journaling: how i do it + why you should too! || life & literature ep. 5

Ever felt the need to channel all that mental energy you’ve built up somewhere? Or perhaps you have a plethora of thoughts you need to jot down somewhere: but you don’t know where! Well. you’ve come to the perfect place.

I’ve had piles of notebooks stacked up on the top shelf of my wardrobe ever since I was a child. The ones I received from birthday parties with Frozen characters tattooed onto the spine, those bound by secrecy with a lock and a key, and my favourite of them all – the ruled notebooks with floral quotes on the cover.

It’s always been hard for me to start using a notebook: I’m always second-guessing myself – ‘is a travel journal really useful’ or ‘this notebook is too pretty to be used as a dream journal.’ And the cycle goes on and on, and hoarding notebooks is now my speciality.

Honestly, though, this never seems to stop me from buying them. Nevertheless, on my thirteenth birthday, I finally found something that stuck: journalling. So, let’s get into why I love it so much!

Journaling? you may ask. Do you mean like AmandaRachLee’s bujo spreads? Or the Notion template videos that YouTube bombards me with?

Yes… and no.

person holding on red pen while writing on book

Journaling is what you want it to be. It could be a notebook where you jot down what you’re grateful for, maybe a Notion template where you brain-dump or even a diary. It’s completely personalised; what works for you.

Journaling is an amazing way to keep track of your thoughts and your feelings – and, if you’re regular, you might even see a pattern. If you hang out with someone a few days a week and every evening that day, you feel angry or jealous – or any sort of toxic emotion, you’ll have something to tell you that he/she isn’t right for you. If someone isn’t making you smile, they’re not worth your time.

Perhaps it’s the writer in me that finds journaling so very fascinating, or perhaps it’s just the want to cling onto beautiful memories – the good, and the bad. Or maybe it’s something that reminds me that even in my darkest hour, I’ve made it to where I am now – and that truth holds good for my next misery. Nevertheless, here are a few tips I find incredibly helpful when it comes to journaling and making time for it + why you should journal.

But why is journaling so important? Why does it even matter?

it helps with your mental health + issues you might be having 🌼

A teacher that belittles you, a friend that doesn’t give you joy, these people don’t deserve a place in your life. You’ll slowly realise that journaling is just like self-care, and I’ve come to love it over these past few months. I think that letting out what you feel is so important because all of those bottled-up emotions can erupt at the wrong time.

It isn’t healthy; trust me.

So pick up a pen and let your thoughts flow – make it something you want to do. Its effects are mindblowing and it is such a stress-buster

the freedom is endless 🦋

white notebook on white textile

Journals aren’t of ‘two types’ and there isn’t just ‘one way to journal.’ People may say that, but it’s their way of journaling. If you want to write about what you’re grateful for – journaling’s just for you: keep a gratitude journal! If you want to stay a little more true to your faith, start a prayer journal.

If you’re that disorganised, messy-haired girl with books strewn across her desk – I’m not looking away – then try a bullet journal or just one where you write lists!

I think your journal reflects who you are so don’t just do it because it looks ‘aesthetic’ and that Pinterest board be perfect for your journal. (It wouldn’t hurt to do that, but still.) Your journal is you and that’s what really matters.

it’s beautiful to look back on ✨

Do you ever get that ‘I wish I could relive that day!’ feeling? Well, journals are perfect for that. In all honesty, sometimes I write completely irrelevant things on big days but I still love reliving what I felt when something happened.

It’s very The Princess Diaries: maybe you’ll figure out something that’s been right under your nose, but you’ve not been paying attention. Journaling is your storehouse of memories – as long as no one peeks, of course!

But, Maya, I’ve tried! I’ve tried so very hard, and yet it doesn’t seem to be working!

Oh, but it will work.

Here’s my list of tips to begin journaling. It’s not all that glamourous as it’s made out to be when you first start because, well, you just can’t seem to get into the habit of it! It’s honestly not that hard: you just need to give yourself some time and first enjoy doing it ♥

It’s not a novel – it doesn’t HAVE to be sequential and perfect. Take the pressure off of yourself, and your consistency shall know no bounds. Honest.

use the time that you have 🕒

silver laptop computer table table beside of Journal book

Those extra minutes you spend waiting for lunch to be served or that time you’re just tired of reading and you’re looking up at the ceiling at night because you just. can’t. sleep? Perfect.

If you really want to get something out, but you don’t have the time for it, jot down what you want to elaborate on, and do it when you do have the time to write.

Another option is to bullet point your thoughts and opinions. My personal opinion is that this works if you’re trying to list out things you’re grateful for, or maybe a fun list, such as your favourite couples from TV shows, but it might work for certain incidents you want to write down.

you don’t need to do it everyday 📔

As I mentioned, you’ll automatically see a change once you stop forcing yourself to do it. It might seem as though your life is boring and nothing’s happening, but that isn’t true. There’s so much happening. Text a friend who you last messaged only for their birthday (you don’t want to have to message them only next year on their birthday, do you?) Pay a little more attention to what people say. It makes a difference.

So journal consistently, but take the pressure off of yourself – it’s something you want to do, not a chore. And that brings us to…

make it something you love & look forward to 💖

white ruled notebook on blue denim textile

When I decided to make journaling a priority, I realised I needed to love doing it. If I flip through it today, I see endless entries about how depressed I felt or about how happy I felt – nothing in between. It’s because I only felt like writing when there WAS something to write about.

