Category Archives: Journal Prompt

The GAP between Knowledge and Intelligence

It is said that KNOWLEDGE is having the right answer and that INTELLIGENCE is asking the right question.

I am learning the hard lesson – it is ok, and even good, to ask questions.

It is hard to ask a question. When something is being explained, and I ask a question, the other person can become defensive in a response. As if my question is calling their information inaccurate. It is hard at this moment to explain that I am asking questions because I do not fully understand. I am asking for clarification.

On the other side of that dilemma is after the fact when I make an error because I didn’t ask the question. When confronted I get often got the answer ‘you should have asked me’.

To a people pleaser, this causes great anxiety and frustration. If I ask I may be wrong. If I don’t ask I may be wrong. I can’t win.

Part of my People-Pleasing Recovery is accepting there will be someone unhappy with me. All the time. There will be no time in my life when everyone will be pleased with me.

Thus, I must look to myself. What information do I need in this situation? How will I be able to use this information to complete what I must do? There is only one way to find out. ASK THE RIGHT QUESTION.

I am not talking about shared gossip, wanting to know more. That is a topic for another post.

This is requiring information for me to move forward.

If I am about to run a race, I need to be properly clothed and wearing appropriate shoes. Asking questions to seek knowledge dresses me for the occasion.

What information do you need to move forward? What do you need to know to make that decision that is weighing on you?

The gap between KNOWLEDGE and INTELLIGENCE is closed by asking questions.

What questions do you need to ask right now? Take time this week to journal your thoughts so you may close the gap.

Failure Refines Me

I came across a quote this past week that started me thinking back over failures in my life with a new light.

Failure does not define me.

Failure refines me.

So many things I have tried, experienced, attempted did not turn out the way I wanted them to.

There were times I chose to accept that as an ending. Relationships failed, career opportunities ended, learning ceased.

I had difficulty looking at this. I found myself paralyzed, looking at the failures and remaining the mindset of defeat. “I am a failure, nothing I do is right.”

I call that thing Abstract Absolutes.

Webster defines “abstract” as disassociated from any specific instance; and defines “absolute” as positive, unquestionable.

An “Abstract Absolute” occurs when you take one moment of non-success and make it into an ALWAYS

Example:  I just messed up making dinner tonight. It didn’t turn out right. I always do this. I cannot cook. I am a failure in the kitchen. I can’t even boil water!

WHY DO WE DO THIS TO OURSELVES?!?!?!

The truth in that scenario: I have fixed 3 meals a day without any problems for weeks/months/years. I had an issue tonight. That’s all it is. Something went wrong tonight with this one meal. I am a good cook who just didn’t fix a tasty meal this one time.

I had to choose to look differently at these moment. As I looked again, with a new mindset, I found that I grew in those times when I looked at what could be considered a failure and chose to work past it, learning, growing, refining.

I had to choose to look differently at the situation to intentionally learn and move forward.

Long time comedian, George Burns tells that when he started performing, he would do so bad that he would change his name so that booking agents would hire him, not knowing of the last failure. He learned from each failed performance, improving and perfecting his skills.

I didn’t have to change my name, but I have had to look at each ‘performance’ to improve and perfect my skills.

I will not please everyone.

Not everyone will like me.

This was a hard lesson to learn, but accepting it has helped me to move forward. For every criticism I received, there will be 9 compliments. I must choose to focus on the compliment. I can look at the criticism and determine it’s validity. If there is something there, learn from and grow. But I must not dwell and stop.

This week’s journal prompt asks you to look at your refining moments. CELEBRATE!! You have come a long way.

You may not be where you want to be, but look at how far you have come.

If you are comfortable doing so, please share your refining moments or thoughts.

Defining FEAR: a Journal Prompt

Scrolling through social media, listening to news reports, many are feeling fearful.

What is fear? Some define it as:

* False Evidence Appearing Real

* Forgetting Everything is All Right

* Future Events Already Ruined

What do you fear? How do you respond to fear? What effect does fear have on you?

This week’s journal prompt asks you to reflect on fear. What is it? How does it affect you? Where has it taken/left you?

Where do you find the strength to defeat the fear?

