To Journal … or Not?

I think it was Jillian Chantal who mentioned she had a new journal to start the new year with. I bought one, too. In fact, cool-looking journals are a weakness of mine. I love the look of them. I love the blank pages, just waiting to be filled.

What I don’t like is taking time to consistently write in them. I can write stories about fictional characters easier than I can expound on the happenings in my own life. Why is that? I start out strong, listing relevant events for the day and how I feel about them. Eventually, this turns into a quick outline of the day and no emotions attached. And finally, I stop journaling altogether and it becomes what my friend calls a “brain book”, my to-do list for the day.

I think part of it is that sometimes, what happens in a day isn’t all good. And, while I’m good with the “good”, the “bad” and “ugly” are hard for me to write.

journalltSo I’ve had this shiny, new journal sitting on my desk for over a week and it’s still just blank pages. I keep staring at it and wondering what I should write. Which avenue of thought will be my inspiration, my hope at the end of the day.

Maybe that’s what I should do…just commit to writing about the best of my day. What made today good for me and the folks around me? What inspired me today to make tomorrow even better.

How about you? Do you journal? Daily or in a more random pattern?

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15 responses to “To Journal … or Not?

  1. I now use journals and write one page a day–that is it. lol

  2. I think one page is perfect However I have never journaled and now I wish I would have. I tried when our older son was hurt on the advice of a good friend. I maybe did 5 days. A few years ago we had a first ever family reunion and I dug up an old travel journal my grandmother had written. Complete with prices of gas, food, lodging. We typed it up for everyone what a hit.

    I guess Laurie it’s like everything else (ie. Just Do It). So easy to say huh?

  3. Valerie J. Patterson

    I have many journals that I kept over the years. I have found that forcing myself to journal leads to a boring journal, but writing when the mood strikes leads to a much better journal. My Aunt Sis used to buy my journals. I loved the books she picked out for me. Each one was a gift and the card attached would say something about filling the blank page and using my creativity. Laurie, if you’re unsure, counting your blessings is always better than counting your woes. Write about your blessings unless your woes are too heavy for your heart and need to be let go. 😛

    • I think that’s what I’m going to do, Valerie. Count my blessings. I was thinking of adding “what I learned today” to the end of each journal. As well, I’m not going to force myself to do it daily, just when it strikes a need. I’ll have to try to blog about this at the end of 2014 and see how far I got. 🙂

  4. You can make it into a cool moments or little graces journal. Write down little things that made you smile, a quote you saw and like, a high point of the day, that kind of thing.

    Another thing I use journals for is keeping up with stuff in my stories. I have one page per character and add quirks, descriptions, etc and can refer quickly back to it if I need to recall something about some minor character (like last name- I tend to forget those) and on my historicals, I do a family tree so I have all the ages right and the ancestors. I draw that in.
    If I think of a scene idea, I jot it. I usually have a list of songs on one of the pages, Junk like that. I love that the notes are in a pretty place and they are easy to carry and keep up with.

    Dive in!! Jillian

    • I used to use spiral notebooks for my writing. Now I use Excel so I can have everything with me just by carrying my laptop or flash drive.
      So this journal is going to be events and happenings. And hopefully I’ll keep up with it. 🙂

      • ahh. Good use of Excel. I’m not an Excel gal- it has nice qualities but being on the computer all day, I like to use other neck muscles once in a while. LOL
        Some days I hunch over the machine so much that I need a change.

      • I hope you’ll keep your events entries since they will be great memories some day.

  5. Yes. I need to make sure I keep those entries, at the very least. Off to journal now….

  6. Like you I love buying beautiful journals, Laurie, although don’t always use them! A few years ago I tried writing morning pages as recommended by Julia Cameron in her book The Artist’s Way. Three pages of stream of consciousness writing, but eventually gave this up because it made my wrist hurt ( excuses, excuses 🙂 ) I do use a gratitude journal and write down three things that I’m grateful for before I go to bed each night.

    • I’ve read The Artist’s Way, Tricia. Inspirational, and I wish I could devote more time to what she suggests, like morning pages. I’ve been journaling about two weeks now, but not every day. Just when I feel like it. No pressure. And definitely adding what I’m grateful for. Kudos to you for doing that each and every night.

  7. Oh how I wish I had written journals in the past, if only to look back on my life and remember, analyze and see where I went wrong in my decisions. I started one years ago, as a teenager, but as not much seemed to be happening in my life, I gave it up. Oh how I wish I had continued, although I do, for some reason, always keep my diaries. I have a stack of them. Don’t know why, I never look at them!

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