The new moon refers to the 2-3 day period in which the moon goes dark before re-emerging. It symbolizes the ending of one cycle and the beginning of another. As such, we can utilize this energy to begin new cycles of our own and release that which no longer resonates with us. We can use this on a large scale to set major life goals, but also on a smaller scale, to set intentions and action items that help us work towards those larger goals.
I highly recommend keeping a moon journal to track both your new moon intentions and full moon accomplishments. This doesn’t need to be anything fancy, just a standard notebook dedicated to writing new moon journal prompts (see below) for setting intentions and full moon journal prompts (see previous post here) to celebrate and anchor in your accomplishments.
Now let’s get into the journal prompts that will help guide you in utilizing the powerful new moon energy.
Reflection: Review the past month from a neutral point of view. What did you experience, what did you feel, what did you accomplish, where did you fall short or struggle? Don’t assign meaning to any of these things, simply observe. Its not good or bad that you didn’t walk 10k steps every day last month; it simply is. And observing from a neutral space allows you to evaluate obstacles, the importance of those goals and the shadows within you that may have held you back. Maybe 10k steps wasn’t realistic because of the weather and now you can adjust that goal to better fit your environment. Or maybe you prioritized spending time with friends and family above reaching that goal. That may be a good or a bad thing, but the point is to be honest with yourself so you can refocus your intentions. Maybe now 10k steps isn’t the real goal; maybe now the goal is to learn to say no when people ask you to put them above your own goals. Again, it’s not good or bad, it’s just insight into yourself.
Release: Allow the dark (shadow self, reflected as the dark side of the moon) to be present, surround it with love and lovingly release it to create space for new energies to enter. Reflect on the past month: What bad habits do you still have that you want to end? What attachments showed up that you want to let go of? What fears held you back that you still need to release? Give thanks to those habits, attachments and fears for serving whatever purpose they had in your life, even if you don’t understand what that purpose may have been. And now you can release them from a place of love. Don't get mad at others or even yourself for not accomplishing a goal, simply make the conscious decision to release the energies that held power over you.
Gratitude: Give thanks to everything good in your life, everything that taught you a lesson and everything that helped you grow. The beginning of a cycle is not the time to wallow and dwell in our pain. Give it space and release it and now focus on the positive. For as much struggle as we face, there is also good that we may not have even noticed. Spend time reflecting on the past month and finding all the good; whether it’s a blooming friendship, a new career opportunity or that one day where the weather was absolutely perfect. Searching for the good will train your brain to see the positive in any situation instead of always focusing on the negative. I promise there's at least a few things in the past month that were good, and that's worth celebrating.
Intention: Now it’s time to set some intentions or goals for the month ahead. What do you want to begin or continue working towards? These should be smaller goals that play into larger goals; like action steps that get you closer to those larger goals. If you have yet to set bigger intentions, the new moon is a perfect time to do that, but on a month to month basis, it’s best to set smaller goals that you can actually achieve within the month. You might not find your dream job in a month, but you can work on your resume, or take an online course to build your skills that will get you closer to that dream job. Doing these smaller action steps every month will give you a sense of accomplishment that will keep you motivated or give you clarity on your goals. Sometimes we don’t accomplish our goals because deep down it’s not something we actually want, we only think we want it. And that’s okay. Doing these journal prompts can help you identify those goals and redirect them if need be.
Regardless of your stance on whether or not moon energies are real (they are), doing these reflective journaling exercises every month will keep you honest with yourself and help you grow. So often we set our sights too high and can’t figure out why we can’t reach our goals. We never reflect enough to find the things that are holding us back. What if journaling one day a month could help you start making real progress towards the life you dream of? Would it matter that it’s some spiritual stuff you might not believe in?
Take the time every new moon to do these journal prompts because you deserve to make progress and actually have the life of your dreams.