Today, I want to talk to you about something I have a love-hate relationship with...journaling. This has been a long journey for me and I want to share it with you, particularly those of you that may think journaling is a waste of time.
When it comes to journaling, you likely struggle with it because you're not sure how to do it or you think it is a waste of time.
The bottom line is this..there is no one right way to journal, and there are some massive benefits to journaling.
So first, I want to tell you a little bit about my journey with journaling, and then I want to give you five reasons why it is important to actually bring this into your life.
While I am creative in certain areas of my life, I'm not an artist by any stretch. I was not naturally drawn to writing. I love solving problems, doing puzzles, etc. I was always drawn to the idea of journaling because I think it spoke to that other side of my brain. But, because I am very much a list maker, rule follower, mathematically wired person, every time I would sit down to journal, I felt like I didn't know how.
One day I was gifted a book called “52 Two Lists of Happiness.” Every week there was a question that you were prompted to write down a very specific list. I loved it. Lists! Yes!
Little did I realize that I was journaling. The simple act of focusing on this one list for the week unlocked so much in my life! After doing this for several weeks, it hit me. I was journaling...and I was loving it!
New ideas were flowing in, I was reconnecting with old stuff in my head, and I thought about things differently.
Journaling is simply getting pen to paper and writing down ideas, thoughts, memories, whatever it is that you are inspired to connect with.
Now, let’s get to the five reasons why it is important to bring journaling into your life.
We fail to recognize that there is always stuff going on in the back of our heads. As we journal, we get to release that information from our brain, and getting it down on paper frees up space in your brain so that you can now focus and have clarity on tasks you need to get done.
Creativity is expressed in a million different ways. We need to connect with the thoughts that are going on in our head with our emotions, feelings, and experiences. I’m talking about the past, present, and future. Journaling helps unlock your creativity and helps you express yourself more clearly.
Journaling can release all kinds of emotions. By releasing them, we gain so much clarity in our life. When you reconnect with experiences in the past and/or things you want in the future, it allows you to see what works for you, what doesn’t, what brings you joy, what sucks the life out of you, what are your hopes, what are your aspirations, etc. When you have that clarity, it has a direct impact on helping you to prioritize how you're spending your time. Journaling allows you to learn what you should continue investing your time and energy into, along with what you can let go of.
When you write something down on paper, it helps to solidify it in your head. There are a ton of brain science studies that show the importance of not only writing things down but then reading them back. When we do that, it helps to “lock” that into our brain.
Think about a raging river that is flowing downstream. How hard would it be for you to push something upstream? Now relate that to your brain. If you are in a constant state of “go” and “action”, how can you expect new ideas and thoughts to come in? You have to get out of constant output mode if you expect new, fresh ideas to present themselves. Journaling is a great place to quiet yourself down, to be still for a minute, to get things out of your head onto paper, and to create that quiet space for those great little ideas, those memories, and those problem solving ideas to pop in.
Studies show that journaling increases productivity and creativity. Period. Who doesn’t want more of that in their life? I know I do!
If you are like me and are not sure how or where to start, I have created the perfect journal for you! It is my “Just Bee” journal...the journal for people who think journaling is a waste of time.
It is a prompting journal..the exact place I started my path to journaling. It has 52 questions for you. Each week, you can pick one page...just one...and answer the prompt.
That’s it. You are journaling!
Check out the journal on my website HERE
You'll see that the journal and my TOP Planner compliment each other nicely. Yes, that was by design.
Special shout out to the amazing Margaret Cogswell of Margaret Cogswell designs for bringing this journal of mine to life!