They say there is never a good time to start changing your life. You just have to start. Period. Just start. Of course, from deep seated fear of change, we keep pushing it off, waiting for the perfect date on the calendar, a Monday, the 1st of the month, next week, after that big dinner we have planned, tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow. Does that sound familiar?
A specific date doesn’t mean much, it’s the action behind it that matters.
On January 2nd (because January 1st was for junk food, lots of coffee and the Rose Parade) I started a 19 day Journal Prompt Challenge. 19 days, for 2019. Sounded simple enough and I wanted to begin journaling again on a regular basis anyway. It was a good goal to start the year.
Every entry I wrote in my journal began like this: Jan 2, 2019. Home at the kitchen table. 6:15 am. Then I would write. I’d either rewrite or paraphrase the prompt for the day and answer the daily question, or I would simply write down how I was feeling and what was happening in my life! Almost every day I listed the things I was most thankful for from the day before. It was a good exercise in being more grateful.
Except, those 19 prompts took 28 days to complete.
So much has happened this month, from hospitals to hospice care to death to wedding plans, vacation plans, potty training, rain, teaching, taking care of my Mom and trying to sneak in a nap on occasion. It has been a whirlwind to say the least. As I look back, there was a lot of learning. Life has definitely changed.
Re-reading the past month of prompts, some sentences struck me as I struggled and learned! “Deep down, soul changing, life and attitude changing lessons are mine, if only I am open to learn.” If only I am open to learn…
Once upon a time, I would have hated that it took 28 days to do 19 prompts. My negative inner critic would have been all over it. Lots of horrible thoughts would have gone through my head about never finishing a task, not being good enough to stick to 19 straight days of anything, never finishing anything on time… My inner voice is a real bitch. However, her voice is getting smaller. I’m learning it’s not always the end result, it’s the journey. January was a hell of a journey and you know what? I finished! That’s right, I finished ALL the prompts. That was the goal and it’s something to celebrate. I gave myself grace and courage to just be. Some days the only task I had for myself was to journal and brush my teeth. Much of my time was spent taking care of everyone else. Anything else for me was too much. Many, many days I was emotionally overwhelmed. That’s Ok. Some days just surviving the day is enough, especially when you’ve got so many other things happening. I learned through it too. I learned I need to give myself grace and let go of trying to be perfect and together all the time. It’s not perfect. It and I am a work in progress.
Regardless of the fact it took 28 days, I still finished. I am proud of myself for that! Do you have a goal that took longer than you expected? Did you give yourself grace for the extra time it took to complete? I hope so. We all deserve a bit of extra grace in our lives.
I’m looking forward to new journal prompts and a new month! Bring it on February!