my first piece of content done by the first week of May. I am on it.
Attention: I then take small daily actions towards my goal. Mine would be to plan the content, look for what I can repurpose, write the content in its various forms and then publish each one at the appropriate time. I like to chunk and reward myself for getting things done.
Mind weeds: The ones coming up for me are I have just created six courses and three books, and I am tired. That’s why I took a week out before I started again. I was telling myself I was too tired.
Envision: I can both see and feel this content coming alive and my students giving me five stars.
Affirmation: I am a powerful creator. The Universe loves this idea and is supporting me all the way through the creation process and sending me people who will love this.
Your mission for May is to be your best creative self and bring your best idea to fruition.
Join The Journaling Club – where you will get a monthly journaling book (PDF) and exercises to keep you motivated..
You have started a lockdown journal, right?
I did and had no intention of turning it into anything. All I wanted was a space to record what was going on for me, to get it out and to heal.
What has happened instead is that the nakedness of my feelings shows me that a book or in my case a journal is needed.
A few events have had me in tears and in the doldrums. I could feel my jaw tightening as I did a regular body scan and chakra balance.
Anxious thoughts flowed. Not masses but I was aware of my old friend anger and while I am normally easily able to pick myself up, what I found was that I was feeling world pain.
I tripped on a twig, although I like to think it was an assassin, come to tell me to slow it down. It really was quite silly. It caught in my shoe laces and I went down.
Moments later I was crying, but soon my head was filled with people who were in terrible pain and suffering. Then I sobbed. I sobbed for humanity and how impotent I felt. How could I reach all of these people and save them? I had no idea – all I could do was cry while they swam in my mind.
But there is something I can do. I can use this experience to share my tools for getting back to a balanced stated.
And that is what my journal has shown me.
Journals are a great place to dump our stuff, but there are many more uses to a journal than to pour our deepest emotions, thoughts and feelings.
They give us so many more clues.
Right now you are being shown ways that you can support others. As you write what is going on, you will be able to see, just how you can help others.
One of my pieces of advice to anyone who is about to embark on writing a book is to get a journal for the journey. I also advise anyone who is about to embark on a journey of any kind to get a journal and write everything down.
Right now is a monumental journey. Not only for the world, but for you. Your journal will guide you as mine has.
I’ll be honest and tell you that I resisted creating another journal, but it is helping me to heal too.
In fact I am creating a set of small journaling books which are easy to use and consume. Because… Yes you have guessed it I am using my content in a different way to normal.
What you create will do the same for you.
Before we get to the emotion and cathartic stuff let’s look at the lockdown journal.
This is, I think, going to contain your biggest lessons so far and as such will show you the way to not only support yourself, but how you can help others.
I don’t know you or what you do, but look deeply the message is there.
Ask the question of spirit one night, sleep on it. The answer will be there in the morning.
You may like me shake your head and wonder why this subject. Trust.
What are you eating right now? What magical inventive recipes are you creating. I bet others would love these. Budgets might be tight and you may remember some of your grannies recipes. And what about family stories that go with these?
There is loads of scope for this one.
Right now I am seeing lots of people struggling with emotional eating and worrying about what they will look and feel like when this is over.
What advice do you have? How are you coping?
My lovely friend Mel Wakeman – famous for the Anti Diet Solution – has answers and can support you.
But what about you, how can you support others?
Now this is a bit tricky as you can’t travel right now. However, travel restrictions will be lifted. What about a guide to local travel and help to regenerate your local community?
I have a journal full of ideas and plans and these often become blog posts, courses, books and other products. It’s a great idea to keep a separate journal for moments of inspiration because who knows what rewards they will bring.
Just because we are locked down it doesn’t mean that we have to let our imaginations fall to the wayside.
When you look through your journal, there will be themes that jump out at you that you may want to explore. What is leaping out at you?
Before you go any further I have a few questions:-
These questions are designed to help you to uncover the purpose of you turning your journal content into a book.
