Journal writers understand the value of committing a few minutes every day to putting thoughts on paper. It helps clear the mind, improves focus, and grounds us in personal truth, to list only a few of many benefits.
Still, even a committed journal writer can get stuck in a rut.
Thankfully, it’s not difficult to enliven a journaling practice. Here are simple tips to help you do just that.
Change the Scenery
Try prompted journaling
Simply changing the location where you journal can re-invigorate your practice. It can be as simple as moving to a different chair or room. Journal outside in better weather or switch to the other side of your sofa. If you normally journal in a seated position, try reclining or standing. If you normally sit on a chair, try the floor.
Why it works: the brain has an evolutionary predisposition to laziness. As soon as your mind feels comfortable in a situation, it checks out. With fewer neural connections firing, creativity and inspiration can wane. Even a small shift like changing locations disrupts that ease and stimulates attention.
Changing your journal book is also a way to “change the scenery”. See the many unique journal designs in our catalog.
Try Writing Prompts
Writing prompts provide a launch-point for journaling. Our best tip for getting the most out of a journal prompt is to not spend any time thinking about it. Just put pen to paper and write (or draw!) even if you feel you’ve got nothing to say on the topic.
Why it works: a prompt is an imperative; it doesn’t allow your mind to think about the blank page. Our prompted journals are designed for this very purpose!
You can also find journaling prompts online or in your app store by searching for “writing prompts”, “drawing prompts”, and “journal prompts”. But first, read our article about good vs. weak writing prompts.
Get a Move On
Try movement-based journaling
Do a bit of gentle movement work before you settle down to journal, but not enough to get your heart rate up. Some simple stretching, walking around your home or yard, or moving to music will do the trick.
Why it works: the body is our built-in first-responder and our brains have evolved to override the body’s impulses. By moving first, we access innate wisdom and emotion before the mind out-thinks them.
You can hack your mind’s over-think with our movement-based prompted journals.
Change the Time
One final journaling hack is to change the time of day that you practice. This is another trick to override the brain’s natural tendency to “tune out” when it’s in a familiar or comfortable situation. We also tend to have different types of thoughts at different times of they day, so by occasionally changing your journaling schedule, you’re likely to get more out of your practice.