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I'm okay, really...
On self awareness and why you should journal right now.
After hitting send on my last post, I had several concerned readers reach out.
They were worried about my mental health after I opened up about my experience with depression.
The post was “vulnerable” and publishing it was incredibly therapeutic for me.
Yet, I just
deleted edited the post.
It’s not my intention to turn these letters into some sort of public symposium for the processing of Alon’s emotions — I can do that in private, and that’s what today’s letter will be about.
So, if you are one of the 132 people who received the original post – congrats – we are now a bit more intimate, and you know about the darkness, and deep insecurities that drive me forward every day ;)
With that out of the way, let’s talk about self awareness - the alignment of your thoughts, emotions, and actions.
With high levels of self awareness - you’re more in tune with your values, passions, and inspirations - this governs your daily decisions and drives you forward each day.
You know who you are, how you’re wired, what motivates you, what is good for you (and what isn’t), and what you want…
This shows up as more solid relationships, better decisions, more success, and a more fulfilling life altogether.
Writing down your thoughts is one way to elevate your level of self awareness - and reduce your anxiety, depression, and general feelings of uncertainty in the process.
Meditation helps too, and so does therapy – but I have mixed feelings about those things – that’s for another post.
Today we’ll talk about journaling….
Since 2010, I’ve been regularly keeping a very detailed and intimate log of my life – not only the external events and day to day, but my hopes, fears, dreams, and the innermost emotional states behind them.
Through the many seasons and cycles of life - I’ve witnessed the seeds of desire transform themselves into realities - often in surprising and non-linear ways.
It’s been one of the most impactful activities I’ve adopted and I can credit it with much of my success in life – it’s truly the lowest effort and highest reward “life hack”.
The most important relationship in life is the one you have with yourself, and regularly journaling will help you maintain an ongoing dialogue, and cultivate and honor that relationship.
It will expose your thought patterns, and through repetition, it will make it apparently clear what truly matters to you in life (and why).
And in addition to all of the emotional benefits, regularly journaling will help you improve the skill of writing.
Clear writing is clear thinking – and the ability to transmit your ideas clearly and persuasively is a superpower, If I do say so myself.
And now that you’re [hopefully] sold on the short list of the benefits, here’s the seven step secret formula to developing your journaling practice:
Just fucking write.
Getting started is easy and you can receive the benefits of journaling in just a few minutes per day.
Morning pages is a powerful way to start the day — I rank it third, behind sunshine, and movement.
And then I’d recommend writing whenever you feel like it – or if you require structure, at the end of each day - stripped of distraction, in a relaxed state, and with a cup of herbal tea - this will also help you sleep better.
You can reflect on your day, set your intentions for the next, document the things that made you feel good (and the things that didn’t), what went right/wrong, express gratitude and document any special moments from the day —— or get started with one of these prompts.
I like to alternate between a digital journal (I use DayOne), and a physical, pen to paper journal.
Writing by hand is superior for many reasons, but the digital journals are more convenient (and better for keeping records).
Till next time’
P.S. One of the greatest indicators of growth is to look back at a previous version of yourself (by reading an old journal entry) and immediately wondering – WTF was I thinking.
I’m starting to feel that way about things I published just a few days ago – I suppose this is a good sign.