If you don’t want to turn your journal into a book for others to read, you could type up your entries into a series of books which you keep for you and never sell. In which case you would go as far as step 15 in the list below.
In January 2018, my spine fractured and as I stared at the ceiling in those first few days, my journal became my saviour. Not only did my spine fracture there were other complications. I found myself going from wandering in the hills with my dogs to flat on my back with breathing difficulties.
Two weeks in and I decided I would write a book. My journal not only became my dump space, but it also held my research and thoughts around natural healing. After about a month I started to write the book. At this point, I didn’t know that I could heal myself, but if this makes sense I knew that my body knew how to heal and it would.
As I was writing the book, my journal was invaluable for me to get my facts straight and know the order of events. Without this record, I would have shared faulty memories.
During the process of writing and healing, I decided what the book would focus on and that would be mindset, finding your root cause and creating a natural healing plan.
I however, decided not to publish this book. Instead I created a series of journaling books because the power of journaling was what helped to save my life (along with all of the other things of course).
Plus, which is a biggie for me, I did not want an osteoporosis business.
After writing a another cathartic book called Journey To Self Love, also not published, I knew I had to do something. Instead, I created a passion project – a journaling and colouring book called Colour My Life, A Journey To Self Love.
Understanding your handwriting. You may find it hard to decipher your handwriting in which case you will have to best guess it. What you will find is that the story that you are rewriting will make more sense the second time around.
What to put in or leave out: If you are writing a memoir, treat this as a professional project and not an opportunity to name and shame. There is an art to writing a well-balanced book. I suggest that you write it all out and then edit the superfluous content out. Getting it out is greeaaaatttt!
You may still be in your story. Which is what you will be as we are still in lockdown. If you find that feelings arise around the content. You could work with a counselor, talk it through with a friend or partner, journal about what comes up or leave it for now.
What I would do, is plan and write the book, as I am going through it, as I did with the osteoporosis book. I knew I could reframe the outline later.
Let’s look at the process and hopefully it will inspire you to do the same.
This means reading through your journals and making a list of ideas that come to you. You are looking for recurring themes that resonate with you. Leave them to reflect and start to whittle your ideas down.
Action: Make a list of the ideas and themes that come to you. Do not censor them. When you are ready, pick up to 3 and get clear about why these and then pick the one.
When you look at the content, what questions are you asking yourself?
Action: Write these on post it notes.
As you look at your questions, themes and ideas, what is the story that brings this book idea together? My two themes were healing naturally and a journey to self-love.
Action: Write a short version of your story, just a couple of pages or may be a blog. This will give you an idea of how this could support your book.
There are many different kinds of books you could write. Will this be memoir, self-help or a combination? What about a book of journal entries with journaling prompts for the reader? Will you want to use this book for something else, such as building a business around this idea?
Think about the kinds of books you enjoy reading and consider how your book could be written in this style. There is little point writing a book you wouldn’t want to read.
Action: Start to think about what kind of book and why. Also, check out your favourite books for ideas. Right now what kind of book would be supportive as people come out of this period. Or if you can write quickly (record your words) what is needed right now?
Don’t spend long agonising over this. Get an idea of who this is for. Do the demographics, that’s always pretty easy. Then ask:-
Action: Draw a matchstick person and answer the questions.
You have the questions you are asking yourself, now we want the ones that others are asking.
This is fairly straightforward, grab some post-it notes and brainstorm 20-30 questions they may be asking you. Put them in some kind order and leave them while you grab a cuppa. Map the questions you think they are asking with the questions you were asking in your journal.
Action: Brainstorm questions and lay them out in an order that makes sense. Then go and ask others what they might be asking.
Do a quick map of your journey and consider how you would map this so that it could become a customer journey. You have the questions, and your story so start there. Your journey may well have been all over the place, a book is a more linear medium and you will need to map things out so that it makes sense.
Action: Create a customer journey map.
What else do you need to add in? This might be some evidence to back up your points.
Action: Access the gaps, and work out where they need to go in the customer journey.
