I have a confession to make – I stink at keeping a journal. It seems that, even though I absolutely adore writing, I stink at keeping my life story up to date. I have a number of journals and notebooks, none of which are complete, filled with writings of my latest crush, my worst frenemy, etc. etc. To put things in perspective, I'm pretty sure my latest two journal entries are five years apart, and go something like, “Oh, by the way, I married a guy completely different from the last one I wrote about, we've moved 11 times, and I'm pregnant now.” That's how terrible I am at keeping a journal.
As I've grown older and had a couple of kids, I've begun to think about what kind of legacy I will leave for their children when I'm gone. I want them to know who I was – my feelings, my struggles, my blessings, and, well, my outlook on life. I want them to be able to feel like they know me through the things I've left. Journaling is a great way to tell our stories, and believe me – it does not have to be boring! I'm not the type of person who can stick with writing my life story every time I sit down to journal, so I've done some digging and some thinking, and would love to share these simple (but still unique and creative) ways to keep a journal.
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Here are 5 Creative Ways to Journal:
1. Vlogs. Yes, you read that right! I mean, who says a journal has to be written?! Some of us are great writers, others are great talkers. If you don't have the time or energy to write in your journal at the end of the day, make a vlog. With modern technology, we almost always have a video camera or recording device at arm's length, and plenty of free online storage to organize and keep our “journals.” Vlogging is a creative way to journal because you are able to express yourself with more than just words on a piece of paper. In my opinion, vlogging is the most real, pure form of journaling there is.
2. Lists. I know some people are list people and others aren't, and that's okay! There is an amazing challenge that goes along with journaling called “Listers Gotta List.” Each month, a new list of prompts comes out, and you journal each day by making a list that goes along with the prompt. You can be as creative or plain as you want with your journaling, but the goal is to follow the prompts and make a new entry each day. My mom introduced me to this way of journaling – it's great for those people who are short on time (or open their journals and sit there for ten minutes wondering what the heck they should write about).
3. Words of Inspiration. I love quotes – I always have. So why not use quotes and words that inspire us in our journals? I have what I call an “inspiration” journal. I will keep it with me and write quotes in it when I hear an address or words that really speak to me or inspire me. I sometimes wish I knew calligraphy so that it was a little more easy on the eyes, but it is such an important book for me. I can see what I was struggling with and where I was at in life, when I go through the book, because of the quotes that stuck out to me at the time they were written. When I was preparing for the birth of my son, there were multiple pages filled with words of affirmation. When I was struggling with my business, there were words about perseverance and hard work. I can guarantee you that no matter what you're going through in life, there's a quote for that! Grab a notebook and record those quotes that speak to you.
4. Collages and vision boards. Do you remember how, in grade school, we were handed stacks of magazines and told to make a collage about ourselves? One that described who we were and what we enjoyed? Well, why not journal that same way? This probably isn't one to do daily, but a couple of times a year, take your journal or notebook, some magazines, and scissors, and go to town! Unleash your creativity and lay out your goals, dreams, and plans.
5. Tweet. Twitter is still a thing, right?! Keep things short and sweet and at the end of the day, “tweet” in your journal. See if you can write about your day in 140 characters or less. It really is harder than it sounds, and requires a bit of creativity. For those days where you feel like you have nothing to say, even the most simple entry is better than nothing, right?!
A couple journals to check out that can help:
One Line A Day Journal – for all you busy people out there! Just get something down.
Question & Answer Journal – help get the wheels turning if you struggle to know what to write.
What TIPS do YOU have for keeping a journal??
What kind of journaler are you? Do you enjoy being creative with your entries, or do you prefer to just let the words flow? Let us know in the comments if you have any more creative journaling ideas!