revised and reposted from April 2012
Oh, the joy of journaling!
I started out with a diary as a young child…moved to a notebook and poetry in my teens…and since then, have had periods of time where I abstained from journaling, used a notebook daily, using a designed format, and now…I am taking 750 words daily and typing away to my heart’s content.
Sign up here for a FREE Journal Form designed to create clarity, understanding, and maybe even some life-changing ideas and action!
I like my 750 words! Right now, I am on a blogging challenge to blog daily. I aim to plump up the chapters in a health and wellness book. I am also working on a training book for my daughter to design, specify and manage custom drapery and top treatments. I have a lot on my plate, and the 750 words help to break it down into manageable segments. If I finish my self-assigned writing in less than 750 words, I get to meander in my thoughts, and that is where the magic happens! The bonus is that it is all written down, so I can go back and reference my thoughts.
Regardless of how I journal, I find benefits. It clarifies, prioritizes, and sometimes presents grand ideas out of the blue!
—Tips for Finding Time to Journal—
It can be very difficult to make time for journaling every morning.
• Try getting up just a half hour or 20 minutes earlier. This gives you 20-30 minutes of quiet time before the house comes alive.
• You might find a few minutes after everyone else leaves the house.
• (My favorite) You may find 15 minutes in a coffee shop, or juice stop on your way to work gives you the time you need to write and will add to the pleasure.
• 15 minutes before you start your work routine may be the time for you. You may think it will cause you to stay later at work to get everything accomplished. Writing is like your morning workout; it is incredible how spending time can buy you more time throughout the day. Your head is clearer, and you can do your job and handle people more efficiently and effectively.
Journaling in the morning allows you to clear the cobwebs in your brain. You’ll notice effects almost immediately; it helps to focus you. You will find that you do things that you would have skipped over otherwise. Try to journal every day. If you don’t…then sometimes it will work too.
It is established that it takes 6 months to form a habit.
Commit to journaling for 6 months! Then, tell me what has happened!
Please comment below and share how you journal now!
I love journaling! I keep a poetry blog where I post both my photos and poetry, but on paper I am always working on something. I have messy journals where I do free writing and fiction and whatever. It is not pretty, but it is usually full (It has actually been a bit neglected lately though because I am over extended)
I also have my pretty journals where I take care (to a degree) wth my handwriting, use pretty pens and paste pictures. I keep chronicles of my time, and recipes, notes from readings and other notes. I love going back and reading my journals, they are really telling.
I have a love/hate relationship with writing. I typically am afraid to start journaling because it takes me hours and I seem to get lost in it, which is really kind of nice and can be very rewarding. But I also tend to be a perfectionist, which really doesn’t help when it comes to writing, because then it takes all of my day! (or 2).
Having said all that, you have inspired me! So I will give it a go once again. 🙂
Great post Cathy! I wonder how you would distinguish between “productive” journaling, such as for a finished product and non productive? I find that to really connect with myself, I have to hand write things, which isn’t conducive to getting a book or blog post written. Anyone else run into this?
Cathy, this is so inspirational to hear how much you’re writing! 750 words is not a small assignment!
This was a fun blog to write. I am just testing because a few people said they were not able to comment.
I love journaling and though it’s harder to find the time now that I have a pre-schooler, when I do, I get so much out of it, including peace of mind and clarity. Thanks for the reminder! I am going to try my best to journal the next 30 days, at least.
I love the quiet time in the morning before everyone else is awake. It’s my best writing time. If I don’t do it then it doesn’t happen! Great post, Cathy!
Hi Cathy, I’ve always struggled to journal so these are some great tips, thank you. I have many pretty books that I’ve started journalling in. I really should give it a concerted effort. Thanks for reminding me.
I’ve never been a regular journal writer. I always write, but have rarely done it as a daily practice. I write all day about whatever is going on, though. It’s how I process and clarify. And I love to teach in written form. I just pulled out the classic Writing Down the Bones, which advocates regular journal writing. And I was reminded of my long-standing resistance to it. Interesting.
Hi Cathy! Fantastic idea! I used to write a log in a journal when I was young and I remember being so clear-minded. Now, there is so much on my plate, so many responsibilities. I’m wondering now, after reading your post, if this might actually be helpful. I will try it -and I love the idea of waking up 15 minutes earlier “before the house comes alive.”
Oh how I miss journalling! It’s been years since I have sat down to write. Thanks for the great tips and the reminder to take the time to write for pleasure.
Oh how I love journaling…currently, I am in an on-again-off-again relationship with it though. I have journaled all my life, but will sometimes go a couple months without a written word. This is a great reminder to make some time for it….thanks for the lovely post.
I so admire how much you are writing these days. Love this blog…very inspiring to get back to something I always did for years as well…diaries and recording lifes activities. I look forward to getting your journal form to get myself started. Have I told you how proud I am of you!
I like to write. I have so many ideas in my head, it’s just getting them all out on paper, that others would like to read is the hard part. I tried doing morning pages when I was in school. I had a love/hate relationship with it. 750 words is a lot. What’s one more challenge? I just might give it a try.