Some of the greatest writers in history kept a journal with them. What they once used as a diary to record their innermost thoughts and feelings became famous pieces of literature studied in schools, colleges and by scholars. You may not want such a personal item of yours being read by millions but it could be something your children and even grand children would love to read when they are old enough. Journals are a great way to get things off your chest, set and manage goals and be creative. If you are interested in starting a journal but don’t know how to, then carry on reading the points and tips below.
How to Start a Journal: 9 Ways to Start Well
Find a notebook and make it yours
A lot of people tend to get a private diary that comes with a key and a lock so nobody can access it but them but as long as you can write in it, it’s totally fine. Customize and decorate your journal. Part of how to start a journal is making it yours through how you make it look. Some ways to decorate your journal is by taking clippings of pictures from your favorite magazine or newspaper and sticking it on the front and back pages.
Keep the stakes low
Don’t announce to the world that you have now become a writer and don’t promise yourself things you can’t fulfil. Keep the stakes low because the process becomes less intimidating.
Find the best time and place
Figure out when your creative juices flow the most or write when you feel like you have a lot to say. If you are not sure then you can always experiment with how to start a journal and try writing in the morning or before bed. Your environment is important too. You will be able to write better in a quiet place so get out of the house if it’s too much of a distraction for you and go to a café or library instead.
Use an app
A lot of people recommend using a physical diary to start a journal but there is nothing wrong with using an app. Apps are great because they allow you to include videos and pictures and offer opportunities to be more creative.
Write on a calendar
There are no specific rules on how to start a journal and there is no harm in making your own. You can use a large calendar to jot your thoughts down. It’s a great option for people who aren’t really keen on writing or those who don’t want to make a big commitment to it. Writing a few sentences each day on a calendar feels much more attainable.
Write for quantity not quality
Don’t be phased by how good you think your writing is, as it’s really nobody else’s business but yours. Just set yourself goals and achieve them. You can set yourself a writing goal each week – for example; you could dedicate 30 minutes just to write in your journal each day or whatever you think is best. Don’t over think on how good your writing is, just get the words out of your head and onto the page.
Tell yourself the truth
Starting a journal is your chance to live your truth and be as candid and honest as you want. Don’t try and ignore your feelings or convince yourself that you don’t know what you really know. Just be honest and take it slow.
Nobody can tell you how to start a journal and how you choose to do that is entirely up to you, so do what you want! Be free and embrace the process of writing whatever you want to write.
Protect your privacy
Keep your journal in a secret place and make sure nobody else has access to it. You can also kindly ask the people you live with not to intrude or read it. Also, on the front page of your book, write your name and address and a clear message saying: “please do not read”. This is just so that in case you lose it and someone finds it, it can be returned to you safely.
3 Tips About What to Write for Your Journal
Your innermost thoughts
Starting a journal allows you to record your innermost thoughts and feelings, especially ones you may not want to share with other people. You can also look back at it months later and reminisce on how you felt at that very point in time or see how you have grown and developed as a person.
Goals you wish to achieve
Your journal can be used for writing down long term personal goals you wish to achieve in the future. Reviewing your goals from time to time (after it’s been written down) will let you see how close you are to achieving it or how hard you need to work to achieve it.
Stream of consciousness journaling
If you are considering starting a journal then now is your chance to do it. Get yourself a notebook or diary if you can, if you don’t have that then you can write a note in your phone, on a calendar or start a blog. For you regular journals, well done and keep writing.
What kind of journal will you be writing today? ;)