One benefit for maintaining a journal is having the opportunity to review some past entries. Consistent journaling and maintaining journals for almost 20 years has provided me with this luxury. I don’t get to do this quite often since I’m not one who enjoys dwelling upon the past. Sometimes I can find myself distracted just going through the many pages that represent my life’s history, and have done so on a few occasions.
At the beginning of the year 2015, I made a commitment to enhance my personal growth and development. I’ve spend some quality time reading introspective literature and completing writing assignments from books like John C. Maxwell’s the 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, Brendon Burchard’s the Motivation Manifesto, and Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. These tasks have made me more conscious about the person I am and desire to become, especially as a writer. It’s important for anyone invested in personal development to spend some time reflecting upon one’s progress to evaluate strengths and areas of need for improvement.
This past weekend, I came across an assignment I wrote when I was reading Julia Cameron’s the Artist’s Way called the Artist Prayer from last summer in August 2014. The reader was required to create his or her unique “artist prayer” for meditation and review to enhance one’s creativity. My prayer expressed my gratitude for the Creator to bless me with my creative talents and my desire to continue making a positive difference in my life and also others. I was satisfied with what I originally wrote nine months ago, but my prayer doesn’t capture my current thoughts, feelings, and desires. I took some time this weekend to revise my artist prayer so that it’s more current and updated. I also plan to meditate and read my statement as a daily reminder for staying motivated to write, just like I did when I participated in doing the assignments from the Artist’s Way. Here’s my revised artist prayer:
Thank You for allowing me to witness the sunrise of another blessed and beautiful day. Thank You for loving and being so good to me in spite of myself. Thank You for being the foundation of my strength and inspiration. Thank You for bestowing me with an amazing talent that allows me to express my ideas and feelings, which I can employ to make a positive difference in someone else’s life.
As I’m composing this letter to You, my Creator, I feel very special and honored for all I’ve accomplished with my creativity. I’ve explored various creative forms during my life but none bring me greater joy than writing. I could spend hours engaged in this activity, just sitting down at my laptop on my living room sofa in my home; traveling to a nearby park in the spring or the summer with my journal in a cool place; or visiting a coffee house or book store sipping on some green tea or hot chocolate with either instrument. Writing has presented me with various opportunities to not only grow as a writer, but also as a poet, an author, and a creative writing instructor. It has connected me with some like-minded individuals who became my extended family and inspired me to be a better artist and a human being. It gave me much needed confidence and self-esteem I never thought I would possess to overcome my shyness. It has been my therapy throughout all of my experiences and my favorite self-care strategy to manage my mental health. None of those feats would have been possible without You, my Creator.
I was born to be a writer. Writing is more than my passion; it’s an essential function of my life like eating, breathing, and sleeping. Sometimes I take this gift for granted due to my arrogance, insecurities, distractions, and other negative reasons. I have no one to blame but myself for my failures and shortcomings. I do ask You to please forgive me for my shortsightedness when I’m not utilizing my talents. When I’m not using my creativity, I dishonor You, my Creator, and also myself.
I am proud of the writer that I am and will become as I continue to pursue my literary aspirations. I feel that I’ve yet to tap into my true potential to really express my creativity. I’m planning to enter a new phase of my journey that will enhance my personal growth and development, which will affect my creative endeavors. There will be some risks associated with this journey, challenging my talents and confidence. There will also be some unknown territories I will explore for the first time. Those thoughts do frighten me sometimes but I will not allow it to negatively impact my ability to take consistent action. I’m more frightened by not taking the risks and to succumb to living a regretful, mediocre life of playing it safe by wasting my talents just to exist instead of thriving. All I ask of You, my Creator, to provide me the courage, the wisdom, and the guidance necessary to begin and to complete this creative and spiritual journey.