How to Journal



Although there is no set formula or way to journal as it is a personal voyage, there are ways to keep you on track and overcome obstacles. Try to write every day whether it is one line or 3 pages, just write. Write about whatever is bothering you, what is on your mind, how your day went, what emotion is the strongest with you at that moment, whatever. When you get stuck, try free writing… It will loosen you and help your mind relax. If free writing is not your thing or you can’t even free write at the time, try writing about gratitude.

Writing about gratitude will help you focus and relax, even when all hell breaks loose in your life. Just try to think of things you are grateful for that instant. List them one by one… Try to come up with as many as you can, but aim for a minimum like three.

  1. I am grateful I’m still alive.
  2. I’m grateful that I have a friend in my cat.
  3. I’m grateful I’m not homeless.

See, just the basics are good enough… Just the facts mam!

Writing each and every day will help build a habit… Strong habits will help you follow through when things fall apart or when you feel lazy and want to nap instead of your three grateful things routine if it’s that bad. If you’re still having trouble, set a schedule and try your best to stick to it. You can write whenever, wherever you like!

Remember: Just Write!

You can write in the morning, afternoon, or in the evening just before bed. You can write at all three times or any other time you want, Just Write! Find a time convenient to yourself, even if you want it to be random! Remember, there are no hard, fast rules to journaling, but if needed for encouragement try a rigid schedule.

Find some place you are comfortable in and willing to open up. If mental illness is a thing, journaling in public is probably taboo, like with me. I’m usually cloistered, but find that I can write in public even if people seem to know what’s going on… I journal those thoughts and emotions about journaling in public and later review them in private… It helps overcome agoraphobia, for example.

If where you journal doesn’t suit you, change locales… Try a different watering hole, a different sweet spot to understand why it didn’t work… Keep moving on if there is still trouble. Try a different place in your home if there is more than one chair, switch it up. Try a different window, a different room… Just try different if you can’t get out.

Speaking of different, try different techniques if your journal is stagnating. Try a fresh approach… Just write! Write about your day, write about lunch if needed… Just write! Keep a ready-made list of writing prompts on hand to draw from.. The three good things in life that I’m grateful for approach is one for me.

Finally, while writing, remember to reflect yourself… What you are… How you feel… Even what you want to become. Let the words you write reflect your personality and you can review it later to see if you were pissed off, calm and relaxed, or even joyful. It is not always clear when you write how you feel. Pay close attention to the language you use. For example, I swear more in my journal when I’m mad.

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