Hey, warriors! How are you doing today? I’m excited, since I get to talk about a big change I recently made in my life in today’s post! I’m going to tell you the reasons I journal, show you my journal, and give you my best journaling tips. Let’s dive in!
Why I Journal
On May 18 this year, I made a choice. I was already planning on launching my blog on May 20th, the nine year anniversary of the tornado that changed my young life, so, after reading an inspirational magazine(don’t judge ok? Magnolia Journal is helpful) I decided to call the day my new year. Kaley’s New Year. You may already know the details of that from this post on my private blog (sorry if I don’t let you in; it’s private for a reason. Still, I might if you request it.) but one of the changes I decided to make was to start journaling.
So I did; on May 19th I was so excited I wrote an introduction and from May 20th on I’ve written an entry every day possible. I try to start each day with the date, a word of the day, and the time my first entry starts. Inside I list what needs done and, at the end of my day, I recap just a little and rate my day. Some days I’ve had insanely short entries and skipped several parts but I’ve tried my best to write one every day. I’ve only missed two days this far and I’m at over 50 pages.
But why do I journal? Because I need to be freely confined. I need a plan each day, but I also love to be creative and able to do whatever I feel like doing. I have certain things that need done, but I also try to have fun and chill time. I journal to remember, to mark my growth. I journal to process what’s happening to me and I journal to vent feelings and thoughts I just don’t need in my way. I journal to figure out why I’m doing what I’m doing and I journal to figure myself out. It’s been amazing.
A Peek in My Journal
Here’s a snippet of my journal…. It might not all make sense and it might be a little weird but it’s who I am. I like it. (Click on the pictures to see them better.)
So You Want To Journal?
- Here are some things to keep in mind if you journal or want to start journaling:
- Journaling isn’t hard! You don’t need to write five pages every day. Last night I wrote less than five sentences. That’s fine! If you need to skip a day, don’t beat yourself up. It’s okay.
- You don’t need a fancy journal. I’m using a fairly small one that fits in my back pack by Soul Scripts, my favorite journal brand, but it was a gift. Any journal works fine!
- Try and make a set time to journal each morning and evening if you can. It’s good to start the day with goals and end with reflection time. But if you only have ten minutes to journal a day and it’s at lunch time, that’s still fine!
- If you didn’t notice, journaling is forgiving. Why? Because a book can’t talk back and it’s whole job is to help you learn and grow into a healthier, stronger, wiser person. It isn’t very healthy or wise to beat yourself up.
- I love to start each entry with a word and its definition when possible because it gives me something to think about as I dive into my day.
- I also love to end the day with a rating and a short bit about why I rated it that way. It shows me what I like and what I don’t like and I get to know myself even better.
- A journal with blank spaces for page numbers is amazing because you can fill them in as you reach them. It’s so thrilling to realize, “hey! I’ve written twenty pages!”
- Be honest with yourself. Some days aren’t good days and you don’t need to pretend they were. But often, bad days have some highlights. Don’t drop the good all together, but know that there’s a little light even in the rain and that it’s going to rain sometimes.
- I took notes from a conference in my journal at one point and wrote twenty pages in two days. Your journal doesn’t just have to be for to-do lists and reflections. It holds anything and everything!
- I try to bring my journal with me when I go places because sometimes you need to calm down even in public and a journal is a place for silent ranting. It’s also a continuous check-list with things you need to do and things you want to do, as well as dates of when things happened. It’s a great thing to have on hand at any time.
- A journal is great inspiration and practice for authors, too! If you keep one, don’t slack on your writing skills because this is a place where you want to put words on a page daily. Make it worth it!
I hope this post was helpful! Do you journal? Do you want to try? What journals do you like? How do you journal? Let me know in the comments!