I’ve always loved the idea of journaling more than journaling itself. I have a weak spot for beautiful notebooks and smooth-writing pens. With the countless well-known benefits of journaling (less stress, better relationships, higher awareness, more motivation, success and joy, just to name of few) it’s something I keep coming back to.
As a child, my journal was homework for Japanese school, recounting the events from the day. As a teen, my diary was mostly rants and venting about the dramas of life. Since then, I’ve kept journals on and off for gratitude, travel, brain dumps and so on.
What I’ve learned over the years of attempting to keep a consistent journal is there is no right way or wrong way to do it. And, you can change your journaling method based on what would serve you most at that moment.
Here are some of my favorites:
- Gratitude Journal: This is an easy practice to have more abundance and appreciation in your life. Gratitude motivates and creates energetic shifts to bring about positive change. See my bog post for more details: Does Gratitude Make You Lazy?
- One-line Journal: When life feels like it’s flying by, this is a super simple method to capture one insight or funny moment from your day.
- 5 Minute Journal: The Five Minute Journal method is based on positive psychology and is about living life intentionally.Yep, there’s even an app. Not surprisingly, the practice of gratitude is built right in.
- 20 Minute Journal: The 20 minute journal is a practice for gaining new insights and perspectives on life. When you set a timer for 20 minutes and commit to write about something that is bothering you or need clarity on, the timer makes you stick with the idea past the point of where you otherwise would otherwise abandon the topic (usually less than 10 minutes). Pushing past this usual point of abandonment is like hiking up to a new vantage point where you can see things you’ve never seen before.
There are many other popular methods of journaling, such as scrapbook journaling, Julia Cameron’s Morning Pages, and fitness and success journals.
Start with a notebook you love (or go digital) and choose one method that would most serve you today, and feel free to change it up as needed. I tend to stick to one method for a period of time, but will pull in others to keep things interesting and fresh. Most important is to have fun and enjoy it!