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1. Have a really cute journal.

This really does matter more than people think! There's just something about having a cute place to share your thoughts and experiences that makes you 100% more motivated to write things down. Target has some pretty dang cute journals-- that's probably my go-to place when it comes to journal-buying. But I also came across this little shop on Provo Center Street that sells old books that have been repurposed into journals (so obsessed with it, too). I have two journals in line waiting to be written in after I finish the one I'm currently working on... I have a problem. 

2. Give life to your pages.

I personally use stickers, highlighters, and self-drawn cartoons to add a little bit of flare to my own journals. I also love to tape in sweet notes from loved ones, Polaroid photos of events that took place that day, you know, to keep things interesting. It makes it more fun to journal when I'm being more creative about it-- plus it makes the journal way more fun to read back through once you've finished it and after it's been sitting on a dusty old bookshelf for a couple of years. 

3. Put stuff in there that has no place but doesn't belong in the garbage can.

The broken wristband to that one concert you went to with that really cute boy that ended up becoming your husband, the family Christmas card with the cute photo of everyone sitting on the front porch before thanksgiving dinner, the collection of photos of you and your lover from the photo booth at your best friend's wedding, the crayon-drawn pictures your three-year-old niece has for you every time you come to visit-- that kind of stuff. 

4. Don't worry about playing catch up. 

If you haven't journaled in two years, start today. But don't worry about writing about those two years you skipped. Starting today means writing about today. Don't feel like you have to "catch up" on those two years you skipped-- you'll be overwhelmed and ready to quit before you even start. Just worry about right now and somehow it all works out. 

5. Find a regular time in your schedule that works for you.

Whether it's once a day, once a week, or simply whenever you can't seem to fall a sleep-- designate a time that works for you and then stick to it. I always take my journal with me to church and write about the week as I sit and wait for things to start. That works well for me! I also like to write little snippets of my day before I turn off the lights for the night and go to bed. But everyone is different! Be a little experimental with journaling times and you'll find something that works best for you.

6. Start small and work your way to bigger things.

If you've never actually finished a journal, you need to. There's this little mental block that keeps people from journaling well and it's honestly just the fact that they've never consistently done it and have never finished a journal. So go get yourself a journal-- a dainty, cute, little journal-- and STICK WITH IT so you can finish it and feel the wave of excitement that comes from accomplishing your first journal! Then slowly work your way up to bigger journals-- you'll surprise yourself with how much you actually have to write down once you consistently start doing it. 

7. Use one journal for everything.

If you're like me, you have a journal-purchasing problem and you can always justify reasons why you need another journal. "I need a church journal.... a bed-time journal... a gratitude journal...." ect. You get the idea, right? But I've come to learn that, especially when you haven't ever finished a journal before, it's really beneficial to just put all of your thoughts into one little book. Pros: you finish the journal faster (because you're writing in it more frequently), you can easily find all the different aspects and details of your life that were going on during that period of time in one place, and you don't have to keep track of ten different journals. Win win. 

8. Find the right pen(s).

What makes you more inclined to write in your cute journal? A writing tool that makes your heart want to sing! My personal pen of choice just so happens to be a pen I came across while I was living in Korea (GUYS, Korea wins at all things office supply + cutesy). They have a 0.5 width (which is smaller than anything you can find in America, I swear) and they write so smoothly! I kid you not, these pens changed my life in so many ways. You can buy my most-favorite magical pens on amazon HERE, if you so desire. I really do swear by them, though. All of my friends have stolen at least one of them from me at some point in time, if that means anything to you (they're definitely steal-worthy). 

9. Don't take it too seriously.

I think one of the things that really turns people away from journaling is just the fact that it's "too much of a commitment." But when it all comes down to it, journaling is what you want it to be. Write one word a day, if you want. Heck, write one word a year if you want. But don't get to the point where you aren't writing because you are taking the whole journaling thing too seriously-- you'll never regret recording the events of your life but you'll someday regret the things you forgot because you never took the time to write it down. 

10. No rules, no problem. 

There aren't any rules to journaling. No one else can dictate what you do, how you do it, or when you do it. You just figure it out on your own through a whole lot of trial and error. When it comes to journaling, though, there's really no wrong way to do it! There's no right way to do it either. You just kind of do it-- whatever that may mean to you. But don't get all tied up in imaginary journaling rules that you've made up for yourself (unless, of course, making journaling rules actually works for you...), don't beat yourself up because you're not "doing as well as you'd hoped," just do it. Just journal. And you'll live happily ever after. 

xx

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