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A Journaling Breakthrough: finding a groove with writing

Updated: Aug 2, 2022

Journaling has always had a saved s-ace in my days, since as long as I can remember. When I was little I would write stories and thoughts and fantasies. As I got older I started to tell myself that I needed to write a lot because my older self would appreciate daily documentation of my thoughts…

That made me stop writing. For almost a year.

I had structured my writing, made it a chore. I would dread having to write everyday because I had embedded such a ,I’d set in myself that I needed to write for future me.

But the truth is, journaling is really for the present me. Future me will be grateful for the memories, but present me deserves it right now.

So I started to journal again. And I began writing in the mornings and it worked. But I had a journal for my thoughts, a journal for habit tracking, a journal for self-growth notes, and a planner. And a journal on the books I’ve read. Can someone say too much?

This caused a slump in my writing again… go figure. I had set up so many journals for myself that structuring a morning routine to keep all of them up to date was nearly impossible and once again became a chore.

So I laid back on it and that’s when I wrote the first draft of a novel -reject back last NaNoWriMo. This sparked the fictional and creative side of my love for writing once more. I began making story ideas left and right and writing in depth to-do lists in my planner, practically a bullet journal style.

And when I thought I was on a roll with this first draft, I finished it and had plans to developmentally edit it and move on. I planned to make it the next best thing. Eight months later, I’ve made probably two pages of notes on it. Some may call it a slump, which I did in the beginning of not wanting to even look at the story again, but now I see it as just story exhaustion. And it makes me excited to revisit it in the near future and have complete fresh eyes on the project.

But moving on, not having a story to work full force on, which with that one I wrote 75,000 words in November, I journaled again. And it felt good, but again, I only let myself journal about my day and thoughts on what I had done or seen. And it was boring.

I set aside journaling again a few months ago as a new story idea came to me. For six weeks I dedicated time to outline and scene plot that story, and for the past month I’ve been drafting it at a much slower but effective pace. And alongside it, I’m journaling too! It is possible to do both after trial and error and finding that balance.

Now here’s where it gets good, what have I changed that has made me much more consistently journal?

I have a complete open mindset.

This sounds simple, but let me explain. As I said before, I used a specific journal for specific things, such as my thoughts, my habits, a book log, and more. All of these had their own notebook. Which was way too organized, but for some reason I could not stand the idea of everything being jumbled into one. That was, until I did it.

I started this journal with intention to write anything to]hat needed to be out of my mind into the page. Whether that be my thoughts, to-do lists, quotes, doodles, scraps of things I did that day, affirmations, aspirations, inspirational words and mantras, fitness routines, meal ideas… the list goes on. I started writing all of this in one place.

Let me tell you, it becomes addicting. The pages fill fast, the journal starts to go everywhere with you, the cover becomes worn in… it becomes built into you. I am on summer break from college right now, so I have a lot of down time to focus on me, and I am not exaggerating when I say I journal at least ten pages a day.

Go buy your favorite brand journal, pens, double sided tape, scrap doodles, and any other goodies that will inspire your creativity. It channels your inner child while also let’s out that maturing and self-developmental side.

So I’ll say it in short… don’t take journaling too seriously. Don’t force yourself to journal. And only keep one journal at a time. Don’t even buy a new one u til the current one is full, it will be tempting to restart. Just write any and everything in it. Still have a planner for actual organization, but this journal is a complete copy and paste of your brain into physical form.

If you are currently in a slump with writing, as I mentioned being in before, I hope this sparked some motivation or courage to start up again. I will be posting blogs in the future of journal spread ideas too, so stay tuned!

Thanks for reading, I’ll see you soon!



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