Tag: diary

Stay On Course By Documenting Your Intentions And Action

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As I was reading this quote by Wilcox, I had a sudden flashback. I remembered perching on the end of my tiny bed in the dormitory back in boarding school. I was holding a small brown hardcover journal. My very first journal, which was a gift from my mum. From shortly after I could write down a meaningful sentence by myself, my mum had always encouraged me and brothers and sisters to write down what we were thinking about. ‘Whatever it is you would like to get in life, big or small, just write it down. Do it every day and then just see what happens’ she would say.

At that time, I didn’t know she was helping a key tool for life take root in my heart. It felt strange and difficult to pour what felt like my soul out onto a clean blank page. It was hard to start and I felt very vulnerable, but also, at the same time, in some way invincible. In retrospect, it was that feeling of vulnerability that allowed me to develop a sense of self-awareness and to pay attention to my thoughts and actions.

For years we all had to write weekly letters to our mother from our respective schools. It wasn’t a problem for any of us, though our friends often struggled to find something to say. Mum would study each letter carefully before filing them safely away. Over the period of years, those missives slowly gathered in the drawer next to her bed. In time, of course, we all finished school, went to college, and then technology took over from letter writing. But, even after she moved onto computers and email, my mum still encouraged us to write out our goals and intentions,continuing to say, ‘You know what, write it down and see what happens‘. I thought she just kept these letters for a souvenir but there was more to it.

When our eldest brother, Mike, got married, he had a big wedding with relatives from both sides there to join in on his big day. As usual, the groom’s mother was asked to say something and part way through her speech, she asked the Master of Ceremonies to read out from a piece of paper she had picked out of her purse. It was one of the letters that Mike had sent her from College maybe five years before the wedding. He was really embarrassed to hear the letter read out but everyone was amazed at what the letter said.

Mike had told our mother that he was going to make her proud. The letter said that he would buy a nice car, build his own house and marry a wonderful girl in the next five years and mum chose to have this letter read out to demonstrate what the power of thoughts written out, then acted on, could do.

Mike had done just that. He had set three goals, written them out and pursued them, to achieve all three, as well as his College degree in the five years he set himself and of course, making his mother most proud, as he had promised. While I eventually stopped writing to my mum, (though I emailed and called her) I never stopped following that advice to ‘write it down and see what happens’. On my bedside cabinet or any flat surface in my bedroom, you can always find a journal or even a scrap of paper with something scribbled on it. Some are reminders or quotes I want to remember from books I am reading, there will also be to-do lists, and random thoughts that arrived just as I was settling down to sleep but others are based on my mother’s advice to write down my goals, which these days is known as journaling.

Journaling is like talking to yourself, only much more beneficial because you write down what you want, not endless loops of conversations with yourself, though you can do that too, if you need to. With writing in a journal, not only are going to think about it, but you’re also going to say it to yourself as well as write it. By doing this, I found out that writing out your intentions helps you focus on what’s important to you. When you just tell yourself how you’re “going to do well”, your subconscious may very well try to divert you away from working towards your goals, even though your intentions may be the very best.  But when you have all your plans documented in your journal, you get the overall view of where you are now, where you’re going , and your final destination. Susan Sontag, an American writer, explained her experiences with journaling by saying that she “created herself”https://www.coloringdiary.com/.

I can just totally relate to this. All the words I’ve written down about my life, goals, and dreams, whether in ink in journals or letters to my mother or from clicking the keys on my computer have helped create the person I am today.

Checking off some tick boxes on my to do list is one of my small daily pleasures at the end of the day. It makes me feel like I have progressed, no matter how little. Each box represents a problem solved, even a small one and ticking it off makes me feel fulfilled, happy and sometimes, dare I say, it, even euphoric and empowered to tackle any other problems that may lie on that list. Writing down emotions you feel at various times is very therapeutic and can be helpful in managing mental and physical health. You can use this to track your symptoms or create a separate  tracker within your journal to check on what triggers any anxiety, stress, anger or other emotion you find difficult to manage or what you need to eat or do to keep your health in check. You can also track any medical and dental checkups or other health appointments.

Writing things down is still important and the very act of putting pen to paper can be helpful in personalizing your experiences and the goals you want to achieve but with more responsibilities eating away at my personal time, I now have less time available to spend writing out everything that happens in my life, as I used to. With new technology, I can still record  ideas and important stuff while still on the go. Currently, there appear to be a thousand or more apps that can help people track their health, moods, finances, meetings and so on, so you don’t have to spend the time writing it all down and then indexing it if necessary.  Useful mobile apps will help you stay on course with daily living because you can set reminders if necessary.

Journaling is having somewhere to put all your intentions, thoughts, ambitions, and actions to help you stay focused on what you want to achieve.

Write it down. Do it every day and then just see what happens.

 

 

Why Use A Coloring Diary

Why Use A Diary At All

https://www.coloringdiary.com/Diaries have been described as a personal record of events or a personal journal. Noah Blake wrote about living on an American farm in the early 1800s. in the “Diary of an early American Boy“. And “The Country Diary Of An Edwardian Lady” recorded the English flowers and animals in the countryside around the author (Edith Holden), while “The Diary of Samuel Pepys” was written in shorthand, and recorded his daily life as well as events in 17th Century England, including The Great Plague and The Great Fire Of London. Anne Frank wrote “The Diary Of A Young Girl” in The Netherlands, while hiding from the Nazis during WWII. She died in a concentration camp at the age of 15 years, not knowing her diary would become probably the most famous in the world. Many current political figures keep diaries of events and conversations while they are in power, anticipating publication after they have left office, where they will be able to “tell all”. And of course, many novelists write fiction books in the form of a diary.