The outline is where you make sense of everything so far. You are looking to create flow and a solid structure for your book. At this stage what is helpful is to write under each chapter heading – this book is about.
Action: Brainstorm an outline, put in subheadings and add in this chapter is about (that is you what stage).
A chapter framework gives as you can imagine your chapter a structure. I ask my clients to extend their what is this chapter about to include:-
You may not need a framework, but it is still good to ask the questions.
Action: Design your chapter framework.
Now you are at the writing stage. Write each chapter, leaving the introduction to the end. Keep each chapter separate until you are ready to upload. Do a test write to test your chapter framework and tweak as needed. Make a writing schedule and stick to it. If you are struggling consider blogging your book. You can also record this and get it transcribed.
Action: Write to the first draft.
Grab your editing plan and start the editing process. Make sure it flows, and there are no mistakes (or as few as possible). I use Grammarly and WORD’s built-in tools, as well as printing it out and proofing it. I will read it silently and aloud to check. I have a process for editing, find yours make it work.
Action: Find your editing process, create an editing plan, put the time aside and edit.
This means that it’s laid out in a pleasant and easy to read way. You have chapter headings and subheadings. Your text is consistent and spaced properly. What you will find is that when you upload it to Kindle Direct Publishing you will see if this has been achieved and can change it during the upload stage.
Action: Check your formatting. Print a page of your formatting out to check spacing, look and feel, flow and margins.
Create a cover design specification and get this off to your designer. I use this person on Fiverr who has created these covers for me.
The blurb is the bit on the back of the book and the description on Amazon. If you when you get a proof book you do not have to wait for your designer, use the over design tools on Kindle. It won’t be as gorgeous but it will be fast.
Action: Work with your cover designer to get a beautiful cover. Write your blurb and remember it’s not an essay and has to fit on the back of your book.
Go to your bookshelf create a new print book, follow the prompts on the screen; they are self-explanatory and upload your manuscript. You can assign an Amazon ISBN number for ease.
If you don’t have an account, create one and make sure you enter your tax and bank details first.
You will need to launch the previewer, and this is where you can see if your layout works. I find I have to keep going back and forth until everything is in the right place and believe me; it’s weird how WORD does things.
Action: Upload your book and have patience while you get it right for KDP.
You will see an option to order a proof book. Choose that and wait for the email that tells you how to order and pay. Sit back and wait for your book to arrive. When it comes back, edit it again and go through the process of getting another proof for your beta readers and then your proofreader.
Action: Order your proof book and go through the editing process again.
This is your final eyes. You have what you call your final manuscript and this is the last step. It should take about 2 weeks and make sure you give them a style sheet of names and terms that are unique to this book. Send them both a printed book and your WORD document.
Action: Book your proofreader/beta readers well in advance and make sure you feel comfortable with their work before going ahead. Stay in touch with them and answer all questions.
Go through the final stages of what’s needed on KDP and publish.
Right now I am noticing that print books are getting to me at a much slower rate. I always get a print book first and read that as a book to help with the editing process and then turn it into a Kindle book.
Action: Always make a Kindle book so that it can be downloaded easily and you can run promotions on it.
101 days of being me is 101 daily reflective prompts which will get you thinking, writing and reflecting.
What can you do next? Get Turn Your Journal Into a Book course from The Soul Writers Academy.
Well hello April and another new month to whet your appetite with journaling prompts, affirmations and setting your intentions.
As I look out of my window I can see that the darkness and rain has given way to the sun. The wet road is drying and the birds are singing. I love to hear them as I am working – always hopeful.
Just recently it has rained almost non stop. Which is wonderful for Mother Earth and while I feel deep appreciation, I’d also welcome some warmth on my bones. It is also a message to remember to hydrate yourself.
I looked back in my diary and one year ago I was away with my mum for Mother’s Day and the year before I had an appointment with my cranial osteopath. That was the year that I discovered who I was and how my body could heal if I gave her the right ingredients.
This year, I wonder what I’ll be recording in my lockdown journal when I head to bed this evening. You have started one – right?
