Starting a Journaling Practice: Common Blocks and Solutions

Here are some common blocks and solutions for those who may struggle getting started with a journaling practice.

  1. Lack of time: One of the most common blocks to starting a journaling practice is feeling like there’s not enough time in the day to sit down and write. Many people feel like they are too busy with work, family, or other commitments to make time for journaling.

Solution: start small and be realistic about how much time you can commit to journaling each day. Even just five minutes a day can be enough to establish a regular journaling practice. Schedule journaling time into your day, perhaps right after waking up or before bed.

  1. Fear of judgment: Some people are hesitant to start journaling because they fear that what they write will be judged by others, or even by themselves. They worry that their writing won’t be good enough or that they will reveal something embarrassing or shameful.

Solution: remember that journaling is a personal practice, and that no one else needs to read what you write. Write without judgment or self-criticism, and focus on the process of writing rather than the end result.

  1. Lack of inspiration: Some people struggle to come up with ideas for what to write about in their journals. They may feel like they don’t have anything interesting or important to say.

Solution: Start with simple prompts, such as writing about your day or reflecting on a recent event. Journaling doesn’t have to be profound or life-changing; it can simply be a way to document and process your thoughts and feelings.

  1. Perfectionism: Some people may struggle with perfectionism, feeling like they need to write perfectly and eloquently in their journal. They may feel like their writing needs to be polished and professional.

Solution: let go of perfectionism and focus on simply getting your thoughts down on paper. Remember journaling is a personal practice, and that there is no “right” or “wrong” way to do it.

  1. Lack of motivation: Some people may struggle with motivation to continue journaling over time. They may start out strong but then lose interest or momentum.

Solution: set goals for theyour journaling practice, such as writing for a certain amount of time each day or completing a certain number of entries per week. Celebrate small successes along the way, such as completing a week of consistent journaling. Find ways to make journaling more enjoyable and meaningful, such as incorporating creative elements like drawing or collage.

The Power of Breathing

“When you breathe, you inspire.  When you do not breathe, you expire.” – Quote from an 11-year-old’s science exam

John Grinder, co-creator of NLP talks about the link between respiration, physiology, internal state and high performance.  He calls this ‘the chain of excellence’.

First; when you are experiencing a powerful, positive state, allow yourself to become aware of your breathing rate.  Pay particular attention to the timing and rhythm of your in-breath and out-breath.

Second; Next time you are in a neutral or negative state, start breathing at the rate and rhythm from exercise one, and within a minute or so, the positive state should begin to return.

Many of the ancient text advise people to do breathing exercises regularly. Tony Robbins in his book “Unlimited Power”, advises that you start each day with a breathing exercise of inhaling slowly and deeply, then holding it for twice as long as the inhalation and exhaling in twice the pace. It really is invigorating and a great way to get motivated at the start of the day, especially if you are looking to do some things with your day that require motivation.

Breathing is powerful! It’s essential to our life force, and is a major influencer on our state of mind.

So, finally; Start breathing comfortably but deeply, in through your nose & out through your mouth. Imagine that you are breathing from that area of your abdomen just beneath your belly button. Make the in-breath last to a count of 5 and the out-breath to a count of 6.  Continue for at least 2 minutes, and notice what happens.

These techniques can be very powerfully utilized when wanting to get in control of your state if you are going through a period of change such as reducing your weight, stopping smoking or developing more confidence.

Please remember that most people don’t breathe nearly enough.  Start to breathe more deeply and notice how much better you feel.  Have lots of fun with this. Notice how good you can make yourself feel when you breathe differently.