Journal Writing: 10 Simple Ways To Write More Often

Woman journal writing

Daily Journal Writing

Life can be chaotic and overwhelming with all of the daily tasks and juggling that we have to do. But taking a few minutes each day to for journal writing can help us keep our sanity and give us clarity on how to manage the chaos.

From organizing your thoughts to providing clarity for difficult situations, writing things down is one of the most powerful tools we have at our fingertips.

In this blog post, we’ll share the barriers and benefits of journal writing, and tips to help you journal more often. Let’s dive in!

Common Barriers to Daily Journaling Writing

lined writing page with two question marks and a broken pencil.

We want to journal every day because we know it’s a life-changing habit worth incorporating into our lives. Yet sometimes our intentions to do good things go off the rails because, well, life happens! Below are the most common blockers keeping us from journaling consistently, and some ideas to overcome them.

Reason 1: Lack of Time

Between work, family, and social obligations, it can be hard to find time for yourself, let alone time to journal. However, journaling doesn’t have to be time-consuming – even just a few minutes a day can be beneficial. Try waking up a few minutes earlier or taking a few minutes before bed to jot down your thoughts. You can also utilize downtime throughout the day – for example, waiting in line or during your lunch break – to write in your journal.

Reason 2: Perfectionism

One of the biggest reasons people don’t write in journals is the idea of needing to write something perfect. Instead of striving for perfection, approach journaling as a way to capture your thoughts and emotions, no matter how messy or imperfect they may be. Remember, your journal is for you, not for anyone else, so there’s no need to impress or please anyone. Embrace imperfections and let your thoughts flow freely.

Reason 3: Lack of Inspiration

When you first start journaling, it can be easy to feel uninspired or unsure of what to write. To combat this, consider setting specific prompts or themes for your journal entries. You can also use your journal to explore your daily experiences, emotions, or goals. Another option is to incorporate creative exercises, such as doodling or collaging, to spark your creativity.

Reason 4: Fear of Judgement

It’s natural to feel vulnerable when writing about personal thoughts and emotions. However, remember that your journal is a safe space for you to express yourself without fear of judgement. If you’re still feeling uneasy, consider keeping your journal in a private location or using a pseudonym. You can also try journaling with a trusted friend or therapist, if that feels more comfortable.

Reason 5: Lack of Accountability

Making a habit of journaling can be challenging without some form of accountability. Try setting a daily or weekly reminder on your phone or calendar, or enlist a friend or accountability partner to check in on your progress. You can also track your progress and goals through your journal itself, to see how far you’ve come.

Why You Should Write Everyday Anyway

Post it note with the words "daily habits" positioned underneath a cupt of coffee

Even with hectic life and writing barriers, journaling is a practice. Consistently practicing turns into a habit. So, it’s important to find at least 5 – 10 minutes each day to journal. Think of it as an essential daily check-in with yourself.

When you open your journal, you enter a safe personal space without boundaries, judgments, or rules. You are free to write about whatever is on your mind. An opportunity to talk with and listen to yourself at the same time.

When we miss opportunities to write, we also miss out on these powerful benefits:

1. You Can Remember More Stuff.

When we write things down, our brains have a better chance of remembering them. This is because when we write something down, it becomes part of our permanent memory. We don’t need to rely on our short-term memory (which only lasts about seven seconds) to remember what we wrote.

2. You Can Organize Your Thoughts Better.

By writing down your thoughts as they occur, you can use the information later to reflect on your writing. Self-reflecting after the fact may help you see a different perspective, identify a solution to a problem, or uncover new ideas. You can read over old entries to remind yourself of past experiences or to plan future activities.

3. You Can Get More Done In Less Time.

Writing down lists helps you waste less time trying to remember what you need to do next. Instead, you can just go ahead and start working on whatever task is next on your list.

4. You Can Be More Productive.

Record and keep track of progress toward your goals. When you write down your plans, you can review them periodically to check whether you’re making good progress. And if you find yourself getting distracted by unimportant tasks, you can quickly jot down reminders to focus on the important ones.

