Tuesday, January 4, 2011


Woman WritingMany years ago I introduced “I Want” lists into my own personal journal and made this technique a part of my regular journaling repertoire. The beginning of a new year is such a great time to use this method, I decided to introduce or re-introduce it to you.

An “I Want” list has a much different feel than a list of New Year resolutions. It’s not a matter of recording the usual “shoulds and oughts,” but using the energy and power of what you truly desire. Here are several suggestions to begin:

SET SOME TIME ASIDE. This doesn’t have to take long, not more than twenty minutes. Even that can be broken up into smaller chunks.

MAKE SURE YOU WON’T BE INTERRUPTED. Close your door, turn off your phone, and silence your e-mail message alert.

CLOSE YOUR EYES AND LET YOUR BREATHING SLOW. It may take a few moments to settle down, but stay with it.

WHEN YOU ARE READY, QUICKY SKETCH, DRAW OR LIST THE AREAS OF YOUR LIFE THAT ARE MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU. This might include family, self-care, work, creativity, health, or personal or spiritual growth.

AS QUICKLY AS YOU CAN, RESPOND IN EACH AREA TO THE QUESTION, “WHAT DO I REALLY WANT?” In as much as possible, do this without editing. This is not about being practical, but about letting the energy of what you want carry you forward.

Try this exercise several times throughout the month. If it appeals to you, take your list a step further and create a collage or sketch to illustrate what you want.

Let us know what happens!

Take good care,

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  1. Doing "resolutions" as "what I want" -- what a great idea! It totally shifts the energy and removes failure from the equation. THANK YOU!

  2. I work at a University and we have a wonderful life coach here. His saying to us (when we say it) is, "Quit shouldin' all over yourself."

    As Margot says, that takes away the negativity and potential for failure.