It’s day 18 and we one of the countries hardest hit by the Coronavirus. I can only imagine how people are feeling. My emotions have been up and day and yet I feel so lucky to have the furry ones to keep me entertained and busy. Only this morning Ferdy vomited all over the floor…
April is the fourth month and I learn that it is named after the Greek goddess Aphrodite (Venus – Romans), and that the Latin name is Aprilis or Aperit which means to open. Being open is perfect for our intention setting and creating affirmations as you will see.
Astrologically we have both Aries (fire) and Taurus (earth) signs with birthdays this month. Happy birthday if April is your month. We will be moving from passion to becoming more grounded.
And as for Aphrodite (Venus) – the goddess of love, beauty, pleasure, passion and procreation.
With all of this going on we have plenty of ideas for intentions, affirmations and journaling prompts for April.
Thinking of the OPEN theme, what kind of intentions could you set?
Setting an intention means that you are now OPEN to receiving something. When you think of what you want, know that this intention will help to fuel it. This is where you can start to manifest magic.
You intention could be to remain focused on an element of your business that will inspire and support others right now. It could be that your intention is to win new clients. Or it could be that you want more connection time (online) with friends and family.
Write your intentions in your journal on the page where you are going to write you I am OPEN to affirmations.
Say your intention out loud and send it to the Universe. Remember to practice gratitude and say thanks as the things you most desire turn up.
Gratitude is a vital part of setting intentions. You cannot just want and want, you really need to appreciate all that you have and all that you get.
And don’t forget to take action.
Your turn. Remember to write these in your journal and around you hand mandala on your new month intentions page.
Keep saying your affirmations and record in your journal what magic turns up for you.
Journaling prompts to get you through the month:
Grab a journal on Amazon (there are several that are also available on Kindle)
Join The Journaling Club – where you will get a monthly journaling book (PDF) and exercises to keep you motivated.
And finally remember to appreciate the rain because April showers bring May’s flowers
It’s raining. Again. I’ve lost count of what day of the lockdown it is (where I live it began on March 14th). In my what has now been renamed lockdown journal I am remembering to put the dates. For some reason, I don’t want to, but I know that it is important to remember how I felt and how I processed my emotions during this period.
The rain doesn’t stop our short walk. My dogs are lapping up every moment. They are used to four long walks a day. These walks, along with my journal, keep me sane. Right now I am having a few moments of it’s ok to not be ok.
Once again, journaling is saving my life.
This journal – my lockdown journal – feels more meaningful. I’m recording a momentous time in humanities evolution and an incredible time in my life.
A few days ago I noticed I was clenching my jaw and I swear this is not something I have done in many years. Doing a daily body scan enables you to notice tensions easily and then usually you can move the energy on. Right now I am finding this a tad harder, and that’s ok.
I have allowed the emotions to flow. There’s been a range, which started with anger at being bullied – or at least the person attempted to intimidate me. I decided to let it all flow, to become a witness and to enjoy sorting these pieces of the me jigsaw out.
Then I decided to play the appreciation game and to look at how I could count my blessings. Despite said rain when I was out with my three dogs, I did just that.
We live in a beautiful place with loads of space for them to run and explore. For me, every day is different on our walks. The air temperature, smells, sounds, new plants, the sky, cloud formations and simply life. There is a peace that always transcends me when I am in nature which also excites the pants off me.
I’ve also introduced Terrace Time, where I just stop and look around at the beauty of the world, to feel the energy, to say thank you and to do my morning energy routine. I’ve become quite addicted.
This morning as I stopped to wonder at the glory of Mother Nature, a song crept unbidden into my head. ‘What’s the story morning glory?’ the 1995 Oasis album and song of the same title. And then in a thrice, my mind tumbled backwards in time to that era.
1995 and life was very different. I was back in Wales after living in Reading for a few hectic years, working for an IT company, had a motorbike licence (exciting and scary) and a bike mad boyfriend. We used to head out on what I call ‘holidays from hell.’ (It always rains when you go on motorbike holidays. It does I promise you.) However, these are holidays that I will never forget; cold, wet, miserable weather, soaked leathers; yet full of excitement and mystery wondering where we would end up after a day’s ride.
