Monday, October 8, 2012

Tips for Journaling



Start small – Don’t set yourself up for failure. You don’t have to journal every single day. It’s okay if your journal entry is only a phrase or a few words. Consider getting into the habit of journaling by simply listing three things you’re thankful for before you go to bed at night.

Keep your journal close at hand – Where are you most likely to use your journal? If it’s in bed, keep it in your nightstand. If it’s in the car while you wait for your kids in the carpool line, keep it in the glove box.

Free writing – If you don’t think you have anything to say, just write the first thing that comes to mind, and don’t let your pencil stop. Let your subconscious take over. You’ll be amazed at how much it has to say. When I do this, my journal entry often turns into a prayer.

It’s about you – There is no wrong way to journal. It’s simply about having a creative outlet. Be open and flexible and let your own instincts take the lead. If your journal ends up being pages of sketches and doodles, that’s okay. If it ends up being a collection of meaningful quotes you’ve run across, that’s great. If it's a place for you to write down hilarious stories about your family, perfect.  Sometimes my journal is simply a place for me to list the things that are causing me to worry because writing them down helps me put them in perspective. 

Do you keep a journal? Would you like to? Do you love buying new journals as much as I do?

32 comments:

  1. Love this! It's so fun, because you can express all your creativity without any boundaries! Placing my prayers in journals has probably kept me alive in my journey :)

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  2. I stink at journaling! LOL -- I've tried ... I think my blog becomes a form of journaling. However, I LOVE journals. There's so many cool looking ones out there! I use them as notepads. lol

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  3. Like Jaime, I think my blog is my journal. And I LOVE journals. I have a moleskin journal that I write prayer requests in, and I have a little floral journal with an elastic closure that I write internet passwords and user names in, because I can never remember!

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  4. I keep art journals. There are a few going at any given time. Your tips are great whether for authors or artists.

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    1. I've seen some of your journals on your blog. Very cool!

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  5. Oh, and sometimes I like to make my own journals

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  6. I keep a prayer journal. I journal my prayers and it's just...very cathartic. I love it!

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    1. I agree. There is something freeing about getting them down on paper.

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  7. I do keep a journal. I do it exactly as your tips suggest. Sometimes, there's just a prayer, verse, or doodle...then sometimes, it's like I just poured out every emotion on to the page.

    Great post, Julie! and thanks for the prayers.

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    1. Anytime, Loree. I hope your knee and ankle are feeling better.

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  8. I'm a journal JUNKIE. I have so many and all of them are out of order and random. I finally started keeping ONE PER BOOK I'm writing. :-)

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    1. I'm with you. Mine are disorganized. I do have one committed to writing down things about my son. I started it when he was a baby.

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  9. Yes, I keep a journal. YES, I love getting new ones! I go through seasons where I don't journal as much, but right now I'm writing in it nearly every day. It keeps me sane sometimes.

    And I really like Jessica's idea of keeping one per book! I may have to try that. :0)

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    1. I go through seasons too. I seem to journal more right after I get a new journal. :)

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  10. Here's my confession--I love to buy new journals, but I rarely actually journal. I used to...religiously...but somewhere along the line I fell out of habit. I love your tip, though, about starting small. If I ever get back into the habit, that's how it's going to be. :)

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    1. I understand. It's hard to find time when there are books to write!

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  11. I don't journal, but we talked about it a lot at our church as a way to pray and keep track of how God works in our lives. Sadly, I haven't done it yet.

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    1. Maybe someday. It is fun to look back through them.

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  12. I don't journal, and haven't in a long time. But I like your tips for other things in my life, especially to start small.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Cindy. I need to apply "start small" to a lot of things!

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  13. I do a hunt journal. It helps me eliminate mistakes I've made in the past. Same could help in writing.

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    1. True. I love when you comment. Love you!

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  14. Yes I do! I have forever and ever! I love to go back each year and see what I was thinking or praying about.

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    1. That's awesome, Terri! I wish I was as consistent as you are at it.

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  15. I journal as well but not as often as I used to. I use Evernote as a journal so that I can have it everywhere with me (smartphone, ipad, etc.) This post has encouraged me to start back writing in my journal more!

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    1. I'd never considered journaling in Evernote. That's a great idea!

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  16. As a writer, you'd think I'd do more journaling. I do keep notes on what I learn, insights, etc...when I'm studying the Word. But I'm not one to free write thoughts. :)

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  17. Great tips, Julie! As a teenager, one of my Bible study leaders prophesied over me that God wanted me to start keeping a journal. Little did I know how that would spark a dream of someday becoming a writer. I think journaling is so very important to getting in touch with the heart of God for us, the heart of our stories, and even the heart of ourselves. Great tips!

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