“Reflection must be reserved for solitary hours;
whenever she was alone, she gave way to it as the greatest relief.”
~ Jane Austen
It’s Sunday morning and I’ve just returned from our family’s vacation. Part of my brain is still swaying with the waves along the beautiful sandy beach. I find myself reflecting on the last ten days: recalling all we did and saw, the people we spent time with, the experiences we had. I did my best to keep up in my journal as we went along…. but there are a few gaps I will be filling in over the next few days.
This week presents a great opportunity for us to explore the journalling process a little bit, because in my experience, writing and art have been the greatest repository for reflection.
Reviews and Replays
“Dear diary, today I did this…”
Our lives are filled with adventures near and far as well as special things to remember: where we went, the company we enjoyed, what we saw, where we ate, the connections made. I strive to count my blessings and practice gratitude; to focus on the silver linings. Things to fill the heart and buoy life.
Of course, life is not always sunshine and butterflies. There are journal entries that are nothing but spit and vinegar: all the hurt and anger vomited onto the page so as not to have it creating dis-ease by festering in my mind and heart. Through the process of writing, the pain can be processed and let go; these writings have sometimes even been burned, releasing both the ashes and toxicity out to the ether.
Mirrors and Boomerangs
“What I send out will come back to me”
In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna tells us that we have a right to our actions, but no right to the result of those actions; people will do what they will with what we put out there. Yet, if we don’t reflect on what we are creating with our energy, our actions and our thought forms, then how will we know we’re doing the best we can? If it is True that we create our own lives, the world we live in, then isn’t it worthwhile to reflect on whether we’re creating the life and world we want?
“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
~ Soren Kierkegaard
~ or ~ “meditation with a pen”
(and maybe a little watercolor, collage, photos, etc.)
Whether sitting in silence on my meditation cushion or working in my journal, I consider what is happening in my life and the direction I want to take. There are many questions and I must be still to listen for the answers:
~ What ideas and thoughts are dominating my life right now? Are these the patterns I wish to create?
~ How do I feel about this event or or that conversation? Did it go well? Could it have gone better?
~ In what ways have I learned something, grown in some way, or raised my vibration? Have I healed something? In what way have I helped another to do the same?
Ultimately, Reflection is the basis of Self-Study, a learning tool for how to get along in the world; a means to review thoughts and actions and what results were derived from them. There are so many joys and sorrows and challenges in our lives, we must take a little time to pause and appreciate the fullness and richness they bring to our lives. By recording these things, we can begin to realize how far we’ve come, to recognize patterns that repeat, and, most importantly, to cherish the gifts.
“I am a writer of books in retrospect.
I talk in order to understand; I teach in order to learn.”
~ Robert Frost
~ Invitation ~
Given that this is the tenth week of this series, we have a perfect opportunity to consider how the cultivation of the past nine Bliss Habits have influenced or completely changed our lives:
Adventure. Mindfulness. Dream. Practice. Naked. Courage. Listening. Nourish. Change.
What have you noticed? Where have you grown?
What needs more work? What didn’t resonate at all?
I am a wife and a mom, a yogi, an artist, and a writer… but not always in that order! I tend to think in collage and have trouble starting my day without coffee (black). I am a contemplative and a seeker on this wonderful, odd trip that is this human life. I love to have adventures and detest fences of any kind. Dedicated to my journal, I blog part-time at www.vignettesfrommylife.blogspot.com