How Art Journaling Saved My Spirit

Friends, 2021 has not been kind to many of us! 

The difficulties of the year seem to have hit our family significantly. Starting with a miscarriage in January, my mom's Alzheimer's diagnosis in November, and the death of my father-in-law in December...among many other little setbacks throughout the year.

I've caught myself tailspinning a few times in the last few months. I knew I had to put some changes in place, or I'd just lose my mind.

Selfish Time

First things first, I decided to dedicate the first hour of each day to "selfish" pursuits. I had been trying to jump into work right away, and it was stealing my joy! This selfish time can be exercise, time with scripture, or some time at my art desk. In the past, I've found it difficult to prioritize these things...they seem more frivolous than the work on my to-do list. But, they are often much more important than my tasks. This selfish time has been good for my mental health more than anything else, which makes me a better mother, a more efficient worker, and a more pleasant person to be around!

The Art Journal

This brings me to my art journal.

I am not a consistent journaler. I write here and there, then pick up my journal again two or three months later. And I've often beat myself up about it! But this time around has been different. I decided to let go of the writing portion of journaling and just paint for fun rather than try to fill pages and lines. 

I started by purchasing a good watercolor sketchbook.* 

I used washi tape to tape off sections and keep things nice and clean. Each month starts with a calendar.

And then each day (if I'm lucky) gets its own entry. I don't journal every day. I journal when I can. Sometimes I paint something abstract, sometimes I reflect on the daily readings or a feast day, and sometimes I just paint something silly. But the 15 or 20 minutes I've spent each on this journal in the last few months has been so rewarding.

I'm not focusing on perfection...just enjoying the therapy of a little daily art session.



You can check out a few more of these designs in progress on my Instagram Reels. In the meantime, this relaxed art journaling is something I absolutely recommend. It grounds me each morning and I actually use the time I spend on it to pray or meditate, or just prepare for the day ahead. 



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