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How do you start writing a journal?

December 16, 2022 10 min read

How do you start writing a journal?

We store a lot of information in our thoughts, but we don't commit as much of it to paper. Having so many ideas and thoughts constantly running through one's head can make one feel overwhelmed at times. You will have things like to-do lists, hopes, dreams, secrets, setbacks, love, loss, and ups and downs throughout your life. Ideas come and go, and feelings come and go as well. How do you keep track of all of them in your memory? How do you manage to keep them in order? Keeping a notebook and writing down your thoughts in it is an excellent technique to keep your thoughts organized and cleanse your mind. Writing is a great form of exercise that anyone can do, and expressing oneself in a personal setting through writing is an excellent way to maintain one's sanity.

Beginning a New Journal

You simply need to be willing to write in order to begin keeping a journal. It is not necessary for you to be a good writer; all you need is the will to accomplish it. You don't even have to make a decision about what to write; all you have to do is let the words flow freely. After you have made the decision that you would want to start a journal, the following is a comprehensive list of instructions to help assist you:

Make a plan to write in your journal at specific times during your playtime. You want writing to become part of your routine, so make a plan for when you will do it. Create a timely calendar reminder for yourself by selecting a time and days of the week when you wish to write, and do this so that you won't forget. If you make it a habit to write in your diary at the same times each day, it will eventually become an easy and routine part of your schedule that you will look forward to.

What should you not write in a journal?

A snapshot of a contemporary calendaring tool that can be used to assist with the scheduling of times when you should keep a journal.
Find a comfortable spot where you can write.
When you're trying to get something written down, it's important to be in an environment where you can focus and concentrate. The optimal setting is one that is devoid of noise and disturbances. Give oneself permission to concentrate solely on writing without being disturbed in any way. Make sure that you can sit up straight and that you are not uncomfortable. It's always a plus to have a dedicated office or study space.

Retro effect faded and toned image of a man writing in a journal

A comfortable and secluded workstation, ideal for concentrating on journal writing and putting one's mind entirely there.

Penzu is a web-based journal that enables users to post entries from any computer or mobile device. It will make writing in your journal exceedingly simple, convenient, accessible, and organized, while also preserving your privacy. It will store all of your work and assign a date to it automatically, so you won't ever have to worry about forgetting. It is a wonderful instrument for writing anywhere and maintaining all of your work in one location at the same time.

You should close your eyes and think about how the day went.
It's okay if you don't know what to write about because that's a common problem. You have complete creative control over the content of your journal. When you sit down to write, it's a good idea to close your eyes and think about how you're feeling at the moment.

What exactly took place on that day? What kind of emotions did it evoke in you? Are you looking forward to anything in particular? Why? Consider the ideas and sensations that have been going through your head recently.

It is simple to begin a sentence with "I feel," "I think," or "I wonder," among other similar phrases. You shouldn't put any pressure on yourself to keep to a certain form or theme. The first few entries in your journal could just serve as an introduction to the thoughts you were having at the time. Since this is your own area, you should not feel self-conscious about putting pen to paper.

Keep track of the time.

Create a timer for the amount of time you wish to spend writing. The recommended amount of time ranges from five to twenty minutes, but it really depends on how much you want to write down. You will find that setting a timer assists you in maintaining focus and prevents you from getting carried away. It is easy to get the feeling that you need to write down every detail, but this will assist prevent you from doing so.

You might want to read over your entry again and add some more thoughts.
After you have done writing an entry for your journal, you should go back and read it over. After you have gone through what you have written and given it some thought, add a couple of phrases at the conclusion about what you have seen or what you have considered about the words you have used. If it's possible, please describe what you just said in a phrase or two. This is an excellent method for zeroing in on specific themes. One hand is shown holding a pen while the other rests on top of a complete sheet of lined writing paper contained within a notebook.
There is no better time than right now to get started on your free online journal than right now.

10 Suggestions to Keep in Mind When Keeping a Journal

Here are some suggestions to help you begin writing in your journal in a way that is both effective and consistent.

computer keyboard, journal, pen, cup of coffee

1. Set a schedule

As was noted previously in the piece, developing a plan and sticking to it is an excellent way to get started. Determine the frequency with which you intend to write, and then plan out your time to do it. Find a time that works for you to write, whether it be once a day or once a week, and make sure you stick to that schedule.

2. Keep it private

Because it is private, a journal ought to be a setting in which you do not feel self-conscious about expressing yourself openly and honestly. Penzu will keep your diary safe and secure by keeping all of your entries private by default and only allowing them to be shared when you give it explicit permission to do so.

3. Meditate

Before beginning to write any entry in your diary, taking some time to ponder on the topic at hand is beneficial. Go to an area where you can be alone and concentrate on your breathing for a few minutes before you start writing. This is a great practice for getting your thoughts under control and getting your head clean.


