Using the Weekly Pages
Getting Started - The Weekly Pages
Plot Your Priorities
Plot your three main priorities for the week and when appropriate, mark the day during which you plan to accomplish this priority.
There is only so much we can get done in a day. To make meaningful progress, we must focus with sustained attention over a longer period of time. By laying the groundwork and creating a plan of action you will be on your way to making a tangible impact in your life and environment.
Grow As An Individual
We are all looking for that next ‘right’ step, that next opportunity to live out our true purpose in life.
Use your weekly pages to describe the personal growth that you wish to focus on over the next 7 days.
Grow Your Relationships
Often the regrets of the dying have little to do with accomplishment and everything to do with relationships.
Even so, there is a natural pull towards our own goals and agendas. It is important to take a step back and look at the big picture to see how we are improving the relationships that matter most to us.
If we aren’t mindful, it’s easy to let our relationships slip. And by focusing on and investing in our relationships, we will naturally thrive in other areas of life, as well.
The life of a monk is not a life of pure solitude, it is a life of community. It is through community and relationship where most of our insight, meaning, support, and growth comes from.
Broaden Your Perspective
We gain new insights when we change our perspective. As you fill out your weekly reflection pages, go back through your daily pages for the past 7 days. Take time to embrace potential insights as you review each page.
Ask yourself a few questions:
Is there a trend in the things that aren’t getting done or the things that are?
Is there a trend in the times when you felt unrest?
What types of highlights do you tend to mention?
What do the answers to each of these questions tell you about yourself and what is going on in your life?
Reflect on Meaningful Moments
Think back to any period of time, and it’s likely that you are left with only two predominant memories.
1: A general impression of who you were and how you felt during that time. There is an emotional and personal imprint from your experience that you carry with you.
2: A series of moments. If you think back on a year of high school the majority of your experience has blurred, but you still retain a few key memories of specific moments. These moments are often filled with specific insights or meaning.
Similarly, as you review each week, you will find certain moments will stand out in your memory. Write those moments down. Don’t worry about if these are the right or wrong moments, chances are if they are standing out it is only because something about them is meaningful.
By the end of the month, you’ll be amazed by the meaningful moments you recorded and the insights you can gain by the story they tell.
See and Hear the Sacred
How we react to the word “God” tells us a lot about what our image of God is. Each of us have an image of God, and all of our images, on some level are are inadequate to the reality of what God actually is. If a picture is worth a thousand words, something as big as the Divine doesn’t cleanly fit into simple words or language.
Our image of God is a result of our upbringing, our environment and our experiences.
Relationships can function like mirrors, and our relationship with our Higher Power is the most powerful mirror we have for personal insight and wisdom.
Over time as we reflect on our experience we not only gain a clearer image of God, but also a clearer image of ourselves.
Find One Way to Improve
The path to the full life is a marked by change.
Along this path as we strive to live with greater purpose and intentionality we can take regular inventory of what we do well and where we may need to grow.
Each week, take time to reflect on one simple way you can improve the following week. These small weekly steps will steadily move you in the direction of your true purpose.
Embrace Rest and Leisure
Remember to be kind to yourself. Many of us have been taught that our worth is tied to our output and utility. But we are not robots, we are human beings.
As humans we need time for rest, play and connection. Make a conscious effort to include time in your week to feed the spirit, mind and body.
There is no “wrong way” to fill in your pages. That said, here are some step-by-step instructions for filling in your weekly pages.
We recommend having your Monk Manual in hand as you follow along the steps.
Weekly Pages: How to Prepare
PRO TIP: Do this on Saturday or Sunday right after you reflect on the previous week
Step 1: Denote the dates of the week in the top left corner
Example: Sun, Dec 30, 2018 - Sat, Jan 5, 2020
Step 2: List your 3 top priorities of the week, and if applicable, circle the day(s) of the week you will work on them
Example: “Spend time with John” or “Finish December report”
Step 3: List major to-do’s for the week and note when you’d like to accomplish each task
Example: “review finances (Fri)” or “call Steven (Wed)”
Step 4: Describe the personal growth you’d like to see over the course of the week
Example: “Train on pace each day” or “Read for The War of Art 20 mins each day” or “Practice patience” or “No digital devices on Sunday”
Step 5: Describe how you would like to grow your relationships this week
Example: “Date night with John with no phone” or “Spend carefree time with the kids 4 nights this week”
Step 6: Think of 3 things, events, or people you’re looking forward to
Example: “Seeing Maggie on Monday” or “Getting more sleep each night”
Weekly Pages: How to Reflect
PRO TIP: Do this on the last day of your week
Step 1: Take a moment to read through your weekly and daily pages.
Step 2: Fill in your habit tracker in the top right corner
Example: Check off each day you used the daily pages of the Monk Manual this week
Step 3: List your biggest accomplishments (don’t overthink this)
Example: “reconnected with my old friend, Erin” or “signed Company ABC as a new client”
Step 4: Reflect on your habit. Think of the days you did or did not follow through
Example: It’s easy to use the MM each day, so I just have to do it. If something is easy to do, it means it is also easy to not do it.
Step 5: Reflect on the meaningful moments that happened this week
Example: “John got an A” or “Karen called about working together on the X,Y,Z project”
Step 6: Reflect on what God, your Higher Power, is trying to teach you
Example: To keep moving forward even when things don’t go according to plan
Step 7: Think of just 1 small way you can improve next week
Example: Don’t pre-plan events for Sunday next week. Just prepare for a day of carefree fun and rest with the family
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