Journal Prompt

Can you think back to a time you wanted to do something, but were afraid to do for fear you would fail?

When I look at that question my mind floods with a multitude of opportunities missed for this very reason. What if I fail?

Now think back. Think to a time you were afraid to do something for fear of failing, but you did it anyway. What was the outcome? What did you learn?

One such incident for me occurred last summer. I had been wanting to begin doing YouTube videos of encouragement, but each time I saw myself on video I said no I couldn’t do it. I don’t look good on camera. I am not professional enough. Who cares what I have to say?

One day I woke up, and I don’t know what got into me, but I brushed my hair, put on a little makeup (I am not much of a makeup gal) and with an idea in mind – not even a full script – I turned on the camera and started speaking.

I started talking about dreaming and made an acronym for the word DREAM. I described the letter D and said the others would follow.

I JUST COMMITTED TO AT LEAST 4 MORE VIDEOS!!

Knowing I would look inexperienced, I chose not to do editing. I checked the video to be sure it was framed correctly and the audio worked. After that I slapped on an opening and closing frame and posted to YouTube.

I did it!! My first video post.

I have posted several videos since then, and even interviewed other women, helping them step in front of the camera.

I realized one day, I look just like I would if we were to meet face to face. This is me. Why do I want to be someone different in front of a camera?

Now, it is your turn.

Describe a time you were afraid to do something fearing failure, but you did it anyway.

What was the outcome? What did you learn?

If you are comfortable doing so, share your experience in the comments.

Journal Prompt – LAUGH

With the Covid-19 scare, a lot of people are in their homes, unable to go anywhere. Many businesses have shut down, and news reports can bring great discouragement.

That is why this this week’s journal prompt encourages you to LAUGH!!

Write about something made you laugh recently. Look around. What made you smile and laugh? Think about it.

THEN continue writing about new laughing moments throughout the week. Look around you. Watch for that moment. It may be fleeting, but when you see it, capture it!

If you feel comfortable doing so, share your moments of laughter in the comments below.

Journal Prompt – forgiving me

For this week’s journal prompt, stop for a moment and reflect…..

“What does it look like to forgive myself?”

I don’t know about you. I can only speak for myself. But I don’t think I am alone.

I can forgive anyone else. There is only 1 person I find it difficult to forgive. Me.

I expect a level of perfection from myself that is impossible to achieve. And unforgivable when that level of perfection is not reached.

I know, it doesn’t make sense. It is unreasonable. Yet, it is a daily struggle.

Take a moment this to journal and consider, “What does it look like to forgive me?” Only when I look for it will I be able to begin to take a step toward it.

Journal Prompt

This week’s journal prompt is easy, but don’t just breeze past it. Stop and really consider, what energizes you?

Perhaps this week you might want to take note of moments you were energized and what led to that.

Become mindful of where the energy comes from.

If you wish, share your energizing moments in the comments.

Journal Prompt – One Thing

This week’s journal prompt looks at doing one thing you have been avoiding.

What is one thing you have been avoiding completing?

Explore why you have been avoiding it, what completing this will provide for you, how you will accomplish this, & how you will feel when it’s done.

Journal Prompt – What I Like About Me

If a friend asked you to tell them something you liked about them, would you have any trouble doing so? Probably not.

What if you asked what you like about yourself? Would you have trouble with that?

I know there are times that I do. That’s why this week’s journal prompt asks you to reflect on some things you like about yourself.

I want to encourage you to “be honest in your evaluation of yourself” (see Romans 12:3) while you look within.

What do you like about yourself? The list is endless.

Journal Prompt – seeking goodness and hope

I had to turn off the news and close the tabs to social media.

I couldn’t take it anymore. The longer I focused on these the more discouraged and depressed I became. Sadness, destruction, and defeat seem to reign. Time to take a break.

Once I stepped away from these I found so much to be thankful for.

  • I stepped out onto my deck to enjoy the beautiful weather.
  • I talked on the phone with a friend and laughed over silly shenanigans in our homes.
  • I did a video call with my grandchildren, smiling at their precious faces.

Even in challenging times, goodness and hope may be found when you look for it.

Where are you finding goodness and hope today?