My mind tripped to ten years later, and I was, heading through France to Spain in my motorhome, where again, I was reminded of so many other crazy holidays. On this journey, I remember being whisked back in time as the names of towns whizzed by. I love how my memory does a great job of delving inwards and resurfacing happy times.
There I was dancing in the streets of Cahors. We had happened upon a festival quite by accident. Impromptu, silly, drunken good-natured fun. From there back in time to Bayonne and a camping holiday when I was in my early 20’s. I think it was the world surfing championships. I had my first go on a surfboard – a never to be repeated event. I lost my bikini in the surf and a restaurant flooded in a deluge of rain as we ate one evening.
My walk became a time travelers convention, except, my feet were now very firmly on the ground, and I was in the country with the three dogateers doing their thing during what is currently the strangest period of my life.
Life is no longer as fast or mad, but life is full of adventure, despite being locked down.
I wonder if you stopped for a moment where your memory will take you?
Naturally, I have no idea when this will be over. However, imagine being able to not only process your emotions and thoughts through this but to be able to look back and remember how it was for you.
Your stories could inspire a generation of people looking for meaning in their lives. Your story could provide hope for someone so that they know that around the corner is a rainbow or a pot of gold. Your story can be happy or sad, born of tragedy or joy, about business or life’s adventures, inspired by revolution or evolution. Or maybe it’s a story that just needs to be told.
The morning is a perfect time to put pen to paper. What if each morning you let your mind wander? Could you capture the story that you want (or need) to tell? What if you captured your story? How might it inspire others? How might it inspire you?
No one knows what is around the corner, there is no crystal ball. You do have a choice about how you move through this period. I choose to write, to express my deepest emotions and to record what is going on for me.
Process your thoughts, feelings and emotions. This is a strange and curious experience for us all. Journaling is a brilliant way to get it out, process and let it go.
Record of your life. You know when someone says, oh you should write a book, well you are now – the book of your life. Just imagine if you are minded to do so, how what you learn about you during this period could strengthen what you have to teach the world.
Learning and growth. Yeah and phew, what an opportunity to listen to your spirit (intuition, inner guide, magical muse) and do the personal growth stuff that your soul has been screaming at you to do.
Clarity and vision. Right now, you need to make sense of your life and the world around you. Writing in your journal will give you clarity, and you can use this to start envisioning how you want to be when this is all over.
Inner peace. I find that once I have splurged it all out, I feel so much more peaceful.
Appreciation. I’ve made gratitude journaling a big part of my life. I write three things, three times a week, along with an affirmation, what did I learn and wouldn’t it be nice. These really do help me to maintain perspective.
Ideas for a book. I love to write and to write books. Journaling is great way to find inspiration for that book you have always promised to write and never did. Want some help with how to do that – check out this course.
If you don’t know how to journal read this blog – How to start journaling when you don’t know how.
Also, take a look at are you ready to spin the wheel of fortune and ask where am I, followed by what do I want to create?
In the evening
In the morning
When I left the horrid husband and started a new life in a new country just six short weeks after discovering his double life, I started 101 days of being me.
Every day I put the camera in my face and talked about how I felt and then later, once in bed, I wrote my heart out. I created these prompts for others to follow and to explore the inner them.
You sign up down there at the bottom of the blog, and these will be delivered to your inbox daily. All you have to do to take action. Read, muse and write.
I’m journaling daily, will you join me?
And finally, we are all in this together, and together we heal and rise. It’s ok to not be ok, and please whatever you do, please do not be alone.
After a weekend of doing not a lot, the desire to get out of bed and resume ‘normal’ life was not strong. I was cosily snuggled with two doglets, despite being pushed to the edge of the bed. I was craving inner peace and space to just forget what was going on in the world.
The first thing I did was reach for my journal and start my usual Monday journaling – the prompt is always – what do I want to create?
