Here’s a big tip for you: if you want to work out what’s going on for you, write it down.
You can think and mull it over, analyse it and cogitate about it to your hearts’ content. We’ve done that, we all do that, most of us spend a large portion of our lives doing that. We try to work it out, we try to see what’s underneath, we think and think and think…
And we end up going round and round in circles, getting nowhere.
You know the feeling, right? You think about something, you mull it over, you stew over it a little and you just keep coming back to the same thing, time after time after time. You can’t come to a different conclusion, you can’t see someone else’s viewpoint, you can’t move beyond stuff.
Thinking about it won’t give you the answer.
Imagine it this way (warning: Karen analogy coming up!): our minds are like a huge room. Over time, we’ve put boxes of things into that room, boxes of thoughts, beliefs, ideas, prejudices, experiences, everything that’s ever happened, everything that we’ve ever thought is contained in this room. Now, you can imagine that over time, the room is going to get pretty full of things, right? In fact, by the time we’re in our 40’s & 50’s, unless we’ve done some pretty harsh cleaning out, that room looks like a hoarders’ den; it’s filled from floor to ceiling with junk that we’ve never cleared out or gotten rid of.
When we try to work something out in that kind of mess, we’re in trouble. There’s so much stuff in there that the only place there is to move is this tiny little path that threads between all these boxes. There’s no freedom of movement, we can’t move around, we can only go along this same little narrow path because almost the entire place is full of stuff.
Can you picture that? Can you see how this might happen?
So, before we can see anything clearly, before we can think in a different way, before we can start to look deeper at things or think things through, we have to get rid of some of that junk. We have to clear out some of that stuff that’s in our minds.
We have to declutter our minds.
Because until we do, we’re not going to be able to think about things differently, whether that’s about money or relationships or a business or career, nothing, until we can take a different path to the one we’ve been treading for so long, the one that wends its way through all that junk that our minds are stuffed with right now.
The way to declutter our mind is to get all that junk OUT of our minds and down onto paper.
We need to journal.
Now, I’ve got to say, I was never the worlds’ biggest fan of journaling. One of my coaches bought me a journal many years ago and I sat there with a pen, feeling rather stupid and not one single thing came out for me to write down. Not one. I gave up. It wasn’t until about 10 years later when, on a whim, I bought a book on journaling and then the penny dropped.
It’s all about questions, asking yourself questions. When I ask myself the right questions, a whole deluge of stuff comes out! When I first started journaling and I was trying to get my life back on track less than two years ago, I spent three weeks just writing…
Actually, I gave up on the writing pretty early on because there was just too much to say; I typed it all instead. I wrote close on 50,000 words in that time and I wasn’t a quick typist. I got all this junk out of my head and suddenly, everything looked completely different; I had the room to think about things in a new way.
Now, I’ll spend a few minutes journaling at least morning & night and sometimes during the day, too, particularly if I’m having trouble sleeping or I feel restless, I just start writing until I’m clear.
So, if someone (like me!) puts up a question up at the end of a post or in a quote or graphic, write the question down in a journal (it doesn’t have to be anything special; a normal notepad will do fine) and write down the answers. Don’t judge yourself, don’t judge what you’re writing, just write and keep writing. See what comes out.
Hi! I’m Karen O’Connor, hormonally-challenged, peri-menopausal writer, blogger, self-confessed sarcasm enthusiast, mother of 4, wife of 30 years, destroyer of souls... no, wait, that's just in the mornings...