I am just coming out of a quiet season, one in which I have been extra reflective and purposeful in sorting out all that is going on in my heart and head. It has been a profitable time, a time of growth.
The joy of journaling has played a large role in this growth as I have used it to reflect on all this life brings, the good and the bad.
There are many reasons why I journal, here are just a few:
WHY I JOURNAL
~it shows glimpses of this precious thing called life, and captures moments while emotions are still fresh, real and pure.
~it helps me to put onto paper thoughts and emotions that can clutter my brain and make my perspective cloudy, which brings clarity. It keeps my brain sharp, helps me to retain information better, and the practice of writing makes me a better writer.
~it is a safe place. A place for inner words that are not ready to be introduced into the world yet.
~depending on the type of journal, it is also a place to leave a legacy and capture thoughts and words to share with generations to come
~it can record a journey. Where was I one year ago today? What were my thoughts & desires? How have I changed?
~A journal can create a place to look back and remember more hopeful times in the bad times. It also records hardships that have already been walked through and overcome, which in reading can bring hope.
Journals & diaries can be workshops for the soul, laboratories where we an investigate and examine our lives, our secrets, hurts, resentments, memories & joys.
Journals are records for the heart and mind. They chart the joys and sorrows of our daily lives, and, like a road map, they can direct us back to our hearts.
Journals are testaments of our lives that we live as fully and consciously as we can.
-Roseann Lloyd – Journey Notes
TYPES OF JOURNALS
If journaling intimidates you or just feels too big, know that it does not have to be an everyday thing. It also can be many words or just one word. There are so many ways to journal and types of journals. The key is to just write.
1. Fill in the blanks
I love these types of journals. I love having a question to stimulate my writing. I have given these types of journals as gifts to my mom and my grandmother, asking them to fill them out and give them back to me. They then become treasures.
2. Art journals
My youngest girl Avery started an art journal. She has the gift of drawing, painting, and taking bits of paper memorabilia and making it into beauty. She is pretty proud of her creation. Gel pens like the Uni-Ball® 307™ Gel Pens found at Office Depot are perfect for these types of journals, as they roll beautifully onto all types of paper– even glossy paper– skip-free and no smudge! They come in a variety of vibrant colors.
3. Thankful journals
There has been very few other practices I have done in my life that are as profitable as journaling my thankfulness. I started doing it with my 1,000 gifts series here on the blog, but this year I started journaling my thanks by hand, in a daily planner type journal. There is something beautiful that takes place when I sit with my thankful journal and pen & gain perspective of all the wonderfulness that happens, even on the most murky of days.
4. Inspirational journals
It is quite a practice to take quotes from inspirational type books or from scripture and apply it to oneself. Writing the inspirational quote or verse down then making it personal is something I enjoy doing. I will either substitute my name where applicable or ask, “What does this say about me?” “How do I apply this to my life?” and then journal it.
5. Nature journal
Go out in nature and journal what you see, hear, smell. Even just simply listing it creates a beautiful journal. You could also take photos and make a nature photo journal.
6. Calendar Journal
My great-grandmother kept a calendar journal. As her granddaughter, it was so precious to read through what everyday life was like through her calendar journals. She would jot down who she visited, what appointments were made, and what she did on certain days. Little daily glimpses of her life, which turned into a great big snapshot of my sweet grandparents and their life together for their grandchildren to enjoy.
7. Classic Journal
This is the type of journaling I do most often. Anything goes. Some days I write pages, some days just a paragraph. My classic journal is lined and contains lists, thoughts, reflections, verses of songs I want to remember & things I am learning. I make it a point to have no rules for myself, as there is no perfect way of journaling.
As you can see, there are so many different ways to express your emotions on paper…so explore them all!
TOOLS OF JOURNALING
I am a big fan of Moleskine journals. They are well made, classic, I like that they look uniform on a shelf and will last for years to come. They come ruled, squared or plain. I prefer ruled as without it, my handwriting tends to slant down to the right.
To me, the pen is just as important as the journal. I am a bit picky when it comes to the pens I use. They must feel right in my hand and allow me to write without thinking about the tool that I am using, which means it must flow freely & smoothly. I need a pen that inspires me to write. I have found just that in the uni-ball® AIR™ Rollerball Pen which can be found at Office Depot. It writes so smooth and at every angle. It gives a perfect fluid writing experience and the ink shows up nice and bold. It is elegant and sophisticated, and features exclusive uni Super Ink for three-way protection against water, fading and fraud.
~Coffee or Tea
Ok, ok, not a necessity for everyone, but it sure is for me. There is nothing like sitting down with a warm cup, my journal & my favorite pen to clear my head and help me to just exhale.
WHY WRITE VS TYPE
I’m sure you would have guessed that I am a nostalgic person, especially with the name of my blog being New Nostalgia. There is something so nostalgic about handwriting. I have cards with my great- grandmothers beautiful, loopy cursive writing that I have saved, not because of the card itself but because of how priceless it became once she wrote in the card by hand.
As a blogger, I do my share of typing. I even write a series to my girls called “Leaving a Legacy” which too, is quite nostalgic. But, I love that despite all my typing, they will also have plenty of journals with my handwriting in them. It makes it so much more personal. Think about it… would you rather have a typed list of things your mother or father were thankful for or would you like to see it in their own handwriting?
I also keep a recipe box with handwritten recipes, with key family recipes in it that are also hand written. I have hand written recipes from aunts, friends, my mom and grandma. I just love seeing all the different handwriting from those I love!
One last point, handwriting is something helps you retain what you are writing and can be quite therapeutic. Handwriting is the result of a singular movement of the body, typing is not. It takes movement, thought, fluidity, & pen to paper.
Ahhh…pen to paper. Even typing that makes me feel nostalgic & makes me crave a cup of tea!
What about you?
Do you journal? Do you keep an online journal or a written journal? Do you still keep a handwritten recipe box? Do you like taking notes by typing or writing?
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Uni Ball. The opinions and text are all mine.