Hey lovely person!
Welcome to the very first day of this 21 day self care challenge, and I’m delighted both that you have decided to increase your self care, and that you’re here.
The first thing you’re going to do is look at one of the simplest and most effective activities you can do to care for yourself – journaling.
Have you ever noticed that running commentary in your head?
You know, the one that keeps you awake at night exploring ‘what if’s’ and ‘why did I’s?’ and ‘I can’t believe I said’s’?
It’s maddening – Especially that 3am ‘wide awake and can’t get back to sleep’ one that replays every little thing you ever did wrong, or every little thing you said that you regret, or reminds you of every niggle and worry about the future. Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was a way of just shutting the damn thing up?
Journaling is the way – Journaling takes all the confusion from your head and gets it down on paper. That fog of words and confusion that’s so exhausting yet robs you of sleep can be tamed and quietened by the simple act of writing, helping you to get a good nights sleep.
Firstly, it means you no longer have to hold on to it yourself. It’s written down, so you can delete it from your mind, like clearing your cache or deleting cookies: it frees up space. Imagine how brilliant THAT would feel! Like taking off a heavy backpack!
Also, there’s something about finding the right word to exactly describe the feeling that’s fogging up your thoughts that really brings you clarity – ‘no, it wasn’t irritation I felt, it was exasperation’. See – slight difference, but big change in meaning.
And once you understand more about how you’re feeling, you can go about making changes.
Writing is the perfect release valve for the stresses of everyday life. It’s a place to process events safely, to acknowledge accomplishments and reduce stress, and the therapeutic effects of journaling are widely documented.
By increasing your self knowledge you learn about what you want, like, need and desire, making it more likely that you’ll achieve these.
It also provides a great place to safely express frustration or anger, and a damn good vent and rant can really help to recognize what the real problem is and decide if and how you want to tackle it.
So, todays self care task is to set up a journal, and your first entry will be ‘how does it feel to be embarking on this self care journey’.
You’ll use this journal throughout this challenge as a way of learning about yourself – what you enjoyed, found difficult, didn’t like, found surprising, so don’t skip this step.
Although I recommend using a paper journal, if you live with others and are worried about confidentiality, you may prefer something online that you can password protect.
I recommend Evernote: It’s a free app, and syncs between all devices so you can use anywhere, but what I like most is the organisational side of it: It’s set up as notepads, so perfect to use as a diary and you can add photos, blogs, videos – pretty much anything!
So jump in, get started and reap the benefits!
Don’t be fooled by it’s apparent simplicity, journaling is an incredibly powerful tool.
Stay tuned for Day 2.
Wherever you are in the world, have a lovely day ❤