Exploring Creativity with Carly of The Journal Life.
I’ve been a fan of creativity all my life, I love painting with watercolours, doodling, writing, collaging, cross-stitching, the list goes on. These activities bring me so much joy and they allow me mindful, present time with myself. When I realised that I could incorporate my love for creativity into my business and my coaching I was ecstatic.
I’m Carly, Creative Life Coach, Positive Psychology Practitioner and founder of The Journal Life.
I help people-pleasing perfectionists ditch social expectations so they can create a life on their terms and thrive.
I do this through many different methods including working with spectacular humans in one-to-one coaching settings, groups, workshops, my online membership The True Self Society and online courses.
And today I want to share with you why I love using creativity within my coaching business.
I guess we should start with the important question of why creativity and what’s it all about?
I specialise in the use of journaling and other creative methods such as visual imagery, visualisations, and metaphor work but also allowing clients to use the creative methods that work for them.
When you allow yourself to explore your thoughts, feelings and emotions using these methods you can access areas of your subconscious that you can’t easily access through conversations.
I often run creative workshops with clients through which they are free to use whatever creative methods they feel called to use. Sometimes this is just writing, other times it’s exploring the use of paints, collage and more.
Many times the individuals who attend these sessions share how memories resurface off the back of this exploration that they haven’t thought about in years, sometimes decades. It’s almost as if they experience a somewhat hypnotic state through the mindful activity of creativity.
The exploration process unlocks the power of accessing areas of your subconscious that you don’t access regularly and it asks you to recall aspects of your life that may be influencing the way you are today. It is fascinating stuff.
When we are open and willing to explore these areas, we can discover some truly transformational things that are, in some cases, preventing us from moving forward.
They’re holding us in the past or blocking us from making the changes we need to.
Sometimes these are old stories that we are telling ourselves or thought patterns and habits that are so ingrained, that we don’t even realise they are problematic.
They are the limiting beliefs that we have convinced ourselves (through no fault of our own of course) are true. Once we allow ourselves to explore these through writing or creativity, the doors do start to open up and we can start re-writing our stories, and our narrative and can start to make positive changes in our lives.
Because I love this topic so much I recently carried out a piece of research (I’m hoping to have it published this Summer) looking at how the use of journaling in coaching can enhance the one-to-one life coaching experience.
I can confirm that the research found this particular methodology optimised and enhanced the experience for all clients who participated. All clients found that the journaling helped them to find solutions to their problems, helping them gain new perspectives on their issues. Client’s felt they could explore their thoughts and feelings in a deeper way than they could simply through conversation.
I knew this was the case, however, now we have evidence-based research to confirm just how powerful writing things down can be. There’s a ton of research out there around the use of journaling in therapy and other settings, but there is little to none in the area of coaching. As a result, I’m hoping to explore this more in the future.
So, let me ask you this, are you willing to get into the nitty-gritty of exploring your problems, your blocks, your deepest, darkest feelings by putting pen to paper? If you are then I encourage you to give these journal prompts a try:
• Who am I? (Try to avoid using labels here)
• What are the words you need to hear and from whom?
• What do I need to let go of?
• What is stopping me from moving forward?
• How can I welcome more joy into my life?
Now, there is only one rule when it comes to journaling and that is that you are open and honest on the page in front of you. This is where you are going to find the most power and gain the most benefits from your writing.
If you feel called to, you can also try these prompts using different creative mediums - try doodling, painting or even collage to explore each prompt. It is fascinating once you get stuck in.
What’s also important is that if you identify anything in your writing that you need to take action on then make sure you do so. What changes are the prompts asking of you? These don’t always need to be big changes, but explore this and make an action plan to keep you moving forward.
Ways to Connect Further With Carly
If you’ve enjoyed reading about this topic then make sure you check out my website where you can find lots of prompts and free resources.
I also hang out a lot on Instagram and YouTube where you can find some Journal with Me videos and we can journal together.