Journal prompts you need to ask yourself to improve your life
I just started reading ”The Four Agreements – A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” by Don Miguel Ruiz. It’s a book that has been on my to-read list for a while now. On one of the first pages, he talks about how we haven’t chosen much in our lives. We haven’t chosen our religion, our mother language, or even our own name. He says that all those things were decided for us by other people.
Now, I don’t know where he’s going with that yet because I stopped reading shortly to start writing this blog post, but I’m going to share a few things that crossed my mind while reading that. You can use the questions I’ll mention as a journal prompts, but more on journal prompts later.
I want to ask you – are you really you? Did you break free from the life where everything is decided for you, and started making your own decisions? Or do you still live a life based on what others tell you to do, think or say? Who is living your life? Who is choosing for you?
I went to college for 3 years, settled for studying Spanish and Italian language and literature because I didn’t get in on Swedish and German. (Tip #1 – Never settle.) I quit after 3 years because I realized that just because everyone else is going to college doesn’t mean that it has to be a part of my life as well. (And reading a couple of Don Quijote chapters over and over again for different kinds of analysis only made me question the minds of people who chose it as a part of must-read literature for people in their 20s.)
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Let’s look for a second at those people who are going to college. A lot of people I know don’t even like it. They went to college just to move away from their parents and start being independent. Also, if that’s your main goal, believe me, there are plenty of ways you can achieve it without feeling miserable and stressed in the process. Those people are constantly under a lot of pressure because they have classes for the whole day, homework, seminars, and then exams. And, at the end of the day, their parents telling them ”The only thing you have to do is to study.” Hmm, not as simple as it sounds, mom. Especially when you have to study something you don’t even like. To do a job you’re not going to like. And then dream of being happy. You can’t be happy if you’re doing things that are making you feel miserable.
Sure, there are also people who do great at college. So if you got into college you truly like and you are passionate about it, go for it! But if you’re struggling with finding motivation because you just don’t enjoy it and you couldn’t care less about any of the classes… Ask yourself is it really worth it. Is it worth it to waste your years because someone else expects you to do what they think is the best for you? Only you know what’s the best for you. Because only you live your life. Other people can only give opinions based on their own life, but that has nothing to do with you.
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If you have no idea what to do, do nothing. Give yourself a few days of rest, ask yourself meaningful questions and you’ll get the answer as to what you want to do. There’s nothing wrong about doing nothing. Why wouldn’t you give yourself a few days of just reconnecting with yourself? Disconnect from social media, redecorate your room, watch some inspiring movies, read a book… Ask yourself how are you feeling each day and what makes you feel good. Write about what makes you feel bad. Realize when you feel bad, what is making you feel that way and what is the solution for that.
Here is Oprah Winfrey’s video on what to do when you have no idea what to do.
When did we stop caring about our own needs? I often hear my neighbor’s kids playing on the street and their grandparents calling them to stop playing and go to bed. The kids are always protesting to that. I always hear some girl yelling ”No”. So when did we stop doing what we enjoy and started listening to other people’s advice? Actually, not advice, but directions. And why do we listen to other people’s ”directions”? Who are those people?
If your mother is telling you what you should be doing in life, and she’s a person who is in a big debt and has a 9-to-5 job she hates… Should you be listening to her advice? I don’t think so.
If your friend is giving you relationship advice and their longest relationship was 3 months long during high school… Or even a friend that had 5 years long relationship filled with cheating and lies… Should you be listening to their advice?
Find people who are living their life according to your own definition of success, and see what they have to say. Ask yourself what does success look like for you. The definition of success is different for everyone. For some it may mean having a big family, living in a small town, sending kids to college one by one… For some, it may mean being their own boss, traveling the world, sharing their life with a significant other and having a dog… Define success according to your own goals and go in that direction.
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Journal Prompts eBook
In my ”100 Steps Closer” eBook (you can find it here) I am offering you more than 100 journal prompts for 100 areas of your life so that you can understand yourself better. Journal prompts are in-depth questions you ask yourself about yourself and your life. Even a simple question as ”how are you” can help you check in with yourself and realize if maybe you are thirsty, do you crave a certain food, are you sleep deprived, what emotions are you having and why are you having them etc. It may sound silly, but it’s often overlooked.
Nowadays, while we constantly rush through our tasks and our to-do’s, we rarely ask ourselves anything. We rarely put our own needs as a priority. We are full of questions for other people, but what about us? Ask yourself how are you. Ask yourself do you like your job. Are you happy in your relationship?
This post was inspired by a quote saying that we didn’t choose much when we were younger. So now I encourage you to start using journal prompts to realize what do you want. What does your ideal day or week look like? What does your ideal life look like and what are the steps you need to take to start living it?
How does going to work and doing your current job every day feel like? Do you like how your room is looking right now? Do you like your hair? Are you enjoying being in your relationship?
Ask yourself questions. Realize what do you want in life. Understand that you are the only person living your life, and therefore, you are the only person who can change it.
And remember, you can achieve anything you set your mind to. There is always a way if you are 100% willing to go towards your ideal life.
Have a great day,