Monday, April 11, 2016

A Guide to Journaling

I've pretty much always written in journals. I've always loved  moving my hand constantly even if it had no meaning and was just a lot of ranting about stupid, unimportant things. I even have some from when I was a miniature human! Well, those are the embarrassing ones. But I still regularly write in journals today! I wonder how long it will be until those are the embarrassing journals...
Do you write in a journal? WELL YOU REALLY SHOULD. Like, now.

1. It's a chance to calm down and think things through. Journaling can be a break from your day.

2. An easy a regular way to improve on your writing.

3. You can look back on it later, and you keep track of your progression through life.

4. You can finish journals and feel awesome. (That accomplished feeling.)

5. Journals are a place to vent without being judged and/or upset other people. Be as controversial as you so choose.

6. Remember things as they happen, without the misremembering and unreliability of your brain.

7. They're a place to write down random words you like and want to remember.

8. They're pretty and nice to look at. Like books. But personal. Personal books.

9. Boost your creativity without really trying. Just get out your journal when you're bored.

10. Be happier. (No, really.)

Personally, I work best when I have several journals for different things. What kind of things, you may ask?

1. A personal/diary-type journal. (I think this is pretty self-explanatory.)

2. A small one I carry around everywhere. Used for: cool words, ukulele chords, poems, things/lines I want to remember.

3. One for philosophical and political rants and ideas. I like to keep these all in one place!

4. One for more thought-out short stories or entire books sometimes. Sometimes I get annoyed with computers, and writing it down on paper (usually as well as typing it out later) helps me think.

If you do plan to get into journaling, I suggest you spilt up several journals for different things in whatever way works best for your interests.

1. GO BUY SOME JOURNALS! Preferably high-quality, pretty ones, but even just a spiral-bound notebook can work. For me, at least, I can't use anything other than a small, average book-sized, quality journals. Even if I spend $15 on it, it's worth it because I usually use them for months or even years depending on its use. Plus, it's not like I plan on getting rid of them ever. Might as well make them nice, right?

2. Create a routine. Many of you probably already have morning or night routines put into place. I suggest you squeeze a few minutes of journaling in there every night, especially if you don't usually have time during the day.

3. Take at least one journal with you. I prefer a pocket-sized journal with lines. (This is the one with the ukulele chords. It's just convenient.) Just like with reading books, taking a journal with you makes you much more likely to write something in it. If you wait until you get home or something, you'll probably forget or procrastinate or find something more important that needs done. Write things down right when you think of them!

4. Get new/awesome writing utensils. For me, getting shiny new pens is one of the best ways to get myself to write more. I'm always so excited to write with my new pens! Though it's very possible I just have a pen problem. I love my pens.

5. Make a special place on your headboard/nightstand/bookshelf for your new journals. I suggest somewhere that you look at often. This helps me remember to write at night. It also is just nice to have pretty journals right next to my face. I like staring at them. (What? Most of you probably smell books on a regular basis...!!)

But...wait. What should I journal about?

ANYTHING. It could be something important or mundane or funny or boring. Write what makes you happy or sad or angry or afraid. I say you should write as often and as detailed as you need to in order to put yourself on paper. Write about EVERYTHING that makes you you. Don't try to make your life seem perfect. Don't hold back. Write about things that make you feel something.

And most importantly, be as disorganized as possible.

Suggested things to write about:
  • Recent things that happened to you.
  • Funny stories.
  • Lines/words you want to remember or use again.
  • Random Ranting.
  • Poems.
  • Your sexuality. Or lack thereof.
  • Song lyrics. Or notes. Or chords. Whatever.
  • Books/movies you like.
  • Goals you want to accomplish.
  • Places you want to go.
  • Places you've been.
  • What you want to do with your life.
  • Religion/spirituality/lack thereof.
  • Your favorite people.
  • Why you think we're here.
  • Stuff that bothers you.
  • What you think is wrong with the world.
  • What you think is wrong with yourself.
  • Things you want to change.
  • What makes you cry.
  • Things you like to do.
  • People you like to see.
  • Your greatest fears.
  • What you think of death.
  • That burrito you had for lunch.
  • Things you wish would change.
  • Things you wish would stop changing.
  • Ideas about how the world could be better.
  • Your political views.
  • Your frustrations.
  • Things you wish were socially acceptable.
  • Food.
  • Short or long stories.
  • How you think our brains work.
  • Philosophy in general.
  • What you wish you could have.
  • Whether you think selfishness is okay.
  • What you wish you could give to someone.
  • People you think are stupid.
  • Etc.
Or anything you want really.

Do you write in a journal? Do you plan to? Was this post useful to you or change your view on journaling? Please leave your thoughts below!

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