Last July I bought my husband a Danielle LaPorte Desire Map Journal. I knew he’d love it. (He does). The thing is, the 2015 journals were limited edition and 50% off, so I did what every good wife would do: I bought myself the same one so we could ‘discuss,’ of course.
This journal is hella dope and it’s been incredibly transformational for me this summer. The premise is that instead of chasing daily/weekly or monthly goals we should chase feelings. Particularly, the core desired feelings you hope to experience when you get what you want. By identifying these core desired feelings it provides a potent form of clarity and by generating them, powerfully creative momentum in your life. This takes practice. Daily.
I identified my 6 major intentions for the rest of 2015 as:
- Finish writing a book. Any book will do.
- Tackle debt in a focused way.
- Organization at work that leads to success.
- Wholehearted, honest, vulnerable living within an appropriate inner-circle.
- Service & sacrifice on behalf of my children
- Be Grace. Be myself. No really, it’s okay, be yourself.
From there (I tried but failed) to write in the journal each day beginning with my core desired feelings. I realized after two months that I was struggling with daily consistency, but that even the little I had done was helping to focus my days. Not only was I taking on the typically overwhelming tasks with gusto, I was making the time to do that which led to the life I truly wanted.
Here’s my first 25 days of core desired feelings (over the course of two months).
“Today at my deepest core, I desire to feel…”
- Productivity. Hope. Gratitude
- Worth. Daughtership (to God). Intimacy. Gratitude. Belonging.
- Hope. To feel alive with creativity & advocacy. That I’ve made a difference.
- Brave. Bold. Heard. Respected. Empowered. Known. Loved.
- Successful. Driven. Productive. Appreciated. Purposeful. Worthy. Like I got ‘ish done.
- Resolve. Peace-filled. Known. That I gave love. That I’m receiving love. That my worth is not dependent on my usefulness. Forgiven. Worthy.
- Healing. Hope. Acceptance. Love. My okay-ness. Worth. Value. Intimacy.
- That I’m adulting well. That I’m handling my business. That I’m being Accepted, loved & valued. Peace.
- Peace. Productivity. Worth. Daughter-hood. Love. That I’m adulting well.
- That I have joy in service to others. That my wedding planning is nearly complete. Peace. Hope. Rest. Value.
- Hope. Joy. Productivity. Excitement. Mercy. Redemption.
- Peace. Hope. Wisdom. Healing.
- Productivity. No regrets. Love. Hope. Selfless creativity. Alive. Happiness.
- That I’m a hard work hustler. That I’m a reliable trustworthy friend. That I’m a financially healthy steward. That I’m In-sync & close to God. Peace. Hope. That I have no regrets.
- Peace with my life & my choices. Accomplished. Relaxed. Clean. Prepared for my wedding weekend.
- Awareness of the present moment. Gratitude. Focus. Energy.
- Hope. Joy. Peace. Happiness. Love. Honor. Self-care. (Day before our wedding)
- Gratitude. Community. Inclusion. Hope. Creativity. Productivity. Redemption. Love. Joy. (2 days after).
- Hope. Happiness. Love. Gratitude. That I’m a good Mommy and a supportive wife. Productive. Responsible. That I’m adulting well.
- I want to feel strong, that I pushed through my fears and uncertainties. That I did not waste time. That I’ve accomplished all my big rocks. That through my actions I love the Lord, my husband & our children.
- I want to feel at home with myself, that I love myself & that I own the love God has for me. As is.
- Energetic. Alive. Wise. Loved. Desired. Creative. Happy. Rested. Strong. Myself. Successful.
- Articulate. Gratitude. Hope. Peace. Forgiveness. Freedom. Successful. Respected. Loved.
- Powerful. Engaged with my children & finances. Empowered. Capable.
At the end of each month the journal ask you to reflect and sum up your core desired feelings. I realized with some sadness how often I’d articulated the core desire feeling of my worth. I realized with joy how often I wanted to feel –and often did feel– tremendous gratitude. I realized with great embarrassment how often I wanted to feel successful, something I’ve very rarely articulated out loud to myself much less others. I realized how much more I desired for each day than I’d previously imagined possible. With so much to live for, why not get busy?
During this monthly evaluation of sorts, the journal prompts you to focus on the positive aspects of the previous 30 days of nurturing your CDF’s (core desired feelings).
“These past two months I experience my CDF’s when I…”
…..made space to care for my body by running and taking long walks with my fiance’, which gave me energy and made me feel awake to my body’s need to move. (I drive quite a bit for work, so this feels all the more important nowadays).
…when I allowed space for reflection, particularly when I allowed myself the time to hand write it all out.
…when I allowed myself the space to mourn the pain I felt, to cry and to process everything without fear.
…when I made space to take & edit photographs, to write and to paint.
…when I consistently cleaned and attempted to get organized I felt as I’d conquered the world, even when those clean spaces lasted for such a short amount of time.
…when I made the space and time to connect with life-giving people and with my children.
…when I read books. I love books. Please remember that you love to read *actual* books.
…when I did consistent work-related tasks which led to successful projects.
From there the journal asks you to consider all of the aforementioned data and draft a few intentions and goals for the remainder of the year. I’m not sharing all of mine but here’s a few blog appropriate shares.
“With 3.5 months left I will…”
- Put small weekly efforts into the joint project my husband & I are launching, Everyday Black Matters.
- Regularly attend life-giving spaces (Church Sunday School class, etc.)
- Finish reading 3 books –beginning to end.
- Pursue personal space with the LORD regularly.
This journal woke me up from my comfortable blah-blah-standard-to-do-list slumber. It’s nudged me hard on my shoulder, reminding me to stay woke to the actions and intentions that give me the best life and the best shot at restoration. It’s affirmed in me what I all ready knew, there is profound hope and healing in the daily practice of gratitude.
For this book, and the beautiful life God is growing in me, I am thankful, I am thankful, I am thankful.