It can be uplifting and a source of hope to have a dream vacation in mind. Whether is dreaming of the beach, the mountains, new places, or new experiences keeping these things in mind can add excitement to our lives. Todays prompt is all about reflecting on what a dream vacation looks like for you!
What is your dream vacation? What is it about this type of vacation that you enjoy?
Do you plan to go on this vacation? How can you work towards it?
If you went on this dream vacation what activities would you look forward to most?
Purpose can seem so illusive and difficult to grasp. Yet having a sense of purpose allows us to live life more fully and increases our quality of life. When we feel we have purpose we can be more intentional to live out our purpose with our thoughts, words, and actions. Today’s journal prompt is all about reflecting on what purpose means to you!
To reflect on our purpose we will first answer questions about what is important to us and then reflect on what these answers mean for our purpose.
Reflections on our passions:
What do you enjoy doing most throughout the week?
What skills or talents do you use in your work or hobbies?
What do you do that contributes towards your community?
What are you passionate about?
What is something that people often come to you and ask you for help with?
Is there a pattern or theme in the answers you wrote about your passions?How do these patterns relate to your purpose?
Now take a moment to write about what purpose means to you.
Based on all that you have written and reflected on so far write out what you believe your purpose to be. How is this purpose reflected in you passions?
I hope you enjoyed this time or reflection! I hope this year is filled with passion and purpose for us!
The beginning of a new year is a great time to reflect! It’s an opportunity to reflect on the year that has past and to make plans for the new year to come. During this journal prompt we will do both of these things! This is going to be a great year!!
First we will reflect on our experiences in 2022. Reflection is a time to remember, ponder, and evaluate our experiences. Not all the things that we experienced over the last year were easy or enjoyable. There may have been more lessons or hard times over the last year then moments of laughter and joy. The purpose of this prompt isn’t to judge your experiences, but to simply reflect on how these experiences can help us create the best year in 2023. Consider these questions to help reflect on 2022:
What brought you the most joy in 2022?
What are three lessons from 2022 that you want to bring into the new year?
What goals did you work on during 2022?
Think back to how 2022 started for you and where you were in life…where are you in life now in comparison?
Now that we have reflected on 2022, let’s look ahead to our plans, goals, and hopes for 2023.
What are your top 3 goals that you want to work on in 2023?
What habits are you hoping to break or begin in 2023?
What 2 things are you looking forward to most this year?
Where do you want to be in life a year from now? What action steps can you take this year to accomplish this?
I hope you enjoyed this time of reflection! This is going to be a great year! We got this!
We start the year thinking and planning goals we want to accomplish, but as the year goes on sometimes our motivation and inspiration fades. It can be so hard to keep working on our goals. Today’s journal prompt is all about writing out affirmations that can help keep our inspiration going! Affirmations are helpful because … Continue reading “Journal Prompt: Goal Affirmations”
Starting to Create Again Have you ever gone through seasons where you felt uninspired and unmotivated to create? I’ve been going through that lately! It’s been driving me crazy!! I love to create and craft! I truly believe getting creative is so important for our self-care! But sometimes finding the energy to do it can … Continue reading “Creative Life: Where To Start”
It can be uplifting and a source of hope to have a dream vacation in mind. Whether is dreaming of the beach, the mountains, new places, or new experiences keeping these things in mind can add excitement to our lives. Todays prompt is all about reflecting on what a dream vacation looks like for you! … Continue reading “Journal Prompt: Dream Vacation”
Aging is a topic that I am very familiar with because most of my social work career has been spent working with seniors. Because of that this article caught my attention and am excited to share with you what I learned from it. The article is named ‘New study finds 6 ways to slow memory … Continue reading “Factors that Contribute to Aging Well”
This is my favorite type of journal prompt! It is simply a check in to see how life is going, what we are learning, what’s happening, and how we are feeling. This prompt is a series of questions and statements to get you thinking about your life in this current season. Journal Prompt Take a … Continue reading “Journal Prompt: Life Lately”
I have seen this idea on Facebook and several other websites! All you do is use six words to tell a story. An example might be “Rabbit quickly hopped, pellets went flying.” It’s all about telling a story or a scene with a few words.
Tell a six word story about your current season of life, a feeling you experienced recently, or a fun experience you had recently.
Journaling letters can be a great way to reflect on positive relationships or to find closure. Todays letter is to a mentor in your life.
This prompt is all about reflecting on a mentor in your life. Here is a list of possible things to mention in your letter. The purpose of this letter isn’t necessarily to send to the person, but simply a tool of reflection in your journal.
When was this mentor in your life and what stage of life were you in?
Why was this relationship significant?
How did this mentor impact you and what did they teach you?
Fall is a great time for reflection. There is so much that we learn from nature about change, letting go, and growth. The prompt today is about thinking about how all of these lessons relate to us in our current season of life.
Fall can teach us so much about life and the seasons. How do these lessons relate to your life?
Fall teaches us that letting go can be beautiful and essential for new growth. How has letting go been apart of this season in your life?
Fall teaches us that change can be full of beauty. What beauty have you seen from change in your life during this season?
Safety relates to our physical and emotional wellbeing. It is being protected against dangers and comfortable to live without risk of harm. There are three levels of safety including internal, micro, and macro.
