5 Benefits of Journaling: Curation

Ready to explore journaling and how it makes a real impact on your life? Good – because I can’t wait to share it with you!

Today I want to explore what might seem like the most obvious benefit of journaling – curation. Curating – think of cataloging, list-making, creating a resource to reflect back on. There are some surprising benefits to this beyond just getting it out of your head and onto a page.

Journaling is an act of curation. You can capture everything including:

  1. to-do lists
  2. goals and aspirations
  3. project notes
  4. details about relationships
  5. resources and research

From the honey-do list to the bucket list, the lists we put on the page are the quickest way to free our minds – get this stuff out of your head onto the page and then you don’t have to carry around the weight of it each day.

So, what are some of the benefits of curation? How does all this list-making help?

  1. Concentration and focus: Journaling frees you up. You’ve written it down. Now you can concentrate on what you’re doing. You no longer have to carry around that list of ideas and notes, tasks and dreams. Now your mind and heart space are freed up for present- moment awareness. No more worrying which is its own distraction. When you’re ready to focus on a portion of your list, pop open your journal and its waiting for you.
  2. Reflection: The mirror. This aspect of journaling is invaluable, giving a concentrated and safe space to really vet out your ideas, emotions, and situations from all angles. The words you write reflect back what to notice, what to wake up to each moment. You see the patterns and then start to ask: Mirror, mirror in my hand: Is this what really matters to me? Can I slow down? Can I speed up? Where is there room for adjustment and balance? Where am I trying to do too much or too little?
  3. Inspiration. What better way to capture those memes, quotes, details, and thoughts that create deeper awareness, motivation, and creativity? Enough said.

You can do this all with one or many separate journals for different purposes. I have an overall journal which captures everything from my creative work to my spiritual journey with notes about my process for both. Then I keep separate ones for project notes, writing inspiration, business tasks and ideas, and a poetry journal.

Journaling can be done on your phone through a note or text function, on your computer, and always, always, always it can be done with a pen in hand. For sketching out plans, I use cheap notebooks and composition books. The computer holds my writing journal – tracking my creative journey since about 2012 when I started my focus on long fiction and creative non-fiction. I use artist sketchbooks for my daily journaling. And I have a few others that get me going for inspiration when I need something funky, fun, or beautiful to scribble in which are peppered throughout my house, bags, and in my car because I never want to be without paper. And when all else fails, I send texts and voice memos to myself. Yeah, I’m a bit obsessed. Oh wait – it’s because I’m a writer. But you don’t need to consider yourself a writer to journal. Not at all.

It’s important to know journaling doesn’t have to be extensive to be effective. The very act of sitting down for even a few minutes each day to focus on downloading your brain, emotions, lists, creative inspiration, and whatever else flows gives you room to have more creative inspiration and much less head baggage to tote around all day..

Check back on Thursday for Part 2 of the Top 5 Benefits of Journaling series. I’ll be sharing these with you every Monday and Thursday.

If you’re interested and ready to take your creative life to the next level, I can’t wait to share with you my upcoming new book “Writing for Creative Awakening.” It contains 6 intensive writing and journaling methods to bring you greater clarity, creative energy, and connection. Crack open your creative life and do the great work you are here to do. More on this soon.

So, relax, grab your journal and pen or other devices you use and get to scribbling down those details.

Until next time,