What do I want to create as a question is a powerful motivator, and it allows the imagination to roam a while. I find that I start writing rather uninteresting things, then the important things come up and then the ideas.
Today it was about finding calm in both my body and mind. I’d noticed with everything going on how my jaw was tight, my spine aches and how I had the tiniest stirrings of a headache.
As I scribbled, a few things that could restore my inner peace came to mind. One drink even more water, two go and do Terrace Time more often and three, stop and do a short meditation a few times.
Terrace Time is a new activity which started when we were quarantined following a death in a nearby village. We had been told that under no circumstances could anyone, even those with dogs, leave the house.
I headed to the terrace several times with my dogs to try to get them to run around this small area and do their thing. What happened was I was treated to the first glimpses of a new day while I did my energy routine. They spent most of their time with their noses in my foo foo.
What has happened is that Terrace Time has become a habit and such a treat. I’m really enjoying kicking off my day this way.
Back to the journaling.
On Sunday I do a declutter and dump, which was quite funny recalling the days odd moments. Like thinking that there was a helicopter flying over the village and when I looked, it was a tractor disinfecting the area. To be fair, the noise was deafening.
These Sunday evening forays into my imagination are powerful, and I got some great ideas out, which were reflected in my Monday creations.
After journaling, I knew what I needed was a hot, calming shower, and to wash my hair. I needed to tell myself Monday’s here, and it’s time to get back to ‘normal’.
Normal, that is my new normal, which given how I live is not that different to my old normal, except I am unable to walk my dogs as often and as far as I usually do, which is one of my life-saving inner peace strategies outside of journaling. And I can’t meet friends for yummy food by the sea. However, yay for technology and being able to have tea and cake online.
When all was done, in the shower, I remembered my legs. Well, who cares about them? No one can see them. Who cares if they are hairy?
But that’s the point. If you let things go, they will continue to slide. Sitting around eating cake in your PJ’s watching Judge Rinder and Loose Women is not a strategy. Although I do love a bit of Judge Rinder.
What I have noticed is that when my inner peace feels at risk, I start to feel anxious, which is not something I have experienced for a long time.
This morning I made a decision that I must stay with my inner peace. I don’t have to do or be anything else, I simply need to make a choice that my inner peace is important to me.
The life of inner peace, being harmonious and without stress, is the easiest type of existence. Norman Vincent Peale
Inner peace is a state of being not doing. We don’t travel there physically, although I believe we do mentally and in our hearts.
It’s not a thing that we do, more that we practice things, like smiling, kindness, compassion, walking, yoga, meditation, and journaling which helps us to maintain the state of inner peace.
When we stop fretting about the future because let’s face it, we do not have a crystal ball and dwelling in the past, we can find a place of peace. And yes I get that we are living in strange times, but we really cannot predict what will happen next.
Which leads me to say that inner peace is about acceptance of the moment we find ourselves in. Take a moment to appreciate where you are and what you have.
Inner peace brings a level of freedom. Of course, you will feel stressed or anxious about things, but hopefully less so than someone who cannot or has not experienced inner peace.
Now more than ever, we need to remember that searching for inner peace is futile. This practice takes time and a desire to turn away from the outer world and come inside where there is a rich abundance of stillness is waiting for you.
Inner peace is like your well of in-tuition, it sits deep within in you. It can be a natural state of being if you choose to let yourself experience it.
I’ve been on a massive healing journey where I have learned to love me and to enjoy being in my company. It can be hard to express what inner peace means to me other than I know I have it, and you will too.
What I notice about people who seem peaceful is that:
It doesn’t come on a pink unicorn. I did ask, but my request from The Universe was denied. It is as I have said a choice. I do understand that it isn’t always that easy. We have a lifetime of baggage to dump – beliefs, fears, judgements, doubts, anxieties, anger, frustration, denial, resentment and regrets to name but a few things.
Inner peace comes when you make choices about how you want to be and to let go of what does not serve you.
If you can find a way to accept who you are, love you and all of your foibles, you will find that you waste less time worrying about what you cannot control and enjoying more of the present moment.
