The Book of Extraordinary Things

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"We do not need magic to transform the world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already. We have power to imagine better." - J.K. Rowling

I so, so excited to share with you a project that I have been working on for the past 6 months. I have actually been sharing a little over on Instagram and the LWW Facebook Community but I also wanted to make an official announcement here on the blog.

I have created a daily journal called “The Book of Extraordinary Things” (BET) with prompts to inspire self-awareness, positivity, and well-being. The BET was made for the introspective adventurer and was designed to evoke a sense of wonder about our daily lives. I was personally inspired by the fantasy tales of ordinary individuals accomplishing extraordinary feats and the books and scripts that hold these tales.

The Book is extraordinary because we, as humans, are extraordinary. The book is alive because we are alive. Each high and low, victory and defeat, and all the spaces in-between are opportunities for the author to decide how their story will be written.

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Journaling has always been a habit that I’ve wanted to include in my daily routine, but, even as a creative, I have been overwhelmed with how much time it may take. I personally wanted something that I could use that would have prompts built in and also include some free space. Structure for guidance and flexibility for creativity. It was also important that this project be aesthetically pleasing to my right brain- the result being something that you might find in a rare books collection, on a shelf at Hogwarts, or in the well-worn bag of an explorer. 

The first section of the BET is comprised of a set of exploratory questions which were designed to support the author in creating a detailed picture of where they are beginning their quest. There is also a blank space to bring visons, goals, and dreams to life. Following the self-reflective questions, there is a section for short, medium, and long-term goal setting. These questions ask the author to describe what they might like to be celebrating in three months, six months, and one year.

The daily journal pages are composed of three parts. First, there are a series of 5 prompts that are based around the PERMA model in positive psychology- Positivity, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Achievement. Although there is not a specific prompt for Vitality, there is blank space to create a tracking method for physical metrics such as water intake or daily movement. Below the prompts is a space to track your mood. The daily journal pages are intended to last for three months. On a page facing the prompts there is a blank section entitled “Field Notes.” This space is for authors to use for drawing, writing, collaging, or tracking. Below the “Field Notes” there is a structured “To-Do” list. The “To-Do” list area is made up of the top three most important quests of the day and subsections for AM and PM tasks. The final section of the BET consists of several blank “Field Notes” pages for authors to use for notes, projects, artistic endeavors, to-do lists, or anything else for which they might need room to create.

I firmly believe that there is a kind of everyday magic in both the ordinary and extraordinary. I hope that the BET can be a container for this magic and a creative outlet for the authors who wield it.  

                                                                                                                                     the book of extraordinary things 1.0

                                                                                                                                     the book of extraordinary things 1.0

The book is currently in a prototype phase as I work on final content edits and layout adjustments. In addition to the journal, I am developing stickers to enhance creativity and Quest Cards- a deck of cards with small, additional quests to build courage, confidence, curiosity, hope, and resilience. The final version will have a black vegan leather or linen cover with gold foil. It will also include a ribbon and pocket in the back cover (perfect for holding your Quest cards, receipts, pictures, etc.) In order to bring the BET experience to life, I will be running a Kickstarter campaign sometime during the fall of this year (September/October). For more information and updates on the Book of Extraordinary Things, you can follow me over on Instagram, Facebook, or sign up for the Living Well and Wild Monthly Newsletter.

 

 

You Deserve Self-Care


Self-care is the time/energy/space we give ourselves to recharge spent internal "batteries". These are the things that bring us joy and give us back the energy we need to fulfill our daily responsibilities. Self care also has the power to help us build our mental and emotional resilience. 

So with all of these benefits, why wouldn't someone make self-care part of their routine? 

The biggest challenges I have seen (and experienced personally) are time and societal pressure. And to some, self-care might seem selfish-  which is definitely not true!

I know it can be difficult to find (or make) the time for self-care activities (which could mean doing nothing at all!). I have often looked down at my daily schedule and wondered when I will be able to catch my breath. Take a moment to think about the last time you scheduled 15-30 minutes for yourself to just BE. This could be in the morning before work, after the kids have gone to bed, or during lunchtime. I know this self-care time might be a luxury for some, but I encourage you to really look at your schedule to see when you might be able to find 15 minutes, if not once a day, then maybe once every other day.

Societal pressure can be challenging too. So many of us have taken to using "busy" as a badge of honor. If your day isn't packed from the time you wake up until the time you go to bed, you must be slacking. Self-care activities are sometimes seen as indulgent or time wasting. 

In reality, by engaging in self care, we can contribute to our well-being, increase our ability to handle difficult situations, and better support others when the need arises.

If you are not currently engaging in self-care, take a minute to imagine what it would look like. Imagine what you would do, when you could do it, and what might be different about your life if you were able to carve out that time for yourself. You deserve it.

If you're looking for a way to get started, here is a list of 10 free self-care activities: