How and Why You Should Make Journaling Part of Your Daily Routine
For as long as I can remember, I've always kept a journal or diary of some sort. I laughed as I read through some of my old diaries from when I was younger, I mainly talked about something that upset me or trying to figure out a guy I liked. But as I matured, journaling has been essential to my mental health. I have only recently begun to journal consistently and it has helped me to de-clutter my mind and help me see the bigger picture. I thought I would share how you can make journaling a part of your daily routine and how to get started writing.
Why you should start journaling?
It can help you process your thoughts and emotions.
Journaling is a very effective tool for self-reflection. Sitting down and putting pen to paper affords you the opportunity to slow down on life and search inward. It's a great way to explore your truth, question what drives you and understand your own attitude and behaviors. When you get the story out of your head and onto paper it is very liberating. Making a daily practice to write down how you are feeling is a great way to pinpoint patterns in your behavior and solve problems effectively. When keeping note of your emotions, it's important to make a practice of writing about positive experiences. The positive experiences will serve as an emotional anchor and a reference point when you are feeling hopeless.
It can help you stay organized.
If you're constantly trying to keep up with your daily demands, a bullet journal is a great way to get organized. It's like a note taking/list maker. You can keep track of everything from household chores to your daily to-do list. It's a central place to keep all of your bit's and pieces. Like journaling or a diary, a bullet journal goes a little deeper, it encourages you to stop and think, so it's a great place to organize your thoughts in a systematic way. Think about what you need to keep track of. When using the bullet journal there are a few things you need to consider like creating a key for what a symbol will represent, you want to remain consistent when using your symbols so it doesn't cause any confusion. Another item you want to consider adding is a monthly entry, this is a quick glance view of important dates for the month, it can be a calendar style view or a list. Then you want to break it down by weeks and then days. Once you find a good system that works for you, a bullet journal can be a great way to sit down and give yourself a few minutes to process what's going on in your life and how to be more intentional.
How can you start a journal?
A lot of people just don’t know where to start when it comes to journaling. I like to journal for a short period, I usually set a goal of 10 minutes a day. By reserving a set time you are more likely to make the routine. I like to journal while eating my breakfast in the morning. You can set a reminder in your phone to help you stick to a journaling habit and stick with a time that fit's your schedule. It can be on your commute to work (not if you're behind the wheel) or before you go to bed at night. It's also important to create the right journaling environment, the best way to record your thoughts is to minimize distraction. Our phones can be the biggest distraction. Try turning off your notification, or putting your phone on do not disturb.
A few journaling tips:
Pick your journaling tool
While writing don't edit yourself or edit your punctuation
Date each journal entry
Keep your journal in a safe place or on a privacy-protected mode if it's digital