A while ago I took the Layers of Life Visual Journal workshop and one of the first things we were told to do in our journal was to give ourselves permission.
I love this and I think it’s something we don’t do enough of.
It might seem a bit unnecessary, maybe. You think, well of course I have permission to write in my journal, duh.
But have you given yourself permission to do all the things you want to do? To make a mess, to make mistakes, to cross things out and start again, to look foolish, to try new things, to dream of a better life – even start to take steps towards it?
Your journal can be a powerful tool if you give yourself permission to just be, however you want, inside it.
I’ve mentioned ad nauseam about my perfectionism, so for me giving myself permission to make a mess is a big deal. So many times I’ve started a journal and it’s not until halfway through that I’ve realised that I’m too afraid to make a mistake or do anything that risks not being pretty!
Not to mention I seem to unconsciously give myself rules each time I start a new journal – what I
can and cannot journal about in that journal, what type of journaling it will be, etc.
How freeing (and admittedly a little scary) it is to declare in the front of my journal that it can be for any damn thing I want it to be: writing, painting, stamping, collage, washi tape, watercolours, scribbles, stencils, sketches, doodles, prompts, stream-of-consciousness, lists, mindmaps, nonsense, ideas, dreams etc. WHATEVER!
So I urge you the next time you start a new journal – or heck, even in the middle of your journal right now – to dedicate a page to giving yourself permission.You could list the things you want to do, collage images, draw – whatever feels good and best represents the creative freedom you need.