Find Your Lost Self in a Journal

What’s missing? You.

To find your way back, all you need is paper, pen, and a moving hand. Write your way to the inside of your true self. Find the self that is lost, loaned out, or drained. The self that you let someone borrow yet was never returned.

Writing is one of many pathways to help increase awareness. Uncover your thoughts under layers of emotion. Learn how you lost yourself. In doing so, you will  find yourself.

Take a step to ground yourself in what you already know. Find your own answers. Uncover wisdom that is hidden in old pages or created in new words.

Benefits of journaling:

When I write, I integrate what I’ve known with what I’m learning. Journaling gives words to experiences. The words form a picture in my mind. I can call on the ideas when I need them most.

I started keeping a diary when I was 12. And, if I need a good laugh, I read about early crushes I had on boys. It’s fun to look at life again through my younger self’. I experienced everything for the first time. And, it’s even more refreshing to realize how far I’ve come.

It’s also exciting to re-read more recent entries. I notice that I’m making some of my dreams and goals come true. And, I graciously watch myself re-learn hard life lessons. Not everything is new, but I am becoming who I want to be.

Here’s a poem I wrote almost a decade ago:

Lost and Found

Indecision
Anger
Guilt
Worry
Clues that you’ve lost your way

Standing here lost
Holding on
Hoping
Believing
Seeking

Original thought returning
Filtering
Finding
Holding still
Experiencing your true self

Not wavering when others speak
Nor absorbing what others feel
Staying true to yourself

Calm takes over
Self doubt leaves
Clouds evaporate
Peace sets in
And you’re back again

8 Journal Writing Tips:

Ready to dust off your old journal or try for the first time? While there are no right or wrong ways to journal, here are a few ideas to get you started.

  • Set the mood (candle, tea, special spot)
  • Clear out distractions (turn off phone, laptop, buzzing beeps)
  • Get comfortable (blanket, pillow, arm rest)
  • Make it fun (doodle, words, sketch)
  • Write for awareness (start with a sentence starter, like “I think…” or “I don’t want to think about…”)
  • Let the words flow (don’t edit or critique)
  • Brainstorm a list (dreams, goals, strengths)
  • Find inspiration (read quote or lyric)
  • Create a poem or story (about yourself, life, memories)

Do you journal or write poetry? Share what you find.

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I’m getting ready to put a dream into action, and write a book. I want your input, complete a quick survey on what you’d like to read about.

Photo Credit: “The book” by Dave Heuts

6 responses to “Find Your Lost Self in a Journal

  1. I don’t do much journaling but I always make a point of thinking on paper.
    When I have ideas, thoughts or feelings I feel that writing them down really helps and crystalizes it for me. It makes it easier for me to digest and understand.

    It helps me find my way back.

    • I agree that there is something calming about writing it down. For me, I imagine the thinking side of my brain is activated, slowing down my reactions, so I can be more thoughtful.

  2. I love keeping a journal. I sleep with one and also take one to work. The universe is full of messages that I find myself annotating daily. Thank you for this post 😉

    • Thank you for visiting my blog Kenya. Yes, I find messages, meaning, and inspiration all around you. Part of why I write, if I don’t get them down, they nag at me!

  3. I’ve journaled infrequently throughout my life, and what I’ve found most telling in the process are the “mistakes” I make when I’m writing quickly. I’ll write a word other than the one I had planned next – my subconscious taking the wheel for a moment.

    I too enjoy reading my past entries. It’s like watching a mystery movie for the second time and picking up on all the obvious clues that were invisible the first time around! It also helps me not to stress about current worries when I see how past issues resolved themselves. To paraphrase the Rolling Stones, I may not have always gotten what I wanted, but I certainly got what I needed!

    Thanks for a wonderful blog & a great post! I look forward to reading more!

    Bex

    • Bex, a journal as my very own mystery novel. While I don’t know that my life is that entertaining, it is interesting to return to previous seasons of my life. See what was important to me at the time, how I tried to solve it, and how it may have resolved all on it’s own. I think it’s like my own research database, but mystery novel sounds more fun!