5. You Can Help Yourself Learn New Skills.

If you learn new skills by watching videos online, you can use your journal to write down things to remember. Or write about your journey to learn something new. For example, if a video shows you how to play guitar, you can write down chords and lyrics from the song you watched as practice. Or, capture your thoughts, feelings, and ideas about what you learn along the way.

Whether you write in a paper journal or digital one, the practice of writing things down has proven benefits. Barriers to writing daily are real, but so are the amazing benefits that come from doing it anyway!

Easy Tips To Write More Often

Woman's hand writing in a journal notebook

We’ve covered the importance of journaling consistently. You’re armed with strategies to deal with barriers as they arise. But maybe you’re still not writing in your journal as much as you would like. Here are ten simple tips that can help you write more consistently:

Tip 1: Write in pencil.

Say what?! Yep. Writing in pencil is like giving yourself permission to make mistakes. The best part? If you make a mistake while writing, just erase it! Once you’ve written your entry, you can make it more permanent with pen if you like. If the thought of writing in pencil is not your style, that’s ok. Try using an erasable pen instead.

Tip 2: Explore a different style of journaling writing.

Sometimes changing up what you journal about can help! For example, if you typically write about your day, explore other types of journaling styles. Some examples include: gratitude journal, quotes journal, letter journal, art journal, or a blank page journal for doodling, sketching, or drawing. Try it to see which style inspires you to write more often.

Tip 3: Keep a pad of paper by your bedside.

When you can’t get to your journal, keep a small pad of paper and pen on your nightstand. When you wake up in the morning, write something down. You can write what you’re grateful for, an affirmation, or list of important to do’s. Then, if it’s something you want to dive into in more depth, journal about it later.

Tip 4: Don’t worry about how much space is left on the page.

There are no rules for journal writing. You write as much or as little as you like. Resist the urge to fill up a page. Leave the extra space. You may want to come back to your entry later and fill in more thoughts or ideas.

Tip 5: Take it with you.

Smaller journals (like 6 x 9 and smaller) make it easy to take your journal with you wherever you go. Drop it into your purse, tote, or backpack and you’re ready to write or reflect anytime you’re on the go!

Tip 6: Take breaks.

This seems counterproductive to writing more, right? But, sometimes you move into a zone when you journal write for long periods of time. When your journal writing is about pain, trauma, or difficult times in your life, it’s important to give yourself an emotional time out. Stop, put down your journal, do something else, and come back to it later.

Tip 7: Set a timer.

Using a timer when you journal helps you stay focused. This is helpful if you don’t have a lot of a time. It also makes it easier to schedule journaling time into your day. Before you begin writing, set a timer for 5 – 10 minutes. BUT (you knew that was coming!) you must keep writing until the timer sounds. These short bursts of writing time can help journaling seem less daunting.

Tip 8: Be creative.  

Journals aren’t just for writing. Doodling and sketching count, too! Journaling can also include writing a poem, your favorite lyrics, or your bucket lists. Add color or motivational stickers. Bring out your personality!

Tip 9: Change your location.

Sometimes changing where you write can boost your desire to write! Need ideas for writing locations? Check out our blog post: 10 Unique Places To Find Writing Ideas.

Tip 10: Enjoy yourself!

At the heart of journaling is freedom of expression and self-discovery. It’s a safe space to explore who you are and discover your unique voice. And the perfect place to listen and talk to yourself like a caring friend.

Bottom Line

Writing in a journal can be an immensely fulfilling and rewarding activity, but sometimes it’s just hard to find the time to do it regularly. Don’t get discouraged!

By following these tips, you’ll be able to start writing more often and make a habit out of it that will benefit both your productivity and peace of mind. There are plenty of ways to spark your creativity and jumpstart your journaling journey.

Why not give these tips a try? Take the leap and express yourself more through journaling!

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