You should come up with different things to write about in your journal if you want it to be about a certain topic. You can keep a notebook about the Bible, your dreams, your food, your job, your schoolwork, or anything else you desire! You are free to begin jotting down thoughts about what you are interested in or what you believe you ought to be writing about in the next sentence. This is the ideal environment to stimulate your imagination and get your creative juices flowing. You can find a list of the many kinds of journals on the page that you're currently viewing.

5.Date your entry

Close up view of african american teen girl student writes journal

It is essential to date each entry in your journal so that you can easily determine when the entry was written. At some time, you are going to want to look back over your journal to see when the entries pertaining to the subject you're writing about were first added. Additionally, it will be interesting to look back and see how you were feeling at other times in your life. Penzu will date your entries for you automatically, so you won't have to stress about not being able to remember to do it.

6. Give your submission a title.

Make an effort to give each of your entries a title. This will assist you in navigating your diary and keeping the focus of your writing where it should be. But you don't have to decide what you're going to call it before you start writing. After you've finished writing, you may find it easier to think of a title for what you've created, but you should still keep this in mind.

7. Write in a natural manner.

You shouldn't feel compelled to adhere to any particular shape or structure when you're writing. Just act in a way that is natural to you. Keep on with what you're thinking, and watch what kind of writing emerges as a result.

8.Write rapidly

You shouldn't let the inability to write hold you back. Simply continue to write down whatever comes to mind. Continue writing because it is difficult to stop what you are doing and begin again. It doesn't have to make sense. Try not to give undue consideration to the words that you are writing down on the page. You'll be able to understand them at a later time.

9.Speak and write the truth.

Since no one else will ever read your notebook but you, you should write what's really on your mind. It is not a good idea to tell a lie to oneself. Be truthful in your expression of thoughts, feelings, and opinions. Be as candid as you can. You want the entries in your journal to be an accurate reflection of both you as a person and the period in which you are living.

10. Have fun

The act of writing in a journal ought to be a pleasurable experience. Have some fun and enjoy what you're writing while you're doing it. Keeping a journal shouldn't be a burden for you to carry out. It is important that this be an activity that you look forward to completing, so try to make it as enjoyable as possible.

Additional Suggestions for First-Time Journal Authors

The process of keeping a journal looks different for everyone who does it. Because we all write in our own unique styles and about our own individual interests, the experience is unique for each person. We are able to provide assistance in guiding you in the appropriate direction, regardless of what that direction may be. The following are some suggestions to help you get started:

1. Give some thought to the topic you want to write about.

female hands with pen writing on journal

Although the entries in your diary don't have to adhere to a particular topic or theme, it can be helpful to give some thought to the subject matter before beginning to write.

Do you wish to write about the things that happened that day?
Would you like to write about what you have planned for the following day?
Are you making preparations for a trip?
Are you currently occupied with a project?
Are you starting a new chapter in your love life?
Do you wish to talk about your family at all?
Determine the topic that you want to talk about, and then move in that direction.

2. Attempt to write with the help of a journaling prompt.

Try writing about something personal and/or creative to get you started if you are having problems determining what subject to write about. The following is a list of journaling prompts that you might find useful:

What is the earliest recollection you have from your childhood?
What is/was your very favorite topic that you had to study in school? Why?
Create a poem about the first time you met your future spouse.
What is the one thing that no one knows about you?
Who in your life has had a significant influence on you and how you live your life? Why?

3. Plan ahead

Ensure that you have set aside certain time each day to write. In this way, you will be able to start preparing ideas for what you want to write throughout the day while also thinking about what you want to write. You'll look forward to writing more as a result of this as well.

4. Practice

Try to get as much writing done as you can. The more you practice it, the easier writing will become for you. If you make it a point to form the practice of writing on a regular basis, you'll find that new ideas for entries come to you more easily.

5. Write letters

There will be times in your life when you will wish you had said something, as well as occasions when you will wish you hadn't said anything. Describe these events in your writing. Consider the process of drafting letters that you won't end up sending to anyone. They may or may not be directed toward particular individuals, but regardless, they are wonderful outlets for open and honest ideas and make for engaging entries.

6. Give alternative points of view a shot.

Writing from a variety of points of view can be an effective writing style. Choose a subject or an event to write about, and then attempt to write about it from the point of view of someone else, such as a parent, a friend, or even an animal. It is beneficial to one's mental health to consider issues from a variety of perspectives.

7. Upload some images

Pictures are worth a thousand words, and they often provoke even more thought. You have the ability to directly import photographs into your entries using Penzu; therefore, feel free to do so at any point, whether it be at the beginning or anywhere else along the way. You might talk about what's going on in the picture, the photographer who took it, what's missing from the image, or just what it means to you personally. Imagine that you are writing a lengthy caption for the photo.

8. Write at will.

Free writing is writing that lacks any sense of purpose, organization, or direction. This indicates that you should just take yourself to the page and let your imagination run wild. Just write down whatever comes to mind whenever the thought occurs to you. It is not necessary for it to make sense or to have a function.

To Get Started Recording Your Thoughts in a Journal Using Penzu
It's time to start using Penzu now that you've picked up so many useful pointers on how to begin keeping a journal and how to write in it.

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