Internal safety is when we feel comfortable, secure, and protected within ourselves. This could include in our emotions, thoughts, or simply within our physical body. We could feel unsafe internally due to abuse, sexual assault, struggling with unhealthy thoughts, or overwhelmed by our emotions or stress. There has been times when I am in an emotional spiral and having dark thoughts and feel unsafe within myself. What does it look like to feel safe internally? This could be feeling balanced and not overtaken by emotions or past traumas, or it could be feeling comfortable to be yourself, to feel whatever feelings you feel, and be in your body with feelings of acceptance and trusting yourself.
Micro safety is being safe within our immediate relationships, living situation, our daily habits, work, and social interactions. There could be a number of reasons why peopl feel unsafe in these areas. A small example from my life is from the last apartment I lived in. I loved the apartment at first, but the longer I lived there the more I felt uncomfortable with my neighbors because of their lifestyle, their arguments, and unsettling noises. I was on edge all of the time and even started wearing ear plugs or headphones 24/7. I would get frustrated with myself because people arguing and yelling is normal for a lot of family systems, but it was so triggering for me that I just wanted to run away. I laughed with my grandma about this once because even though I did not know these people and the argument had nothing to do with me whenever I would hear them arguing I was definitely going to be falling apart before the couple who was actually arguing. Because I felt unsafe emotionally within my home it impacted other areas of my life too and even my physical wellbeing because I had such a hard time sleeping and I was not able to enjoy my space. It is so interesting to compare that situation to my current living situation. I feel comfortable and my neighbors are very nice. Because I feel emotionally and physically safe I have found that I am crafting more, hanging out at home more, dancing and singing around the house, even gave my neighbors gifts for Christmas, and I got a pet rabbit. Feeling safe in my immediate context has been a game changer.
Macro safety is when we feel safe within our community and in society. Factors that could contribute towards not feeling safe include living in communities with violence or not feeling accepted in society because of racism, classism, agism, or any other “ism” that puts people at a disadvantage. This would also apply to groups that face stigma due to having physical or mental illness. Not feeling accepted, wanted, or valued in society can have a huge impact on whether or not a person or even group of people feels safe. I saw someone post on social media recently that they are tired of this “woke crap.” This is how the dictionary defines woke as an informal adjective, “alert to injustice and discrimination in society, especially racism.” I just want to note that even if you are not in a group or space where you feel unsafe within your community or society, having empathy for others is being willing to consider someone else’s perspective and situation and how that might impact them, even if it is not your particular experience.
Safety & the Brain
Our brain, specifically our amygdala, is constantly scanning for signs of danger. It is sometimes referred to as the smoke detector of the brain. The amygdala can be triggered by a danger of a physical or emotional nature. There could be times where the amygdala communicates with your body that it is in danger in times when you are actually safe, due to being triggered by something around you, whether that be a smell, tone, appearance, or sound that reminds the brain of a past danger.
Our nervous system has two different responses being sympathetic and parasympathetic. Sympathetic just means our nervous system is activated by danger or stress. Whereas parasympathetic is when we experience calm and relaxation. It is incredible how both states of impacts our whole system. This is due to the vagal nerve that runs through our body, as well as hormones that are released during times of stress and danger (Dana, 2020). You can see this demonstrated in the image below.
How Safety Impacts Us
The autonomic nervous system ladder is a concept from Polyvagal theory (Dana, 2020). Author Deb Dana, has written several books that discusses this well and I would recommend these if you want to dive into this concept deeper: The links below are my referral links for Amazon:
When we feel safe we are able to be our best selves, be engaged, connect with others, and build resilience. Like displayed on the ladder as our safety decreases, we disengage and go into one of three survival mode of flight, fight, or freeze. Safety is essential to thriving (Dana, 2020).
Evaluating Your Feeling of Safety
Here are some reflective questions to journal or think about to consider safety and how it is impacting you:
How can you increase your feelings of safety?
Think of a time when you felt safe and secure within yourself. What was that like and how did it impact you? How did you feel or what kind of thoughts were you having? Were you in a certain situation or atmosphere that contributed towards feelings of safety?
Imagine what it would be like to feel safe internally. What kind of circumstance would you be in or what kind of feelings or thoughts would you be having?
How has safety impacting your thriving or resilience?
Where do you feel you are on the autonomic ladder?
You are worth protecting and are a valuable person who should be kept safe internally, in relationships, at work, in the community, and in society. If you are in crisis or in danger here are some numbers you could call for 24/7 support:
Emergency Services: 911
Crisis Text Line: 741741
National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services Administration Hotline: 1-800-662-HELP
Dana, D. (2020). Befriending Your Nervous System. Speech. Audible.
Working, whether paid or volunteer, takes up a large part of our life and time. I wanted to write a post about resumes, but then I thought it would be good to first write about how to know what kind of jobs or opportunities we are looking for. There are times that we overthink what we are wanting to do for work and how to spend our time. I fall prey to this too often and sometimes it leaves me feeling stuck and not taking any action at all. We are all gifted and have something to offer in the workplace!
How do we figure out where we want to work or the kind of work we want to do? I think there is a variety or ways to make these types of decisions. The worksheet that I have below is a reflective tool to consider your strengths, passions, hopes, desired job, work experience, and steps you would take to get to the job or opportunity you are looking for. How can you use your passions, skills, and talents to benefit the community, do what you love or enjoy, and live in your purpose? I know for me personally my faith is really important to me and something I consider is how can I use my career, my gifts, and skills to honor the Lord, be generous, enjoy the life I’ve been given, and serve the community. For me this is what it looks like to walk in my purpose. What does it look like for you? What steps can you take to get to where you want to be?