10 tips for Beginners to Keep a Journal
By Ravi Taneja (Co-founder & Partner Succor Trendz)
A journal is much more than a notebook. It is therapy. It helps ease pain, relax and make sense of things around. Many people started journaling due to a lack of socialising and human contact during the Pandemic, and eventually, it became a practice. If you are someone who wants to start journaling but doesn’t know where to start from, or if you get stuck every time you start, this guide is for you.
Keeping a journal or being consistent might seem troublesome to some, especially to those who are not in the habit of writing on paper. Kudos to you if you are still trying to give it a shot. Remember, you don’t have to be perfect. It’s your private place, and you can keep it any way you want it to be.
What and how much to write?
It is a question most beginners struggle with. Generally, people keep entries about two-three pages or even shorter. The point is to express! Whether you do it in one paragraph or consume five pages. Express, but don’t write too many details. Tell it like a story, like you are narrating an incident to a third person. Talk to your journal.
You can write about your day, memories, experiences, learning, something that touched you, and you can rant too. On some days, when you do not feel like writing anything, doodling comes in handy. Just have fun with your journal.
Following are some pointers that can help you maintain your journal and maintain consistency!
- How to start: The first page is quite special and is something you will keep revisiting from time to time. So, when you are about to make your first entry in the journal, you want it to be perfect and stuck there itself. So, here is what you need to do. Don’t make your first entry about your day or memory. Rather, manifest your dreams and goals. Write a little note of gratitude for things you are grateful for. Write a letter to your future self. Keep it short and to the point. Try not to dwell on details. Manifestations and gratitude emit positive vibes and are a good start for your journaling journey.
- Invest in the stationary: You need a pen and a journal to start the process. Invest in the stationary and select the one you feel connected to. The leather journal has an aesthetic look. It is a type of journal many people like. Find a pen with the minimal smear that writes smoothly.
- Start with 5 minutes a day: Journaling is a habit. Regular practice doesn’t require a lot of your time. Begin with spending just five minutes a day. Don’t push yourself too much. Let journaling come naturally to you. You can increase the time later.
- Set Reminders: On some days, you might forget that your leather journal is waiting for you to come to write in it. Life happens! So, decide a suitable time in a day whenever it is feasible for you to write, and set a reminder. Do not let anything break your journaling routine.
- Minimise distractions while journaling: In the above point, we talked about deciding a feasible time of the day. Well, while journaling, thoughts must flow effortlessly on the paper. So, it becomes essential to eliminate distractions. A silent, calm space and time are best to write. Many people prefer writing at night before going to sleep or early in the morning, but it’s not a rule. Decide whatever time and place suits you the best.
- Be Realistic: Keep your expectations real. You might feel like a hero when you take out the pen from your aesthetic leather pouches that someday, someone will discover your journals, and a great plot will unfold. Movies put these images in our minds. Be realistic! That’s not going to happen. So, don’t try to find the perfect words or a perfect experience. It can kill the consistency. Better to write one sentence than not write anything at all.
- Your journal, your rules: There’s this myth about journals. That they should be neat, beautiful and perfect. It is yours, and you can keep it however you like. Period! You can have a 100% Genuine Leather journal from the outside but can have a messy inside. Your mess gives it a personal touch; that makes journaling beautiful.
- Write for yourself: Don’t think too much about what you are writing. Write only for your eyes. Let your heart out on the paper. If you refrain from writing because what if someone sees, it will kill the purpose of journalising. Let it be about yourself alone.
- A list of prompts comes in handy: On some days, you might fall short on words. It generally happens when life is monotonous and there’s not much going on apart from your daily routine. You can dedicate the last few pages of your journal to jot down the prompts that come to your mind randomly. Keep them for days while you feel you lack words. It is one of the ways writers deal with “writer’s block”.
- Self-blaming is a big NO:While journaling on a bad day, you might not be feeling good about yourself and might want to blame yourself. Don’t do it! It’s a trap. Self-blaming can easily become a habit while journaling. If it does, you might even give up journaling. Take help from the prompts list if you cannot find anything else to write on but do not self-blame. Your journal is your happy place. Let it be one.
You journal for yourself. Make yourself a priority. Invest in you and your leather accessories. People who are in the habit of journaling for long periods experience life differently. The way they perceive things and react to situations differs.
If something or some point is not working for you, try something else but don't give up. Journaling is about expressing and exploring yourself along the way.
If you are looking for a journal you can connect to, have a look at what Succor Trendz, luxury leather brand has to offer. Our leather journals will have your heart.