As gifted creative entrepreneurs, we ride the wave between our right and left brains. We can be very logical and also very “artsy.” Did you know there’s a way to use art to support your logical side? It’s called art journaling and it’s a great way to overcome blocks that may be holding you back in your business by helping to fast forward your thinking in the right direction. It’s also BEA-utiful…
Art journaling can be done by anyone and has been proven to be effective in helping people deal with trauma, depression and fears as well as used for decision-making and personal growth.
Art journaling is defined as:
An art diary, art journal or visual journal is a daily journal, often containing both words and sketches, and occasionally including Mixed media elements such as collages.
Anyone can art journal. All you need is a journal – which can be as specific as a journal designed for art journaling (with heavier bond paper) or as simple as a notebook or composition book. You will also need something to write or draw with.
Of course, since art journals are as individual as the person creating them, adding other elements including paint, collage materials, or even photos, is, of course, fair game, too.
So, what do you put in an art journal and how can it help?
Art journaling can allow you to see your feelings in a deeper way and can help your inner child come out to play.
Try these quick exercises:
Write in your journal (or on a piece of paper) all of the negative things you tell yourself, such as:
- I’m no good
- I can’t do anything right
- I hate my thighs
- I’m not good enough
- I’m a bad mother
(these are just examples – I’m sure that your inner critic can add a few to the list!)
When you feel that you have “gotten it all out”, take a black marker or, better yet, two or three paints in colors that make you feel happy and completely cover your entire page. As you paint over it, say goodbye to the negative thoughts and tell yourself “I am fabulous. My inner critic needs to be quiet – she doesn’t know a thing. I’m letting go of the bad thoughts and promise to speak kindly to myself”. When completely covered (and dry!), write over the paint with all of the things about you that you should be proud of. These can be anything. Such as:
- I make an amazing turkey salad.
- My eyes are so pretty
- I’m a good friend
- I’m a great listener
- I can do a crossword puzzle quicker than anyone I know
These can be anything! They are the wonderful, beautiful things that make you, you!
Doesn’t it feel good to let go of the bad and hear good thoughts, instead. This is called “canyon speak”. If you keep telling yourself all of the negative things about you, it’s like yelling into a canyon and you hear them over and over like an echo. Instead, tell yourself all of the wonderful things about yourself. It’s like covering yourself in a blanket of self-love.
Now, perhaps, you have a big decision to make.
Art journaling assist here, too. Perhaps, it’s deciding to start your own business or quit your full-time job. Think of how the situation is now (before you make the decision) and draw what it looks like. You can add words, too, if you like.
On another sheet of paper (or the other side of the first one), draw what your life would look like after you’ve made the decision.
Now compare the two. Are you happier after the decision is made? Can you see yourself in the second picture? What thoughts come to mind?
This will work for any decision that you have to make. It allows you to visually work out whether the situation would be for good or bad and guide you based on that.
I encourage you to give art journaling a try. Keep a notebook in your purse or at your desk and draw/sketch or write what is on your mind and heart. Draw how you are feeling and dig deeper.
It’s Your Turn:
I’ve included a FREE PDF Art Journaling Jump for you! It has questions you can ask on a daily basis to dig deeper and explore your core. Feel free to print them out and write on them or use the questions in your own journal or art journal. Let me know how it goes.