Journaling 101: 5 Steps to Master Journaling

Your life is not set in stone. It’s something that you can change. The outcome of your marriage is also not set in stone.  It’s something that you can change.  One tool that you can use is a pen (or pencil). You can use writing to help you create the life you want.  Although our 30 day challenge is to write something every day that you are grateful for in your partner or your marriage, I want to share various ways of journaling that you might find of value.


Processing Emotions

A simple way to understand and come to terms with what you are feeling is to write down whatever it is that is bothering you.  Seeing the problem on paper can help you to find a solution to it.  I know that I personally find solutions (inspirations – answers to prayers) when I write in my journal.   It allows me to move forward more easily.  Another benefit of writing down the problems you are having or the emotions you are feeling, is that the next time you experience a major problem you can look back at your journal to see how you resolved it.  It can give you the strength to know that you are capable of handling the current problem because you were able to solve the previous problem.

Clearing Your Mind

Although I have not personally utilized this method of journaling, I have many friends who have and feel that it is very beneficial.  In order to achieve higher levels of thinking and problem solving it is beneficial to clear your mind of unimportant or irrelevant thoughts. A simple way to achieve this is to “Core dump”.

Core dumping is a technique devised by David Allen (Getting Things Done). List everything you need to do that day.  Doing so helps you to clear your mind and allows you to focus on the most important things in your life.

‘Stream of consciousness’ is another method of mind clearing.  Done first thing in the morning, each day, you write continuously without stopping to think about or edit what you are writing.

Julia Cameron (The Artist’s Way) advocates writing three pages or approximately 750 words of your stream of consciousness first thing in the morning as a way to clear your mind. This method, called “Morning Pages, is said to leave only those important thoughts you need to focus on for the day.  Again, I have not personally attempted this method.

Create a Record

As a young girl, like most young girls, I kept a diary. Diary keeping has been around for centuries and is a powerful tool for keeping a record of activities and actions. As you are able to re-read your entries, you recall not only the past but your thoughts and feelings.  This helps you gain further insight and understanding, as well as appreciate your strengths and achievements.


Keep a record of your achievements to recognize and celebrate them.  Different ways of doing this include:

Goal lists
To do lists

Don’t forget to record both big and small achievements.

Big Thinking

Did you know that your mind doesn’t know the difference between fact and fiction.  Visualizing yourself achieving your goals is important as it helps you to learn, grow and achieve success.  There is a part of your brain that will help you to achieve those goals that you clearly visualize.  Writing down your hopes and dreams allows you to visualize them in a way that can make them more real. Your written record of your big thoughts will help you track them, giving you a greater opportunity to achieve them.

If you want your life to change, then writing is a powerful tool. By using one or more of the methods above you will be creating a commitment to change and to self-improvement. You can set goals, hold yourself accountable for making the changes and monitor your progress.

In addition to starting your Marriage Gratitude Journal next week, think about how you can utilize any of these additional methods of journaling to help you achieve your dreams.  Let me know in the comments what you decide is the best journaling method for you.

Have an amazing day and we will visit again soon.



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