I was introduced to keeping a journal when I was about twelve years old. My great, great Aunt had passed away and left a copy of a journal written by an ancestor of mine dated 1879. Her name was Sophia Hendricks and each page was hand written with ink and nib pen. Her handwriting was perfect; her daily entries were on her observations of life, inspirational and religious books she had read. Accompanying her writing were pictures she had cut from postcards, greeting cards, etc. each covered with tissue paper to protect them.
I was so excited with the book. It has been a treasured possession of mine for many years. I tried to copy Sophia’s style. It has been read by me so many times over the years, that the pages are turning yellow and is in need of being rebound has a few pages have become loose with wear.
The book was such an inspiration to me that I just had to keep a journal, and I kept up with the daily entries until I was sixteen. I had written a love poem about my boyfriend at the time. Then some family members got hold of it and proceeded to read it aloud. I never wrote anything personal in it for quite some time.
Over the years, I used it for goal setting and visualization of dreams and found it very beneficial.
Due to Arthritis and Depression, it became necessary for me to take an early retirement. It was then, that I decided to follow one of those dreams. That was to be a writer.
I took several courses and read many books, such as Julia Cameron’s “The Artists Way” in which she suggests that to improve our writing; writers should write three morning pages a day. This was to allow one to get the creative juices flowing, and the muddled thought out of our heads.
Writing these pages is a way of discovering or re-discovering the inconspicuous things that would otherwise slip below our radar. I found that writing the three morning pages also allowed me to work through some of the problems that had led to my depression and would suggest to anyone the benefit outweighs the time they take.
The idea is to write them first thing in the morning, I usually have my coffee or tea and my breakfast. By then I can focus on both my feeling and my writing,
To start keeping a journal you will need, a notebook. I try to find ones that look extra nice, not just a doodle book. One that can make me take this seriously. I then look for a nice pen; my daughter and I love to use a fountain pen. You will also need of course a good writing surface. If you want to keep your journal on your computer, some programs are available on-line. The following is one I have tried and is quite good.
flexible and you can create your own or download additional “Life Factor” packs.The diary features uses unique Life Factors that allows you to see how different aspects of your life affect your health and happiness, by plotting them on a graph, showing how exercise and diet affects your mood. They are completely
When writing a journal this is something personal, there are no rules about writing in your journal; you can write about whatever, whoever, and whenever you want.
You can write in it every day, week, month whenever you feel you would like to express yourself. Write whatever is important to you. There is no set time to write this is a very personal thing. You can use your special book, plain or lined paper, write with pen or pencil. Type your entries or just use a digital version like the one above.
Some people like me use their journal to help set long-time goals. Others use it to help focus on their thoughts. When they are put down on paper this helps with the understanding of them. If one is angry or confused writing the problem down in a journal, helps get it out and the understanding of your feelings. A Journal can also be used to help people explore their inner lives to improve their psychophysical health as I did when trying to understand my depression.
Keeping a journal is your story your feeling and life experience; it can improve one’s well being spiritually, emotionally and physically. It is finding and taking personal time for one’s self. It is a record of your life, a treasured keepsake a written scrapbook. When we list our daily thoughts and problems sometimes as we read it back we can see a positive side, and we see the things we should be grateful for.
The information you write could also be used to keep a family history journal that can be handed down to future generations.
Over the centuries there have been several journals written by famous people such as Ann Frank, Lewis Carroll, Virginia Wolf, George Washington to name a few.
Please let me have your comments and ideas, I will write a follow-up blog and include some of them in it.