Yet these days, diaries are often more likely to be used to record upcoming appointments to be kept, business, dental, doctor’s etc, to remind you of what is ahead, so you do not double-book yourself, rather than store details of what has taken place. They are also often pocket sized for easy storage in a pocket or bag, so there is less space for recording interesting details of the day or national events.

The personal planners and organisers – those large diaries, with aims and objectives manuals included for businesses and accounting sections for recording expenses – have mostly been replaced with electronic versions available on smartphones. But that is not to say that diaries are no longer needed. They seem to take two forms these days, the pocket diaries with appointments, now often electronic; and journals which their owners lovingly complete with drawings, motivation charts, exercise records, artistic representations of their aims, objectives and missions and lists for everything from glasses of water drunk daily to vision journals for remodelling houses to holiday packing lists and Christmas preparations. These journals are definitely kept manual and may have a separate set of coloring pens for creating flourishes, tables and icons but they are not necessarily kept in date order. They may be organised by subject or season or by their author’s objectives or whims and the author may well go back to certain pages time and again, to record new thoughts or objectives reached.

Coloring Book With Diary

For those who are not artistic or who do not have the time to create their own drawings and flourishes, it’s possible to combine these into a coloring diary. This includes a coloring page plus a weekly reminder list on the other side, to allow appointments to be recorded. The coloring page encourages relaxation and improves focus, while waiting or travelling and the weekly reminder page can be used for appointments or to create little doodles or cartoons. The coloring diary is a smallish book that fits in a pocket or bag. It can help pass the time, encourage focus or allay anxiety and worry by providing a complex picture for coloring.

Coloring Diary Journal

This would be a larger book for coloring, with pages for notes and lists, rather than appointments.

 

https://www.coloringdiary.com/

Why Coloring Mindfully is Magnificent for Mental Health

Disclaimer – this article does not offer advice on any health or mental health related issue.
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https://www.coloringdiary.com/Mindfulness is an important concept that is integral to many modern approaches to mental health. Conventional therapies for treating depression and anxiety, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, extensively use the concept of mindfulness. Many psychiatrists and psychologists believe that the act of being in the moment, that is, being in the here and now, which is what being mindful is all about, is highly beneficial for mental health.

What Is Mindful Coloring

New research suggests coloring is one of the most effective ways to incorporate mindfulness into treatment plans for disorders such as OCD. It has been found that those who create something, whether a drawing, a painting, music or any other form of expressive art, are often extremely focused and stay in the present moment while creating – that is, mindful. Coloring enables anyone, not just those with colorful minds, to experience artistic creation, even if they cannot draw, paint or compose. Mindful coloring is staying in the present moment and focusing on, or paying attention to the colors being used, the areas that are being colored and how you feel.

The Synergy of Mindfulness and Coloring

The act of coloring is a gentle yet active task that forces an individual to concentrate, thereby causing them to focus on the present moment. Many believe that coloring is indicative of the same therapeutic effects artists experience when painting, sculpting, or even composing music. Evidence suggests that tasks of self-expression that require actively concentrating in the present moment have positive impacts on mental health.

Coloring is one of the easiest and most accessible forms of active self-expression, making it a great candidate for treatments involving mindfulness. Many mental health professionals incorporate coloring books into their treatments with tremendous results. Patients ranging from those suffering from panic attacks, OCD, and even post-traumatic stress disorder have experienced positive results from coloring. Many industry experts believe that the mindfulness gained from coloring allows people with mental health conditions to relax and recover dynamically. This, however, should not be confused with art therapy, in which a therapist helps a client to use art as part of a recovery program.

How to Practice Mindful Coloring

Making the most of mindful coloring involves using helpful mindfulness strategies that keep the focus on the present moment. By staying in the moment, an amplification of the healing and calming effects of coloring occurs. For some people, being mindful of the emotion they are feeling at that very moment allows them to choose a color to use in the design or picture they are coloring.

Vocalizing calming mantras throughout the coloring process is very helpful in maintaining constant mindfulness, especially for those that have conditions like OCD that make it difficult to concentrate. Some people find that simply saying the various thoughts that come into their head out loud as they draw or color helps keep themselves mindful of the present moment.

Another useful tactic for effective coloring is refraining from judgment. Many people with mental health conditions are immensely self-critical, which causes negative thoughts and worsening symptoms. Allowing self-expression through coloring without any judgments is often a very healing and liberating experience for many individuals.

Similarly, refraining from placing any expectations about the coloring session is also key to maintaining mindfulness. Individuals with conditions such as anxiety might set expectations regarding how much coloring they should complete, which can worsen their symptoms. The task of coloring shouldn’t involve any expectations regarding how many pages or sections should be completed. The task should serve as a useful exercise for many people that have difficulties with perfectionism and anxieties related to unrealistic expectations.

If you want to practice mindful coloring in order to  build a constructive habit, why not create your own mindfulness coloring planner, in which you set yourself a number of coloring tasks to undertake  mindfully over a period of time.

https://www.coloringdiary.com/

 

How to Get Started with Coloring Mindfully

Coloring books made explicitly to practice mindfulness are currently abundant. These books are geared towards adults rather than children, making them a much more suitable choice for those looking to get better at staying in the moment. Using these books, many people achieve significant improvements in many issues ranging from insomnia to anxiety.