So if today’s your first time journaling, don’t exhaust everything in one day. Leave in hanging so you’ll be super pumped to write tomorrow. Enjoy it.


Do you journal? Has this post made you want to journal at least a little bit? Hopefully, this made journaling seem a little less intimidating! What are YOUR pros and cons of journaling? I’ve missed this space so much 💖

P.S: the July & August monthly recap headed your way at the end of this month is already PACKED! drop your post ideas down here!

42 thoughts on “journaling: how i do it + why you should too! || life & literature ep. 5

  1. I agree! I have a journal, but I’m honestly horrible at keeping consistent. xD I journal in it when I have thoughts I want to get out, but don’t really want to talk to anyone about… or just when I’m bored… it’s really a messy mismatch of stuff… but I really enjoy it!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I know, right? Yep, I love writing down what I think and most times it’s kind of odd that it’s a bunch of scrambled thoughts but the most important thing is that one loves it – so glad you agree!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This was a great post, Maya! One of my resolutions for the past…erm, 3 years (I know) are to journal consistently. I’ve never succeeded till now but reading the post made me want to! Awesome job!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I used to journal a while back, but I stopped unconsciously. Your post has inspired me to get back into it ❤ !! I actually found my old journal a couple of days back and it was really really hilarious to read through 🤣

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I love journaling too, I have a few notebooks I use to keep notes about my novels and one to keep notes about acting/theatre and stuff like that. 😀 And I agree, it’s really cool to look back on once I’m done writing in them.

    This was an awesome post,

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Very Nice Maya 🙂 I hope you have a nice day or night wherever you live! I would like to contact you soon with regards to an enquiry I would like to make about your work… Please let me know when you are free!
    ~From your biggest biggest fan
    Sahana Kaushik

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As of now, my way of journaling is my sketchbook. I draw every day, and sometimes I’ll leave little notes, or the drawings will express what I’ve been feeling.
    I also have a dream journal, which is super fun to look through.😂
    This post actually did make me think about having a day-to-day journal, I may very well try it! Thanks!
    Wonderful read!

    Liked by 3 people

    • That is so cool! I completely forgot about that idea – it seems so fun!! I’ve heard about dream journals and I’ve tried to start one for SO long but when I dream something I end up forgetting it immediately xD

      Ahh, so glad it helped! Thank you for reading!!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. 100% agree with this post! I’ve been journaling for years (very on and off at first) and I think they’re great for, as you said, letting out emotions that you wouldn’t really want to tell anybody else about and writing small details that I’ll want to remember in the future. Like I love reading back on my old journals and seeing the small things that made me happy at the time like my favourite song coming on the radio or something like that 😂 I also like writing songs so my journals are VERY useful to come up with ideas hahaha. Really really enjoyed reading your post Maya! 💞🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahh, so glad you agree! I know – a while back I was obsessed (like really obsessed) with Cruel Summer and for some unknown reason I’ve scribbled down the lyrics over and over again pointing out things I loved, haha!

      Yes, that’s so true! Thank you so much for reading, Hreem ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • Hahaha dude I did the EXACT same thing with the lyrics of cardigan around a year ago because I was so obsessed with the songwriting 😂 Cruel summer is super great though so good choice lol ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

  8. I do journal almost every day. I keep a few different journals for different things, and I usually change things up every year. You mentioned recording what you’re grateful for, and that’s one habit I try to stick to every day. I start out my morning recording something I’m thankful for every day. It definitely helps keep my thoughts positive!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, that’s so true! Yeah, I’ve been trying to get to journaling about things I care a lot about and I’ve heard people keep prayer journals, daily logs & gratitude journals – they all sound lovely! That’s so amazing, I’m going to have to try that sometime soon! I’m so glad you like journaling, and thank you for reading ♥

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I also have a journal (just a blank notebook with about 200 pages filled with messy words!) and it is currently my fourth! I don’t really have the habit of bullet-pointing my thoughts but what works best for me is writing a lot in big paragraphs😂.
    It is my only journal where I have been able to write consistently ever single day which makes me proud of myself! I am happy you like journaling too! (I have the feeling that if I stop writing my thoughts down, I will probably not feel like my usual self because writing everything down has become such a great part of my life now)😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, thank you so much for this comment, Hermione! That’s so true and yes, it’s different for everyone! I know, paragraphs are so fun – you can just rant on and on and that’s what I always do. I’m so glad that you love it too! Thank you so much for reading and I’m going to check out your blog now!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I journal. A LOT!! And I love it. It helps me get rid of nasty thought ls, like just pour them onto the page, hold onto memories and relieve them or just for fun. It’s great. Nice post.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I used to journal quite a lot, actually! I kept super extensive diaries which I still love looking back on, but the older I got, the more I would write every time I got out my journal. So eventually, it just cut into my creative writing time so much that I decided to quit 😅 I might still write an entry once a year or so, but apart from that, my blog has mostly replaced my diary as a space to record what is going on in my life…
    I still miss journaling from time to time, but I love coming up with stories more, so this is what works for me! 😊 It’s cool journaling has been going well for you, though!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s