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Art Journaling: 5 Themes for November

by Lauren Fallat, LPC LPAT ATR-BC

November is a time for reflection – a time to take a step back and assess all that has happened in the past few months. November is a month of change and new beginnings. It's a time to reflect on the past and look ahead to the future, a time to set goals for the coming year and make plans to achieve them. This is also a great time to start a new journaling practice!

No matter what your plans are for the month of November, it's always a good idea to set some goals and get organized. This is especially true when it comes to your personal journaling practice. This creative approach involves combining images, text and other elements to create a visual diary of your thoughts and experiences.

If you're looking for a little inspiration, here are some collage journaling themes to help get you started:

1. Gratitude. This is the perfect time to reflect on all that you're grateful for. There are endless ways to approach gratitude journaling. Gratitude is one of the most powerful emotions, and it can have a profound impact on your happiness and well-being. Start your journaling by making a list of everything you're thankful for, big and small.You could keep track of moments that made you happy or that promote a feeling of satisfaction and joy when you think about a particular experience or interaction. You could also try creating a collage that captures your gratefulness in pictorial form. Consider new or old traditions or rituals that contribute to your sense of gratitude and how you might highlight them in a journal entry through words or images.

2. Fall foliage. Capture the beauty of autumn in all its glory with pictures of leaves, trees, and pumpkin patches. Brown, orange, red, yellow, and all the shades in between make for a beautiful autumnal palette. Add in some leaves, acorns, and other assorted fall foliage to complete the effect. Collect leaves and other objects to represent the changing seasons.

3. Celebration. Start planning for your December festivities by creating themed pages for Christmas, Hanukkah, and New Year's Eve.

4. Memories. Scan in or take photographs of your favorite memories from the past 10-11 months. Create a scrapbook-type layout with a variety of images and ephemeral objects to highlight particular moments that stand out as significant or memorable. Consider memories with family, friends, school, work, travel and new or revisited places. Whether it's a trip to a new city, a night out with friends, or simply time spent with your loved ones, it's important to document and savor the moments that make life worth living. Consider incorporating words in the form of song lyrics, poems, or quotes that capture an essence or feeling from a particular memory.

5. Reflection and Recalibration. November is an ideal time to reflect back on the past 10 months and consider themes that have come up throughout the year. Consider any major transitions you have experienced, losses or gains, accomplishments or challenges and milestones achieved or pending. Allow yourself to make note of these reflections and create a spread in your journal of your hopes for the upcoming year, with goals and steps that you might take towards those goals. Consider images and words that are motivational or inspirational.

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