I’ve dabbled in journal writing on and off since I received my first diary with the little gold lock and key as a young child. Those first journal entries were stories of my day to day life. As I grew the journals weren’t as fancy, but they became a combination of stories of my life and my feelings. Now that I am an adult, I have journals in every shape and form. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I kept a journal for her in the hopes I would have something to pass on to her when she was grown showing her what life was like before she was even born.
Journals can be kept as a legacy, giving glimpses into our everyday life. They can give us insight into feelings and emotions. Journals can even help express creativity. There are so many different ways to journal. Don’t feel like you need a fancy looking journal. Any old notebook will do. I actually do most of mine now in a word processing program because I can type faster than I can write. The important thing here is just to sit down and write.
Here are 6 different ideas to help you get started journaling:
A friend of mine introduced me to writing a blessing journal. Basically all you do is each day you write down one blessing that you have or one thing that you are thankful for in your life. These kinds of entries can be short and simple. The benefit of a blessing journal is that you have at your disposal a list of all the things that make you feel blessed. So, when life gets you down, or you have a particularly bad day, you can go back to it and read the entries to help you realize that things might not be so bad. A blessing journal also forces you to think of something to be thankful for on those rough days.
This type of journal was recommended to my daughter by her therapist. She has ADHD, and struggles in school. As you can imagine, it causes her a lot of stress. The therapist suggested that she take a small notebook to school and write down any negative feelings she had whenever she had them. The idea is that writing it down will help release pain, frustration, and negative emotions like anger and fear. It’s a great place to complain with no worry of repercussions, and it really does help sort things out in your head.
Journal for your kids
I love the idea of having a journal to pass on to my kids. I envision being able to hand them a journal of their life on their graduation or wedding day. What a priceless gift. For different ideas on how to journal for your kids take a look at the hub “Using Creative Journal Writing to Preserve Your Child’s Memories.”
Want to leave a legacy to your family? Write a journal of your day to day life. This is journal writing in its simplest form. Just sit down, pen and paper in hand, and write about your day…or your week…or just about anything that has been going on in your life. Just think how exciting it could be for your grandkids to get a glimpse into grandma’s life of years ago.
Recently return from a great vacation? Write a tale of your adventure. Delve into the sights, smells, or characters you met along the way. It’s fun to do this kind of journaling in the third person because it really seems like you are telling a tale. Even the most mundane outings can turn into epic story once you get your creative juice flowing. Instead of writing “I went to the store today” you can tell the story of the crazy lady in front of you at the check-out with a gaggle of kids in tow who was still in her pink bunny slippers. You can describe how she was trying to buy a cart full of silk flowers with an expired credit card…yes, this has happened to me.
You like to journal, but your entries seem to be dull and mundane even to you. You wonder at times what the point is of writing them at all. You are learning nothing about yourself. Try something new and answer some thought provoking questions. The link below contains 365 questions you can ask yourself. Exploring these kinds of questions can help you know yourself better. Pick a question and write it down in your journal, and then answer it.
All of the questions on the site really do make you think:
- What’s something you do different than other people?
- What is the difference between ignorance and innocence?
- What are three moral rules you would never break?
- What is your earliest childhood memory?
- What would you do with a million dollars?
I also love the site “Thought Questions.” This site posts a question a day to answer. Their motto: “Asking the right questions is the answer.”
There you have it… 6 great ways to help you start journaling. Writing is a powerful tool and can uncover lots of emotions. It can unleash your silly side. It can help you document your life. It can help you tell a story. So sit down and start writing.
Kathy Hull (author) from Bloomington, Illinois on April 02, 2013:
You are quite welcome Kellykh, I hope you get the chance to use some of these creative journal writing ideas.
Kellykh on March 30, 2013:
Thank you so much for all the helpful tips on journal pages to create. I really would like to start a journal, I have a really hard time setting by myself, I always feel like I need to be doing something.
Kathy Hull (author) from Bloomington, Illinois on September 12, 2012:
I really do love the Thought Provoking Questions. It gives me a topic to write about and usually turns out giving me a bit of insight on how I feel.
Cheryl Simonds from Connecticut on September 09, 2012:
I have tried on and off as well to keep a journal, but my writing hands don't work too well anymore and I also type faster than I write. I think I will check out your 365 Thought Provoking Questions to ask yourself this year link and the thought questions link as well. Thanks for sharing.