When you do this, you will awaken to the delight that is inner peace and the realisation that you are worthy of this place of being and everything that this life has to offer.
All you have to remember is that the teacher is in you.
I am reminded once again of the serenity prayer.
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
There are many things that you simply can’t change. The past, for example, is long gone. We cannot undo things that happened and the choices that we have made, but we can change how we feel about them and the lessons learned. We can also make conscious decisions about the things presented to us now. That brings inner peace.
I love affirmations, try this one.
Today I am able to distinguish between what I can control and what I can’t, and I make a conscious decision to experience inner peace
Back to the hairy legs…
Get up and shave your legs. Keep things as normal as possible. Please be at peace with yourself, even if you cannot understand the world right now.
So here I am damp, fully shaved with a head of wet hair that needs taming, wondering ever so slightly – what is normal?
But ha! I have smooth legs.
And finally – What is the one thing that you can do right now that will bring some inner peace to your life?
Come and join The Journaling Club – where you will get a monthly journaling book (PDF) and exercises to keep you motivated. This month is all about simplicity, balance, flow and inner peace.
I confess that when it came to journaling last night I felt a tad stuck. Things were not flowing and the reason was I was not ok.
It’s ok to not be ok, but you wouldn’t want to be stuck in that state for long would you?
We had been confined to the house, we were told for ten days. I had visions of me screaming at the walls to get out and eating cardboard. After the village was disinfected the rules were changed to normal lockdown ones as long as we used a mask and gloves when we went out.
And so I grounded and centred, place a massive crystal between my breasts (at least it stays there) and breathed. As soon as I put pen to paper and scribbled anything, the words came.
And the words flowed, balance in the Daleyverse was restored. This morning I was full of beans, did my energy routine on the terrace with my bemused dogs while fighting to keep their noses out of my private place. I’m not sure they have fully grasped the concept of Terrace Time.
How and where do you like to write? In a crowded café, with hot chocolate and biscuits to dunk, or in a peaceful place with no noise or interruptions?
What about making your space comfortable? What do you need to make yourself a writing den? What about your desk and chair? What about the energy of the space?
If you have read any of my blogs you will know that I am the quiet writing type. And when it comes to journaling it is usually in bed.
Decide where you want to write. Is this in bed, on the sofa or somewhere else? Do you like smells, sounds, silence or something else? TV or radio on in the background? What about people? I find it a pain to be interrupted when I am writing, do you?
When we are grounded, centered, in alignment, working from our heart and listening to the whispers of our soul, the Universe flows to us and through us. That’s when your writing will flow and you can create what you need.
Imagine that you have roots growing from your feet into Mother Earth, breathe that energy in, up into your heart and out through your head. Send it down into Mother Earth, breath the energy up again. Do this a few times.
Ha! I can hear you say, that’s easy for you. Really? I do have days when I look at my journal and can’t be arsed. These are the days that I need it most. I ground and then start writing rubbish and as that flows and I am engaged what I need to write comes flowing out.
So, yes, just write. Trust me I’m a coach and cake lover.
When I am stuck for putting structure around something, I simply create a mind map. A mind map is a collection of thoughts around a central idea. It is quick and simple and serves to ignite my imagination. I also use it for creating plans and developing ideas.
This is very simple and is similar to the mind mapping idea, except the word is a word for today.
Write a word in the middle of the page and then allow five other words to come and on each branch five and five more until you run out.
Try this: Put SMILE into a mind map and see what words come up for you.
Then you can write about what comes up for you.
Of course, things are so much easier if someone asks us questions. If you struggle with the prompts in each of the sections, scribble them out and try one of these:
Join The Journaling Club – where you will get a monthly journaling book (PDF) and exercises to keep you motivated.
Nature is often something that we can take for granted. It’s just there. The trees and flowers simply exist.
But that’s not true. Nature is an incredible ally, here supporting our lives and breathing out love in every moment.
