During October, I completed Ell’s self discovery journal challenge. The thinking behind it is to dig deep and explore what you really want out of life. It was the first time I’d done something like this, but I really enjoyed it!
The reason I decided to do this is that the future has always freaked me out. I’ve never had any idea what I wanted to do, or the direction I wanted my life to go. My usual tactic is to avoid thinking about it but, lately, it’s been popping up in my thoughts more and more (possibly because I’m on a few years away from turning 30). With the help of my counsellor, I’ve been trying to identify who I am, and what I want. This activity was perfect to accompany and aid that process.
There is a great mix of questions which are general and left up to your own interpretation. They cover different aspects of life, both personal and professional. I doubt I’ll ever put much emphasis on career so I loved that the questions weren’t too focussed on that.
There are 31 questions, so doing it in October seemed like a natural fit. It was a great incentive to use one of the many unused notebooks I have lying around. At the end of September, I wrote each question out, and left a couple of pages for my response.
There were a couple of things I enjoyed about this:
- It was an activity that didn’t involve a screen. Given that I spend most of my day on my laptop, it was refreshing to have somewhere else to focus my attention.
- It became “me time”. After the first week, I began looking forward to those 15 minutes of deep thought and reflection. I mostly wrote my answers in the evening, but I did include it as an act of self-care on a couple of afternoons.
I did struggle to answer some of the questions. This, for me, highlighted things I need to think about a little more. For example, I’m not very good at giving myself credit so any question that asked me to note things I’m good at were a little tricky. In all honesty, some of these are either unanswered or half answered, but I’m working on it! I managed to come up with some answers and doing so made me feel good. It made me realise I need to invest more time in thinking about what I’m good at, rather than what I think I’m bad at.
My answers would have been completely different if I’d done them before I started blogging. My enthusiasm for blogging popped up on several occasions which was a nice reminder of how much I love it.
Several of the questions also encouraged gratitude and these were my favourite ones to answer. Thinking about what makes me happiest, and what I’m most grateful for, gave me perspective on how lucky I am. Unsurprisingly, my family, Neal and Juno were the most common answers here.
I found the self discovery journal challenge encouraged me to think about who I am right now, and who I would like to be in the future. It highlighted what’s really important to me. Although there weren’t any surprises and what came out was more or less what I expected, writing it down helped me to regain some focus.
It will be interesting to look back at my answers in a few months to see how things have progressed or changed!