26 Adventures & Me

tips for starting a journal

How to Start Journaling

Each Sunday, I give you a journal prompt in Instagram to help you with your self-discovery journey. It occurred to me that some of you may appreciate some suggestions on how to start journaling (or remember to do it.) 

Journaling is a fantastic way to dig deep and get things out. Sometimes we need to journal to remember the positive. Other times, to dismiss the demons or forgive ourselves. I often journal to figure out what direction I need to head next. 

Getting started journaling isn’t something that you need to think about too hard. Yes, there are numerous types and styles of journals and ways to do this that may or may not be more effective depending on your goals, but you can simply get some paper and get started today.

start writing in journal quote

* Dust Off Your Pen and Paper – You don’t need anything special to keep a journal. An old-fashion spiral notebook works just fine. There is something about the act of physically writing versus using a computer to help you get your true thoughts out. 

* Do It First Thing in the Morning – Don’t procrastinate about keeping your journal. It’s best to do it in the morning before you begin your day so that you have the right frame of mind for the day. Plus, you only need five to ten minutes, so it’s not that big of a deal. 

* Do It Last Thing at Night – Another time to do it is before bed. This works especially well for gratitude journals. That way you can go to sleep thinking about all the things you are grateful for instead of things you’re worried about.

* Write Every Single Day – Whenever you choose to do it, try to set it up so that it becomes a ritual and a habit. Journaling every single day is going to be more effective than just doing it when you feel like it.

* Start Simply – Don’t start being worried about style and substance right now; just work on the daily habit with pen and paper. Don’t make it hard or think you need to write a ton – just get going.

* Begin with Today – Start right now and write about your day today. That’s the easiest thing to do. What of significance happened today? How did you feel about it? What would you do differently? What would you do the same? 

* Try Different Types of Journals – Once you develop the habit, you can start trying different types of journaling like a bullet journal, or a vision journal, or maybe even a project journal for your next project. 

* Keep It Private – The main thing to remember about your journal is that it should be kept private. The only exception is if you want to share thoughts with a therapist, counselor, or coach. Or if you want to turn it into a book or course, to help someone else overcome whatever you overcame.

Keeping a journal will help you deal with the things that happen to you as well as the things that have not happened to you.

The main reason is that writing it down helps you remember what you did right and what you did wrong. It helps you improve your decision-making capacity for similar situations. The main thing is just to get started journaling in any way that works for you.

Be on the lookout for next Sunday’s prompt on Instagram

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