Whenever you feel a creative block, turn to your journal
Although I completed The Artist’s Way programme two years ago, I still dip in for journalling prompts. Some of these ideas are adapted from themes Julia Cameron asks you to explore. Here are 15 tried and tested prompts for your journal
Encourage and nurture your Inner Artist:
1. A letter to your encourager, Write to someone who has helped you but has no idea that their words spurred you on
2. A letter to your detractors, are there some inner critic voices that have stuck in your head? Tell them! But don’t send the letter.
3. What is your perfect day, if you no obligations. You may be surprised how simple your needs are but you should definitely write as if money is no object. Then take even a small piece of that dream day and put it in your week.
Make plans for the life you want
4. If you have a list of goals, review them and write down even small ways you have worked towards them. This can be so encouraging and also remind you to break down those goals into more manageable chunks
5. List places you love going, this has been a really helpful one with so much staying at home in pandemic times. It will be no surprise that I quickly identified woodland as places I want to go as well as missing the theatre and cafes for writing.
6. Ask yourself what your dream job looks like. If it doesn’t align with what you do right now, what are the steps you can take
7. The five senses of gratefulness. You should probably write what you are grateful for eveyday, but it is fun to think about each sense and write five things for each that you love having: warm socks, a favourite album -all those things that bring you joy.
8. Friends you have forgotten. I have been working on a book a lot about friendship and this lead to me listing lots of people who have been my friends for a season and how they have helped me
9. Write your alternative reality. Are there other lives you could have led. Are there opportunities you didn’t follow? Jobs you didn’t take up? I was supposed to move in with a friend when I took up a place in another city, what could have been?
10. Write down what you remember about your Grandma or any important relative or friend who has died. This can be emotional but also a heartening way to live, remembering small things about a person that was uniquely theirs is a beautiful way to hold the still.
11. Take Fierce Medicine. As Ana Forrest advises we should take fierce medicine or practice a death meditation to open us up to what we truly want, keep your journal close and reflect on what the thoughts of your last moments tell you. Then follow this guidance to change your life.
12. List song lyrics stuck in your head. This is a great way to realise what you are focused on. You can even make an inspirational playlist if the songs inspire you.
13. What books have you read recently? What are their commonalities, its surprising when you realise how you are going through a phase- I have read or listened to lots of classics, need light humour or adventures to listen or read about.
14. Plan your dream holiday. I took this one to a Pinterest board in the end. Even if it is not for now, it felt good to think we might go on holidays again. Some of the ideas may be far in the future as they are not practical for our family but I felt lighter just taking the trip in my head
15. Who do you admire and what do you admire about them? This can be interesting one to reflect on particularly if you follow people online but don’t know them. What are the things that you find so inspiring?
I would love to know if these journal ideas work for you. They always help me through a creative block.