Unlike what is often defined by social stereotypes, journaling or writing a diary is not confined to girls alone. Whatever your age or gender, you can keep a journal for whatever purpose you may have in mind. For example, there are a variety of reasons why people keep journals and planners to keep track of their everyday activities.

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Some keep journals to write the deepest confessions they have in mind, while others keep journals to keep track of their progress on a goal, they set for themselves. Whatever your purpose may be, here are some essential factors you may want to consider if you plan to start your journal or writing on your planner this year.

Figure Out What You Want to Write About

So, before you figure out how you are going to keep a journal, you need to know your goal about this writing process.

What do you want to write about? Perhaps you want your journal to be a place to store your deepest feelings, thoughts, ideas, or maybe even your secrets!

YOU decide what you write in your journal. Remember that this is your safe place where you can express yourself freely.

Some people write what comes to their head at the moment. Whatever you decide to pen on the pages of your journal, remember to not dwell on the thought of a long blank page you have to fill up. A suggestion that many have found to be extremely helpful in keeping a journal is to start with the minimum amount of work instead of filling that blank page.

Meaning you don’t have to start with paragraphs long entries; you can start with at least a single sentence!

Yes, a single sentence. You’ll have no excuse to keep the entries regular and consistent. Once you get used to keeping a journal updated with regular entries of a consistent length, you can gradually lengthen your entries based on your preference.

How Do You Want to Keep Your Journal?

There are a lot of ways to keep a journal right now. First, you can pick the traditional medium with a pen or pencil and a notebook or notepad. But today, many are opting to keep their journals digitally, through their phones, computers, or tablets!

The advantage with these mediums is that since your journal entries are digital, you can access them anywhere, anytime, just by uploading them to the “Cloud”!

However, the disadvantage is that your journal entries could be potentially hacked without proper encryption or protection, and you may lose access to your journal, or worse. However, this can be avoided by following the appropriate hack-proofing steps like locking your journal with complex passwords and privately uploading them to your Cloud service.

But if you ask most people, they usually pick the traditional medium, the classic pen, and paper. There’s no school like the old school. In the digital age of things, pen and paper-based journals are still popular. 

At times, the enjoyment you get from keeping a journal rely on the type of planner you choose to write on. You may want to choose a daily, weekly, and monthly planner options of separating your plans. Those who are good in keeping things organized often choose this type of planner. Meanwhile, others may want to take a much freer option, using the undated type of planner.

Writing by hand, with a pen and paper, has been proven to have cognitive benefits no matter the age.

The key here is to choose what’s best for you.

If you feel you like the digital medium better, pick that one!

If you think the old school medium fits you better, choose that instead! Your journal, your choice.

Try To Update Your Journal Regularly

Keeping your journal entries regularly and continuously is key to maintaining a good journal. Try to set a specific time in your day to dedicate to updating your journal or planner. Setting aside at least a few minutes every day to update your journal will help so that you can keep your journal effectively.

Having a schedule will also help you remind yourself that you have to update your journal with an entry on the specific time of day you’ve set for yourself.

Why Are You Keeping a Journal

 Some keep journals to keep their creative mind and flow of ideas continuously running, while some keep journals to release thoughts that keep running back and forth in their minds! Using undated planners often give you a much freer option in writing down everything. Depending on your personality and process of keeping things in the right track, you may want to choose the right type of planner that offers you a better chance at recording things more effectively.

There are some who, every morning, write the first thing that pops up in your mind, whatever it is and whatever you are planning for the day. Then, write them down without hesitation. Many do this to wake up their brain’s creativity before thinking about the day’s anxieties, which usually block that free flow of creativity.

What To Remember

These are only a few tips that will hopefully help you start and continue to effectively keep a journal, however old you are, what your gender is, and whatever purpose you have for it!

Keeping a journal or a planner will certainly create a new wave of change in your life especially in terms of tracking what you have gone through and where you are going. Through this pattern of writing down words, maps to your dreams and other factors that help you see through your options in life, you will surely be able to take control of the situation while gaining satisfaction from your daily achievements, no matter how small or big they may seem to you.