Are you looking for a new way to keep track of your day-to-day life? Do you want something that is more fun and creative than a simple notebook or journal? In this article, we will go over 9 creative ways to use your journal. Whether it's making a timeline, using the pages as scrapbook paper, or even turning them into artwork, there are plenty of creative ways to make your journal work for you!
Journals are a popular way of expressing creativity but they also are used by many people for the purpose of meditation and self-care. Keeping a journal allows you to connect to yourself and look back on your memories, and to create new ones along the way. A journal can be used as so much more than a traditional diary as well. Your journal is unique to you and can be a big mix of things that bring you joy, help you get to know yourself, and allow you to see how far you have come.
The Benefits of Daily Journaling
- Thoughts and emotions that are organized and written down.
- A reduction of stress and potential reduction in anxiety
- Improved communication skills (from putting your thoughts into words on paper)
- A boost in creativity and problem solving ability!
- Improved self-esteem, self confidence, and self-love.
- Improved self-awareness and increased emotional intelligence.
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Keep track of your progress towards a goal
When it comes to reaching new goals nothing helps quite as much as seeing progress happen right in front of your eyes. Your journal is a great place to track the progress of your goals over time. From fitness goals to learning a new language or writing that novel you have always dreamed of, tracking your progress can be very motivating in all aspects of life.
You can find tons of inspiration online for different creative trackers to put in your journal. For a simple way to track a goal, get my Habit Tracker. (it's free!)
Have fun with bullet journaling
Making the most of your journal can be as simple as using it for planning or tracking the ideas and goals that bring you joy or enrich your life. There are plenty of creative ways to use it, from being prepped each night before bed by creating a schedule or checking how many hours you’ve spent working on specific projects. Stickers, coloring, and writing in your journals will make them into personalized works of art! I may be slightly addicted to fine tip pens and markers because of my love for journaling. Read more about the process of bullet journaling here.
Keep All The Lists
Lists are an amazing thing that can help you think, plan, and appreciate your life in new and amazing ways. One helpful way to use your journal is to keep a journal just for lists. Start with your ultimate list (of lists!), and then create lists for everything you can think of.
Here are a few simple list journal ideas:
- Places I want to go
- My favorite books
- Songs that speak to me
- Favorite Playlists
- People that have left a mark on my life
- Things I am proud of myself for
- Things I want to learn to do
- Hobbies to Try
Create a Dream Journal
Have you ever tried to remember your dreams and write them down in the morning? You can learn so much from dreams. Dream journals are an immensely helpful tool for achieving greater clarity and creativity. A dream journal allows you to preserve important storytelling details that often escape, while the story is still fresh from our subconscious minds. Record your dreams right after waking up, as these vivid memories will escape quickly at any time during the day when we're immersed in busyness; writing down things like emotions can be very telling about your state of mind.
Some day we will be gone, but the things we've written in our journals will be left behind. You can use your journal to write letters to your loved ones that they can read when you're not here anymore. Or simply write in the journal expecting that your children's children will be reading it. This sounds a bit morbid, but honestly I'd love to have something like this from my grandma who isn't here anymore. Think of it that way.
You can also write letters that you don't intend to ever give to anyone. Write to the ex boyfriend that hurt you, work through that old pain on paper. Then keep the letter, or tear it out and throw it away.
Affirmations are an amazing technique for self-love and self-growth. Filling a journal full of affirmations that remind you that you are valuable, you are loved, and you are worthy can go a long way to helping give yourself a mental boost. One technique is to write about a situation that is bothering you and then writing an affirmation to go with it to help yourself over the hurdle. Sometimes I like to choose an affirmation to focus on, and I spend a few minutes writing it out over and over again, to help cement it in my mind.
There's a trend recently of people taking their grandmother's recipe cards and having the handwriting turned into tea towels or coasters. Today, we do most of our recipe saving online, and I think it's sad that our kids won't have our handwritten recipes to refer to. So, use a journal to jot down your favorite recipes. The ones you can make from memory can be preserved in a journal forever.
Journal About Gratitude
Writing down what you are thankful for is a wonderful way to change your mindset on a rough day. When you are having a hard time finding joy on a particular day, look back at your gratitude journal to see all the things you have to be thankful for. Make this a daily habit to truly change your life. If you aren’t sure what to write about, try these gratitude journaling prompts.
Doodles and Art
Did you doodle on your homework as a kid? I still doodle on everything! This can be a creative way to relax and calm stress. Use your journal as a place to mindlessly doodle to help you relax on a rough day. If you are more serious about art you can still put this trick into play by using your journal as a safe place to create things that hold personal meaning to you.
You can turn your doodles into a whole art book if you want! This might be the most creative way to use your journal of all. Art Journaling is so cool, and can be an entirely different blog post. The possibilities with journaling truly are endless and I love seeing what everyone comes up with when they tap into their creativity. Even if you don’t feel like you’re the best at drawing, a journal is a perfect spot to practice all of your skills. You could even practice lettering, calligraphy, etc. So fun!
How will you use your journal?
Record an interesting quote, keep track of books you've read, or just make a scrapbook. You'll find that keeping a journal is great fun and it has lots of benefits. I’d love to hear more ideas! Leave a comment below letting us know the most creative ways you use your journals. Who knows, you may inspire someone! 🙂
Get a Free Printable : Journal Prompts for Tapping into Creativity!