Journaling can be an excellent way to relieve stress, express your feelings, and improve mental and physical health. Writing in your journal has many benefits, from keeping you organized to helping you explore new thoughts and concepts about yourself, the world around you, and what’s going on in your life. At the same time, it can be hard to know what to write. If writing feels like a chore rather than an exploration, it’s time to shake things up and make journaling feel fun again.
Journals are very personal. They’re a place where you can be expressive and free. If you want your journaling experience to be fun, make sure it reflects your personality. Turn a boring old book into a work of art by decorating it yourself. Here are six ways to add creativity to your journaling routine and make it more enjoyable.
1. Take Inspiration
Inspiration comes from everywhere — your desk, a friend’s house, a coffee shop. The trick is learning how to capture it as you go. It means starting with a tool that can keep up, one that’s easy on your hands, your eyes, and your mind.
Pens are no fun if they don’t fit well or wear out after five minutes; notebooks are no good if they’re so flimsy that pages spill every time you jot something down. And everyone needs inspiration from time to time. That’s why you should always have a journal handy: It’s as simple as that!
2. Include List Prompts
There are no wrong answers here. When it comes to journaling, write whatever you want. Think of your journal as a place for capturing snapshots of thoughts and feelings without judgment or editing. It’s hard to overthink journaling! For example, one prompt could be: What have I done today? Was there something that made me feel proud?
Write about what you did today and why it made you proud. Or maybe it just felt like another day; think about those moments too! It’s just a few hours of your time, but writing down what you’ve done can help organize your thoughts for future brainstorming.
3. Use Poetry
Most people associate writing poetry with grade school, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use it as a tool for journaling. Poetry is all about carefully choosing your words—not being overly detailed, not providing too much information—and keeping your sentences short and impactful. Instead of focusing on sentences or paragraphs at a time, hone in on one word per line.
4. Cut Clippings from Newspapers and Magazines
Whether you’re into world news, sports, fashion, or film, there are lots of topics out there that can help spark some material for your journal. Look for old newspapers or magazines that relate to a subject you want to write about—maybe you’ll get inspired! Once you’ve found some potential sources of inspiration, cut out anything that stands out as being particularly creative and bold. These items are sure to inspire your writing.
5. Use Stamps and Stickers
To make writing in your journal fun, incorporate stamps or stickers into your writing. Place them at key points on each page so that when you begin to write about a certain subject or event, you can stamp an icon or sticker next to it. For example, if you were journaling about moving out of your parent’s house for the first time, a sticker of a bus might remind you of how much fun it was traveling from city to city, along with how surreal it felt leaving home.
Stamps are a great way to liven up a page. Simple ink pads might be all you need to design your journal beautifully. You can also get creative with stamps by using different designs and patterns. Make it colorful, too! Ink pads can be handy tools for adding fun color to your pages. Stamp onto a plain paper background or use special paper to add more life to each line you write.
6. Write with the Best Pens
Do you use cheap pens? If so, it’s time to upgrade. While there are plenty of reasons why a great pen can help your writing—the smooth feeling, improved ink flow, etc.—for many people, picking up a quality pen is just one more step toward productivity. And if you want your journal practice to be fun and creative, don’t forget about color! Don’t like boring black or blue? There are plenty of options out there.
The main goal of writing a journal is to share your thoughts with others. But why limit yourself? Try to find ways to keep your journal interesting and fun, whether through photography, drawings, or even baked goods. There are things you can do to improve how it looks and how you feel while writing in it.