7 JOURNALING TIPS FOR BEGINNERS
Journaling is not just a big trend, but research shows that it has profound health benefits and can help with personal development. I’ve been journaling for a while now and in this article, I’m sharing my 7 best journaling tips to help you make it a habit that has the potential to change your life!
What is Journaling?
Journaling, essentially is simply keeping a written diary on a regular basis. The type of journaling I’m referring to here are daily journals which are aimed to increase happiness, make you more grateful and overall help with personal development and well-being. Since it’s something you should ideally be doing daily, I’m listing my journaling tips for beginners here.
There are many ways of how to journal and generally speaking, there is no wrong or right way to do it. A very popular structure is to set away a few minutes in the morning (gratuity & goals), and in the evening (reflection) to consciously think through your day.
One of the most popular journals out there is The Five Minute Journal by Alex Ikonn but you can also find many free templates out there to help you get started. I personally use the 6-Minute Journal which is available in English and German.
Journaling Tips for Beginners
Without further ado, here are my 8 Journaling Tips for beginners, to help you create this valuable habit:
- Keep your Journal somewhere visible
- Include it into your Morning Routine
- Journal in the same Spot every Day
- Use a nice Pen and Journaling Book
- Take your Journal everywhere
- Don’t Overthink!
- Commit for 66 Days
Watch my Video I made on this topic here:
1. Keep your Journal somewhere visible
This is one of the best journaling tips I have – keep your journal somewhere visible! It’s so easy to forget because writing into a journal is something so “small”. But the key to creating a new habit is to do it over and over again. So make sure you keep your Journal somwhere where you can see it when you wake up and when you go to bed.
I for example keep it open on a desk next to my bed, so that when I wake up I see the journal and am reminded to write into it. After doing my morning journal and making my bed, I put the journal onto the bed so that in the evening I’m reminded to journal again at night.
This is by the way also the reason, why I’m a big believer of physical journal books. If you use an app, it’s easy to forget or to miss reminder notifications.
2. Include it into your morning routine
I’ve kept a regular morning routine for a long while now, so including journaling into that routine was a no-brainer. Don’t worry if you don’t have a set morning routine! You can easily link it to a habit that you’ve already created, e.g. writing into your journal every day after you brush your teeth or while you have your breakfast.
3. Journal in the same spot every day
Writing into your journal at the same spot is another of the best journaling tips for beginners I have. Journaling in the same spot will make it easier to make it a habit and stick to it long term, which in the end is the goal of starting a journal in the first place.
Chose a place at home or at work where you write into a journal. This can be for example your desk, bed or a special chair you have at home.
4. Use a nice pen and journaling book
When journaling, I use the same pen and journaling book every day. Using a nice pen and book will make the experience even more enjoyable and something to look forward to every day!
When I first gave journaling a shot, I printed out some pages that I downloaded and just used any pen or pencil that was lying around. This was not a pleasurable experience and I actually gave up journaling after a few days.
5. Take your Journal everywhere
Make sure to take always have your journal with you, no matter if you’re on holiday or just gone for one night. It’s easy to think that you’ll just fill out the missing day when you’re back, but chances are that you’ll forget and slowly let this beneficial habit slip.
6. Don’t Overthink!
Since journaling is a daily task, it’s easy to overthink what to write into it every single day. Try to not overthink and just write down what comes to your mind!
The idea is to really take some time to consciously think about your day – you don’t have to write something new or groundbreaking into your journal every day. Just go with the flow!
Journal for Yourself – not anyone else
Don’t be ashamed or scared of what you write in your journal. It’s a diary for your, so make sure to write it for yourself – not anyone else!
Keep it private and use it as a tool to naturally let your thoughts go onto paper so that you can revisit them for yourself whenever you feel like it.
7. Commit for 66 Days
Research has shown, that a habit is created after doing it 66 days consecutively. Aim to get a 66 day streak in and you will notice that journaling daily will become easier and easier until you almost don’t even have to think about it anymore!
Give it a shot – it could change your life!
I hope that these journaling tips for beginners help you implement this easy yet effective habit. If you implement the tips above, I promise you that you will have an easy time journaling daily and starting a habit that can help you become a happier and more grounded person.
In the end, I think the most important thing is to remember that you’re doing this for yourself, not anyone else. Give it a good shot of at least a month, ideally 66 days, to see how you like it!
The journal I’m using is the 5-Minute journal and really love it – additionally to daily journaling pages, it gives you weekly and monthly check ins with very helpful reflection questions. Check it out here:
Hi, I’m Alberto Nodale.