It seems like everyone around us wants something from us these days, doesn’t it? Friends, family, work, that really cute golden retriever by the door – they all want our time and energy. In the moment, it can feel like we need to say ‘yes’ to all of it and it will ‘figure itself out’ and by the end of the day, we are all out of energy and we haven’t managed to do any of the things on our own ‘to do’ lists. Ever feel this way?
What if I told you that, in 5 minutes a day, you could get clear on what matters to you to get done in the day?
Here is my go to starter prompt to build a journaling habit.
A = ABSTAIN: What is in your life that is no longer serving you that you want to hold off of today? Maybe it’s negative self talk? Maybe it’s that third glass of wine? Maybe it’s saying yes to ANOTHER committee of the PTA? Whatever you feel beholden/shackled to, this is your place to let it go. Remember: everything you say ‘yes’ to is a ‘no’ to another way you could spend that time and energy.
E = EXERCISE: How are you going to move your body today? You don’t have to be training for a marathon. Maybe this is just taking the furthest parking spot at the office or grocery store.
I = YOU: Self-care. What are you going to do to take care of YOU today? After all, you are the only one really responsible for you and the way your one wild and precious life turns out.
O = OTHERS: One of the best ways to procure joy is to be of service to others – this is why we can be so susceptible to people-pleasing. It feels good. This is your space to be intentional about how you want to spend your service energy.
U = UNEXPRESSED EMOTIONS: If it doesn’t come to you immediately, this one is best served with about three deep cleansing breaths. While breathing, take note of any feelings of tightness or discomfort in your body. You don’t necessarily have to give them an ‘emotional’ name. Jot down any curious feelings or anything you know you are ‘hiding’ or keeping from others (or yourself.) Let it out.
Y = YAY! GRATITUDE: The human brain is incapable of feeling anger and gratitude at the same time. Now that you acknowledged your anger or discomfort (because it deserves to be known, too) make a list of your blessings here and let your brain bathe in the happiness hormones that come with gratitude. We all have something to be grateful for – whether it is clean water, a hot shower, crying babies (their lungs work!) or dirty dishes (you were able to feed your family!)
Sample Prompt: *
A: Negative self-talk
E: Use the bathroom on the other side of the building.
I: Writing in this journal
O: Writing in this journal 😉
Y: I can read AND write!