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Cocooning-A Self Improvement Project

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I've been thinking a lot lately about self-improvement. Maybe it's because we are less than a month away from the New Year and resolution making and breaking. I've also been involved in a Bible study called The Truth Project.
This past week we watched Part IV and the leader talked about growing in our walk with God and changing and learning, etc. It was a lot deeper than that but he used the analogy of being in a cocoon and emerging and then entering another cocoon. And the process continues. This also made me think about growing in my spiritual life as one form of self-improvement. Again I considered how far I've come in my walk with God but what a continual process it is. I enjoy the idea of spiritual growth from cocoon to cocoon. Each year assessing where I've been and where I hope to grow.
A couple of my friends and I have been talking about some issues and challenges we face and have decided to do our own personal The Happiness Project. Of course Gretchen Rubin is the Author of the book. I was exercising today and started reading the book. "They say that people teach what they need to learn."  Gretchen states this as she discusses how she got started with her own project in the beginning of the book.

This made me think about my writing. I write Christian Fiction because it helps me stay in the Word. I explore personal issues as I write fiction. For instance, in my first novel, Secrets of the Heart, I'm really exploring 

2 Timothy 1:7...
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
 I learn and grow as I write and share my characters and stories. And then I get lost in the creative process and it's fun. Or I get stuck and it's painful. But just like growing in my faith walk, or my own little self-improvement journey, I see how I cocoon (emerge and then enter the next cocoon).

If you ever wanted to work on you there's also a fun book out there from the humorous Kathi Lipp titled, The Me Project 21 Days to Living the Life You've Always Wanted. The first chapter asks that all important question that has passed many of our lips, Is This All There Is?

There's lots of things I want to accomplish this next year; a lot of things I want to explore. Maybe I'll share some of those in January as we enter the New Year and I gain another birthday. :)

Right now I think I'm very much ensconced in my cocoon. Growing quite a bit and hoping to emerge again soon, show off my wings for awhile and then cocoon again. So where are you and what are you thinking about? Are you in a cocoon right now? Or have you just emerged with fresh insight that you are eager to share? If so, please let us know what you're discovering that might help the rest of us. 


  1. Jillian-

    One thing I have learned from this year is to prioritize!

    I complete my quiet time each morning before work by reading a devotional, the Bible, then praying for others. That always sets the tone for the day!

    To take care of "me", I exercise three times a week. I love running! It is my alone time...and it has kept me healthy and sane! But training for a marathon this year has really caused stress.

    So, I had to prioritize: marketing my book released this year, spending time with family, working fulltime, writing a YA Christian Fiction book, writing conferences, then training for a marathon.

    Something had to give!

    It was my back. Now I have to add "visit the chiropractor" to my list of things to do!

    So, the Lord said all those things you may do...but no marathon this year. For a runner, that's hard to accept. But I have 2 marathons under my belt, so no biggie. I will complete the 1/2 marathon this year instead.

    Thanks for the post and making me write down all that I do. I am exhausted just reading it!


  2. Hi Ruth,
    Sounds like you are really on the right track! :)Even though your doctor has nixed the 26 mile marathon a half sounds like plenty. You've got lots on your plate. Being able to prioritize is huge.

    I'm so glad you are taking care of you, it's not always easy to do and sometimes it's good to chat about these things: to figure out where we are at, what we need or want to do, and what direction we want to go.

  3. I don't know that I've ever separated growing from sharing, i.e. being in the cocoon & then sharing. Usually there are friends along the way that I share with as I'm growing & learning ...
    Mulling this post over, Jillian.
    I can see there have been definite times in my life when I was so busy walking through whatever season I was in that I did very little of "here's what I'm learning" ...
    Good post!

  4. Hi Beth,
    We all learn and grow in different ways. I hadn't really thought about the growth in the cocoon and then out again to share either until I started The Truth Project study which is a bit deep. :)But there's something about this cocoon stuff that fascinates me. I use to think of the metamorphosis process as a one time thing and now I'm learning that it can seen as a continual process. There may be a book here, and then again . . . :)

  5. Why am I reminded of snakes who continually grow, shedding their skin each time it is outgrown? Snake skins aren't nearly as cozy to think of as cocoons, but I guess the analogy continues. Life is a process of continual growth and I like how you've made a point of focusing on what kind of growth is important to you right now.

  6. Hi Carol,
    I hadn't thought about the snakes. Like you said, they aren't nearly as cozy to think about. :) But it is the same interesting concept. I like it, and it's giving me a story idea. :)