When I am out walking, I’m often caught in surprise by a smell or a tiny flower pushing it’s way up through the rocks.
I remember one day stopping because of the overpowering smell of lavender, when I looked I was in a circle of it. It was quite magical. The smells always get me, perhaps it will be rosemary that seems to grow everywhere, fennel or thyme. Or there is that dank smell of wet earth after the rain. Sometimes I swear I can smell ginger biscuits cooking, but that is impossible.
I adore being in nature. Most days I walk my dogs at least three times and often four. It’s not only for them, but I also get such peace from being outside. Being in nature helps me to clear my mind and it allows whatever ideas and inspiration need to come to me.
I’ll stop to talk with the trees, placing my hand on their strong bodies so that I hear their great wisdom. Or to simply just rest my back against the bark to feel the energy connect and flow through me.
Have you ever looked at a tree? I am sure you have. They are fascinating.
Just this morning I noticed that the figs and nispero are starting to bud and the poppies are dying away. Just a few weeks ago there was a sea of poppies as far as the eye could see.
The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn. Ralph Waldo Emerson
Trees stand tall because of their healthy root system and grow towards the sky, where it has space to breathe. The roots on a tree bring nutrients and water to feed and nourish it. Which, in turn, helps it to grow. By creating strong roots, the tree has a robust foundation to help it withstand the storms of life.
Under the roots of all trees is Mother Nature which extends downwards to the centre of the Earth and for us the centre of our Universe. This is the place of beginnings. It is where you begin your journey to discovering you, creating strong roots and foundations to carry you through life.
When your roots are strong, you can anchor yourself, and with the right nourishment reach towards the heavens to be anything you want.
Most people instinctively head outside when their minds and souls need quieting. Being with the dogs, if you have any is the perfect way to find joy in the moment.
For you it could be:
Perhaps our urge to merge with nature when feeling out of sorts has something to do with our internal “fight or flight” programming. “Flight” sends us looking for an escape route.
In nature, we are free. The return to freedom as we become one with the natural world makes a soothing balm for our vexed souls. It works for me every time.
Think about what utter delight nature brings to the senses.
There is a sense of homecoming, of finding our rightful place in the world again, when we connect with nature and engage all of our senses. In nature, we are healed. In nature, we can find joy. In nature, we are at one with ourselves.
No matter what spot on the map you call home, or even if there’s a nip in the air, you can always escape to the great outdoors when you’re in need of peaceful moments.
Even in the most bustling town or city, there will be a beautiful park to take a walk and hopefully a wonderful café to rest your bones in and grab a delicious cuppa as you witness the world.
For me, a bit of heaven lives in nature, and this calls to our souls to aid the replenishing process.
Today think of the gratitude you feel for what Mother Nature provides. And get out there (if you can) and enjoy it.
There will be times when you can’t get out, but you can bring nature in. I’m not a fan of uproot plants because in a short space of time they will soon be dead. Rather look at other ways.
Whether you can get out or have to stay in, nature can be with you all of the time. So make time for her abundance.
Grab your journal take just 9 minutes to write 9 things that you are grateful for which bring you peace in Mother Nature
When you get your journal out bring these to mind and write about what you feel grateful for:
Grab a journal on Amazon
This gluten free banana bread is super easy to make and can be amended to suit your diet. So if you are vegan, swap the eggs for soaked linseeds, chia or psyllium husks.
Today when I made this banana bread, I used up lots of left over flours. So I used a mix of rice, quinoa and soya flour.
1 egg = 1 tablespoon of flax seeds or chia + 3 tablespoons water
1 egg = 3 tablespoons nut butter
1 egg = 1 teaspoon psyllium seed husk + 1/4 cup water (let it stand for 5 minutes; use = binding and moisture)
I will often add . Another yummy ingredient is papaya or try adding raw chocolate and raw grated beetroot.
Sometimes when you come to make your banana bread it doesn’t have a dropping consistency. All you need to do is to add something like plant-based milk, milk or water. The key here is to gently add in something until it looks right.
Basically, add in other stuff that you fancy.