5 Ways to Build Self-Confidence through Journaling
Six years ago, I was a HOT MESS!
My life was in chaos.
My MIND was in chaos.
I was depressed, confused, and frustrated.
I had no vision, no direction, and could NOT see my next steps.
I was STUCK. I had no goals, and I felt defeated!
During this time, my body began to change. My hair thinned dramatically, I lost 20 pounds (and trust me, it wasn’t cute y’all, I was skeletal!) My eyes grew dark and sunken, my skin pigmentation darkened, I lost muscle mass, and my neck was swollen due to a goiter. I was angry at my body! I compared myself to other “beautiful” women, and felt unworthy of my husband’s love.
You see, I had just been diagnosed with Grave’s Hyperthyroid Disease, and was facing a serious surgery, and/or radiation treatment. I was LITERALLY sick and tired IN and OF my unhealthy, unbalanced, and chaotic life!
I decided to choose radiation over surgery because I love to sing, and honey, surgery was just a little bit too close to home! During my treatment, I was isolated for 10 days. I mean ALONE, like with NO people in my life. My husband had to live in another part of the house, and my baby was 500 miles away with my parents, but during this lonely period, I had three things: God, My Pen, and My Journal. God gave me the strength to make it through, and my pen and journal gave me THE PLAN! This quiet time was a space for deep reflection, self-evaluation, and transformation.
I thought of my life, and how it was affecting others.
I thought of all the things that made me beautiful. I thought of the dreams and goals I had abandoned. I thought of what I could do if I had NO FEAR. I thought of pain and loss, of joy and hope. And I wrote...and cried...and wrote some more. I wrote for 10 days until my mind was clear, and through my writing, I found a pathway by which I emerged from the quiet, into life with a fresh desire to LIVE OUT LOUD!
Today, I am confident in my beauty, I am clear in my vision, I walk and live with purpose, I know what I want, I am FINALLY in a place where I can help others. My mind is clear, I am achieving my goals, I am challenging my comfort zones, and most importantly, I am healthy and well!
So, what’s YOUR story?
What are YOU going through right now? What is YOUR “Hot Mess?” I want you to know that you are not alone, but I will ask you, “What are YOU willing to do, to live the life YOU desire?” What are you willing to change to achieve your goals? What story are you willing to release so that you can be free? You cannot remain where you are, my love; you are going to have to create a new story. You will eventually have to make a SHIFT.
I love the word SHIFT. It is a simple concept of GRADUAL transformation. It just takes one tiny adjustment in your perspective, or one tiny action in your routine, or one tiny movement in the right direction, and your life will undergo massive change!
From those dark years, (as recorded above,) I compiled my thoughts and writings and created what I call The SHIFT Method of Intentional Change. I would love to share a bit of it with you.
Here are five ways YOU can use journaling to foster self-awareness, and self-confidence using The SHIFT Method:
1| SEE: See yourself for who you really are.
Sit with yourself in silence for just a few moments each day.
Look in the mirror, into the eyes of that woman across from you, and be fully present.
Be aware of her thoughts, her appearance, the way she regards you, her
Silence EVERY negative thought, and sit without judgement.
How does it feel to “sit” with myself?
How does it feel to look into MY eyes?
What thoughts and emotions show up for me in these moments?
2| HONOR YOUR STORY: Why are you here?
Ask yourself WHY? There is a reason for your thoughts and emotions in the above activity. There is a reason for the way you view yourself. Be truthful with yourself as you reflect on your feelings, thoughts, and writings.
What stories are associated with the feelings I have for myself and my body?
Who first told me that these thoughts and feelings were ok?
What experiences have I allowed to impact the way I view myself?
What old and negative stories do I have surrounding body image, beauty, womanhood…?
3| IDENTIFY OPTIONS & SOLUTIONS: What can YOU do for YOU?
Focus on what you need right now in order to be the woman you desire.
Focus on meeting your own needs.
Focus on giving yourself to yourself.
What do I need right now in order to move forward?
What needs to change so that I can be happy?
What are my fears? Why?
Where can I find support?
Draw a picture or describe in detail what it means to be your “ideal” self.
4| FORM A PLAN: Nothing changes without INTENTION!
Choose ONE of the above options/solutions to focus on at a time...
I intend to (solution goes here) by (date of completion goes here)
I need to do this for me because...
This is how I intend to (insert above solution here)
5| TAKE ACTION: One small action creates MOMENTUM.
Choose one or two small actions that you will take to foster the changes you desire in your life.
What ONE small action can I take today, that will move me closer to my goal?
Did I complete this one small action?
How am I feeling after I have completed my one small action?
An additional tip: Celebrate yourself for every small or large achievement! Repeat The SHIFT Method as often as you need in order to be successful, and change your story girl! The more you grow through what you go through, the greater your confidence will bloom…
Are you ready to let go of the self-doubt and insecurity and step into confidence and courage? Download ‘The Self-Love Revolution’ cheatsheet full of strategies that will help you kick-start your self-love journey TODAY!
Nicole Annette is a self-proclaimed Journal Junky who understands the power of Intentional Journaling. Journaling has had a huge impact in her life, and has promoted insight, healing, personal and professional growth. Her passion is to inspire others to transform their lives through the Intentional Journaling Practice.
Nicole has a M.Ed in Adult Learning and Development. She is the creator of The SHIFT Method of Intentional Change, and facilitates groups, college courses, workshops, and trainings on the subjects of literacy, personal development, self-awareness, life skills, and Intentional Journaling for the past 15 years.
Nicole is also the Owner and Maker behind the Journal Junky® brand: a line of earth-friendly stationery and guided journals. She enjoys meeting new people, hearing their stories, and connecting others.