6 ways to journal even if you can't consistently write
You've seen various articles and listicles on the power of journaling. Here's one and here's another. It helps you keep remember and memorialize what happened especially if your short term memory is kinda crap. It helps you see your emotional patterns and if you suffer from some sort of mental health issue, it helps you keep track of your ups and downs. It helps you count your blessings. And so on and so forth. But not everyone is a writer and it's a struggle for some to actually write a few sentences every day, whether if it's for public or private consumption.
But worry not, there are still other ways for you to still keep the habit of journaling even if you're too lazy to write or if you can't bring yourself to pour out your deepest thoughts on paper or on your phone. Here are some of my suggestions.
But before that, let me emphasize that journaling can either be analog or digital (or both in my case), and it really depends on which you're more comfortable with. Some really prefer pen and paper, and some of my suggestions here will probably be best for the analog type. But I'll be writing another post about my suggested digital journaling apps/processes for those who want to take the plunge.
1. Listicles or bullet point journals
Sometimes you just want to list things down and not worry about coherence or structure. You can list down three things you're grateful for. Or come up with a different topic that fits what happened in your day and jot down five bullets to support it.
2. Photo A Day Journal
3 reasons why keeping a "photo a day" album is helpful
- It helps you remember the important/good things that happened months ago and if you're feeling down today, that can help cheer you up.
- It "forces" you to take photos for posterity's sake.
- It's fun. That's all.
3. One sentence / line a day
If writing down just one sentence at the end of the day is all that you can manage, then so be it. And if that one sentence happens to be paragraph long, then that shouldn't really be a problem.
4. Sketch journal
If you're more of the drawing or sketching type, then it's okay to maintain a sketch or illustration journal. If I had the talent, I would probably have one too! One of my favorite accounts to follow on Instagram is @bymariandrew coz she expresses all these very interesting things in simple but funny and cute sketches.
5. Bullet Journal
Guys, searching through Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, etc on how to bullet journal is a blackhole that I willingly fall into. There are so many how-to's, examples, videos, etc that you won't have trouble trying to figure out how to do it. The challenge is actually putting a structure to it and one that will not intimidate or hassle you. This is the Buzzfeed post that got me started. And here are some Pinterest boards you can follow.
Bullet journaling is perfect for people who love lists, notebooks, pens, washi tapes, etc. In other words, it's meant for someone like me!
6. Audio / Video Journal
If you're more comfortable just talking or even taking a video of yourself while talking, then why not do an audio or video journal? This doesn't have to be a podcast or vlog type, but just you and your phone recorder or camera, talking about what happened and what you felt during that day.
But if you really want to go big time, and if it's okay for you to have people listen in on you while you process, then go and make it public or selectively public. A lot of the YouTube stars now just started out with this and now they're social media celebrities. If that's your goal, then this is a good place to start.
Don't forget though that at the end of the day, your journaling goal should be clear. Whether it's to document your life or to process your day or to practice your art or to track your mental health or to just be creative in making memories, remember that it's for you and maybe your future children if you want something they can remember you by.
Any other suggestions as to how you can journal if you're not really a writer?