Lots of people don’t do things that bring them joy because they’re busy. A lot of us have a habit of talking about all the things we want to do or wish we could do more of without making the time and effort to make these things happen.
What brings you happiness? What lights you up? If you don’t know what those things are, you are not alone. Self-awareness is a big part of bringing more of what you love into your life, and if you don’t feel like you know what you love, you might need some help to become more self-aware. To bring more of what you love into your life and connect with yourself, reflection through writing is a great tool.
I’m going to share an exercise in self-reflection that I’d like you to try if you want to bring more joy into your life and become more self-aware. You’ll need a piece of paper, divided in half with a fold or a drawn line.
- Free write all the things you love to do.
On the left side of your piece of paper, write down all the things you know you enjoy. To dig a little deeper and connect with yourself, think about the things you do that bring you peace of mind, ease, relaxation and happiness. Some examples are:
- Bubble baths
- Drinking tea and reading
- People watching
- Going for walks in nature or by the water
- Skyping with friends
- Cooking and listening to music
- Yoga and meditating
If this exercise feels difficult, notice that, but don’t judge yourself. Know that this exercise might actually help you connect and discover parts of yourself you weren’t fully aware of before. We all have down days, and we need a toolbox of things that will bring us a little bit of sunshine when we need it.
- Free write what gets in the way.
One the right side of the page, write down all the reasons you give yourself that you can’t do the things you love. Do you tell yourself you don’t have enough time or money? Do you make the excuse that you’ll do it later or that you have low energy?
Look for patterns in this part of the exercise. If you often tell yourself your energy is too low, for example, it can help bring awareness to how you self-sabotage when you want to feel good.
When you’re finished with this exercise, keep this piece of paper handy so that you can always look back to it whenever you feel like making excuses. The awareness you create in doing this exercise will help you develop a deeper self-awareness and bring more of what you want and how you want to feel into your life.