How to Start a Journal

How to Start a Journal31

Keeping a journal is extremely valuable. This documentation will help your posterity and future generations to know you on a personal level. Not only will it benefit your family, but you may find as you go back and reflect on what you’ve written down that it may be helpful to you as well. There is power in writing and recording. Whether it helps you to retain a treasured memory or helps you to realize how you felt in a certain situation, a journal is invaluable.

What to Include

In your journal, be sure to include important information that you’d like your posterity to know. You can include information about your daily life. Or just including big events such as trips, birthdays, marriages, births, etc. There are many creative ways to keep a journal. Try summarizing your day in twenty words or less. Or keep a gratitude journal and write down what you’re grateful for daily. Whatever you decide to record, be sure to record important information likes dates of entries and locations where you spend your time. This will give you and your posterity the chance to visit places where you spent your time.

Be Honest

It may be tempting to record your life the way you want it to be, but when you honestly write down your thoughts, feelings, concerns, and struggles, it may help you sort through them and give your posterity the chance to learn from you. Be honest about your life, your situation, and your thoughts. Writing down your goals and ambitions will give insight into who you are, what you value, and give you something to track as you reach for those things. Keep your journal personal and in a safe place to be honest about everything.

Try Using Prompts

If you’re stuck on what to write about, try using a prompt. For example, write every time you celebrate a friend or family members birthday. Write about your favorite birthdays. Or try writing about people in your life who have impacted you. You could have an entry for each important person in your life. Including other things like favorite song lyrics, poems, or quotes can also be a good prompt to write. Picking a different theme each month may be helpful. One month you could write about goals and ambitions. The next month you could write about childhood memories.

Include Pictures

As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Include pictures in your journal. This can also act as a writing prompt and make your journal more visual. You can include captions, dates, addresses, names of those included in the picture, etc. It may also inspire you to write when you have a photo you want to add to your journal. Try buying a Polaroid camera and using those photos to document, this will be an easy way to regularly add photos.

When to Write

It’s common to start a journal and have trouble keeping up with it. Solve this problem by writing when specific events happen. For example, make a goal to write every holiday. Or set aside a time once a week to write. You can keep it short, even just a few sentences or a paragraph at a time can help you get in the habit. Most important, record your important experiences. Reflect on your perspective of your wedding day, the days your children are born, be sure to record the big days. Of course, you won’t forget these days, but you may not remember the details or the things you felt exactly without a written record.