selfcare tips

How To Keep A Journal (And Why You Need One).

You know,there are so many thoughts that run through our minds everyday(more like every minute of the day😅); so many things that happen in our lives that we want to keep track of and memorable events that we want to keep alive in our heads;as well as ideas that we don’t want to escape our memory and emotions that we need to manage. So most times we find ourselves looking for something that effectively helps us to put everything under control without really taking so much from us….and a journal is a very efficient way to manage everything we have going on in our lives right now(a well kept journal that is).

We’ve all heard about journals, right? Those cute little notebooks where people write down their deepest and most private thoughts without fear of being judged by others, much like a diary except for one teeny little difference;diaries are usually for more personal purposes like keeping secrets while with a journal;it can be used for more than just one purpose as it has versatility on its side. However, I feel like I have to let you know that there’s more to journaling than just getting a pretty notebook and writing in it,like everything else in life there’s a certain process that needs to be followed if you want to keep a good journal;a process which I’ll be talking about in this post.

But before I share the steps for keeping a good journal, I’d love to give you a few persuasive enough reasons why you need to even start keeping a journal in the first place;

1.) Journals are a great way to process your thoughts and emotions: Writing about what you’re feeling or thinking about at a particular point in time helps you to process those thoughts and emotion so that you’ll be able to better understand them which will put you at an advantage when it comes to dealing with them.

2.) They are a nice outlet for creativity: Keeping a journal is a great way to let out your creative energy because not only does it allow you to tap into your inner creativity by letting your imagination run wild,but it also lets you express yourself in any form you please;be it a poem, a story, a painting, a drawing or a song,it all depends on you.

3.) It helps to improve your writing skills; Because keeping a journal involves so much writing,it’s bound to help you in improving your writing if you stick to it for a long while,mostly due to the fact that while writing in your journal,you’re constantly practicing the art of writing so yeah,over time it will show itself. It’s only natural😅.

4.) It allows you to express yourself without fear of being judged: If there’s anything people are afraid of;it’s being judged for anything at all,be it a personality trait,life choice or whatever. Luckily,your journal is about you so you’re more than express yourself however you choose without worrying about anyone else’s opinion.

5.) It helps you to address the things you’re going through; By writing about a certain issue you’re currently facing,you are actually addressing it by bringing it to your mind’s attention which makes you think about it and look for a way you can deal with it as well.

6.) Journals help you to keep track of your personal progress: When you go back to your past journal entries to reflect on them,you are able to see just how far you’ve come in life,which helps in boosting your confidence(because remembering the past challenges you overcame has a nice way of giving you strength).

7.) Keeping a journal can actually be quite therapeutic: Yes dear,having a journal where you can write down just how you feel and express yourself in anyway you want to is actually quite therapeutic,as it helps you to deal with an issue you’re going through(like maybe anxiety or recovery from a toxic situation). Fun facts,some therapists do recommend keeping a journal for their patients as it helps them manage their situations.

So yeah,these are just a few reasons why you should keep a journal. If the reasons I gave were convincing enough,then you’d most likely want to start keeping your own journal,however I must warn you that it’s only a good journal that comes with all those nice benefits. Now you might be asking yourself, “How do I keep a good journal?” Well I’ll give you a step by step guide on how you can do so:

1.) Where to write: Choose a notebook if you want to write by hand or a word processor or notebook app(like Google Docs) if you’d prefer using your computer or mobile device for your journal.

2.) Decide what kind of journal you’d like to keep: There are actually different types of journals out there and it’s your choice what kind of journal you want to keep. The most important thing to consider when deciding on what kind of journal you want to start is your reason for starting one in the first place. Do you want to write about your daily life and the things you face? Then you can start a personal journal. Do you have a certain issue you’re trying to manage? Then a therapy journal is fine for you. A gratitude journal is nice if you want to write about all the things you’re grateful for each day and an art journal is nice if you want to let out your artistic side. It all depends on you what kinda journal you choose to start. Note: It’s okay to have fun with your journal and be creative. You can also make a mix of two different journal types,for instance my journal is a mix

3.) Choose a topic to write about: It can be any topic,ranging from your daily life experiences to certain memories you’d want to reflect on,or a particular fear of yours you’d want to explore,or anything else you’d want to write about. Or if you don’t know where to start from,you can look for journal prompts on the Internet and use them for help. Or you can use the one I added here to start.

4.) Write the date of the entry at the top of your page: This helps you to remember the past events better as well as makes it easier for you when you go back to reflect on past entries. Plus there’s also the fact that writing the dates of your entries helps keep the journal organized.

5.) Begin with an opening like Dear Diary” or “Dear Self” and try personalising the journal: The opening helps to get the writing flowing and personalising the journal helps make it easier for you to open up your mind and pour out your thoughts into the journal,which is something you need to do in order for the journal to be good. (You can also name your journal if you like, I named mine Juliana).

6.) Be honest with yourself: When writing your journal entries try as much as possible to be honest with yourself and avoid self-editing your entries because that’s you lying to yourself which ruins the purpose of keeping a journal. So be honest with yourself,you’ll be glad you did. Also, you can get creative when it comes to your journal entries as it helps to keep it interesting. So you can write a poem,a short story or draw and paint in it. Basically you can do anything at all,it’s yours.

7.) Add detail: It’d be really nice if you add as much detail as you can to your entries to make them more vivid(bonus point if you add sensory details to make it more interesting and to help you remember the events better

8.) Don’t worry about the length of your journal entries: When it comes to your journal entries,the only thing you should be concerned about is letting out your feelings onto the paper,not how long or short they are. The length doesn’t matter so far as the entries are coming straight from the inside.

9.) Pick a convenient time to write and try to make it a routine: Try to find a writing time that works for you and work on adding it to your daily routine(if you’re up for it,try setting a goal to write an entry everyday).

10.) Carry your journal around with you: Carrying your journal around with you helps you with consistency as it allows you to write your entries whenever and wherever you are. However if you can’t carry your journal around then it’s best you leave it at home.

11.) Reflection Time: Whenever you feel like the time is right you can go ahead to read past entries and reflect on them. This helps to keep track of your progress and remind you of how far you’ve come.

12.) Keeping It Safe: Yes,this is a part of the steps involved,because the safety of your journal is important. Keep your journal in a convenient spot if you don’t need to hide it and in a case where you have need of keeping it hidden,then hide your journal in a secure spot that only you are aware of (in the case of a digital journal,a good password is enough to keep it secure).

So there you have it,everything you need to know about keeping a journal and the benefits involved. If you have any questions or you want to share something,I’d love to see it in the comments below,and if you’d like to receive updates on the next posts,then do follow the blog and stay tuned. Also,if you feel like you know someone who needs this,then go ahead to share it to them(I’d really appreciate that😅💜). So that’s it from me today loves,see you nex

Yours’ truly, Arreta🌺

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