What Do I Journal About? How To Create A Journalling Practice
Journalling is a practice I am a big fan of. I’ve journaled and posted a bit about the impact the practice has had on myself, my mental health and as I make sense of situations and being a person who is quite introspective. The ‘Fine art of journalling’ is the previous post and gives some tasters and ideas.
‘What we never learned in school’ has a focus on journalling and outlines ideas about what to journal on (with quite a few prompts). Journal on your values, your friendship circles and your future goals as part of the prompts that are included in the book.
Factors to consider. So why journal and how do you decide if it is for you or not?
- Do you find yourself ruminating quite a lot? When it comes to our thoughts, they are really just visitors. When we attach to them, they affect our behaviours and our emotions on a frequent basis and so, it’s necessary to understand where they are coming from. Start by establishing if this is a habit of yours or not.
- What are the predominant thoughts? Understanding what the predominant thoughts are will establish if you are getting stuck in loops and what that can look like for you.
- How do you deal with them? We all have thoughts that are unpleasant and as highlighted previously, our minds are geared towards threat as per our biology. This means that we naturally have thoughts that are connected to threat and negativity bias. Acceptance is key here.
- What is the root of these thoughts? We may have recurring thoughts that keep us stuck in a loop without us knowing why. When this happens, it can mean we are stuck in a freeze state. This means that we are unable to move out of our current state and can feel stagnant as that happens. Acknowledging this is important to move forward.
Some practical tips to start your journalling practice.
- Less is more. A new habit can seem like a mountain. Keep it simple by starting with just 5 minutes per day! From there, you can build the habit.
- Know your why. Establishing a clear why for doing something is very important. For example, are you journalling because you want to stop venting to friends or do you want to build a structure into your day?
- Make it actionable. When it comes to journalling, have some clear outcomes and actions you would like to establish from the practice. For example, would you like to face some challenging scenarios or task that have been building up for you?
- Reward yourself. When it comes to forming any habit, having a reward scheme is recommended. This means that you are able to have a carrot in mind. It can be something as simple as having a cake you’ve been craving or getting your nails done (decide what a real treat or reward looks like for you!).
Keep posted for journaling tips over on Instagram & TikTok (@sometimeswrite).