“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” -Ben Franklin, Poor Richard’s Almanack
Journals are powerful tools. But many seem to be under the impression that journaling can be hard. The thing about journaling is that the more you look at it as a task, it becomes harder. Eventually, you’ll only lose the will and interest to do it because your heart is simply not in place. You need to have the heart for it. And if you intend to make a start on it, you can definitely learn to love it. Now, there’s no right or wrong way to do it. Your journal is your personal space. Take ownership of it.
Starting a journal also means taking accountability not only for your actions, but everything that encompasses your daily routines – your decisions, your time and schedule, your thought processes. It’s an umbrella of what happened in the past, what happens in your present, and what you look forward to in the future. With the right mindset, journaling will shift your lifestyle to the right direction. There are many advantages to journaling. And there are loads of skills to gain and learn. In this blog, we’ll go through some of its benefits and how it can help you.
It improves vocabulary
Words are very powerful. They can make or break opportunities. They catapult people into success. They can change the course of history. Knowing your way with words will take you to many places. Truth be told, not everyone has the innate talent for talking or writing. That much is a fact. And some people will be better at it than others. Just as there are people who excel in sports, sciences, or other fields. Vocabulary skills can be learned and can be improved. Writing in a journal taps into that potential. And as previously mentioned, your journal is your own personal space. You will write based on your personal experience and this is a comfortable place to start writing from. You can start with simple events or words. It doesn’t have to be anything flowery. Then you can work from there by looking up synonyms or contexts. With some consistency, for as long as you are writing in your journal, you can unlock that potential.
It keeps you organised
One key purpose of keeping a journal is for its convenience in helping you stay organised. You have a class? Take down notes. You have an upcoming meeting? Plot it in your schedule. Can’t figure out what to do next? Look at what’s next on your checklist. The advantage of having a journal is that everything is in one place. You might argue “Oh, I can just use my phone instead.” But there’s a degree of genuinity tied to writing them down. It’s like you’re holding yourself accountable. That feeling lingers. And it’s fulfilling to go through each task as you finish them. A journal implores you to pay close attention to your tasks at hand. It becomes easier for you to track things and prioritise urgent matters. It reminds you that whilst you are in charge of your time, you are also responsible for dealing with your duties.
It’s an emotional outlet
Your personal journal is your very own safe space. You write from your perspective based on your experiences. It is your narrative. And it’s important to highlight this: let go of your inhibitions and don’t be scared of being honest with yourself! Only by being honest can you truly write what you feel. Writing in your journal allows you to be more open and vulnerable. You can vent without any judgment. Having an emotional outlet is consequential as it’s difficult to have a burden on your shoulders. And dwelling too much on unresolved conflicts impacts your productivity. When we’re under stress and pressure, work or school can become too much. We lose focus and concentration, become indecisive, and overall perform poorly resulting in less productivity. It deals a heavy blow to our morale. We can instead practice a growth mindset and say, “How can I make this situation better?”
You can keep track of your goals
When so many things happen at once, we can sometimes lose sight of our progress. And that’s okay. If your hands are full, it means you’re doing something right! Keeping a healthy track of your progress puts your goals in place. You’re reminded of why you are striving hard. This is where your journal comes in handy. With a journal, you’re more likely to learn organisational skills and that includes learning how to record progress, achievements, and setbacks. It will allow you to see what else you can do to get closer to your goals.
A tool for creative outbursts
There are times when our minds would get flooded with ideas. And most of the time, it comes out of nowhere! When we get an upsurge of ideas, it’s best to write them down. The good thing about journaling is that the only limitation is your imagination. You can even make illustrations of these ideas to visualise them. You can make graphs, you can make charts, and even paste cutout attachments – there are loads of creative stuff to do!
Practice effective note-taking skills
Note-taking is a fundamental skill that often gets overlooked and underestimated. There is a significant difference between copying notes and actually being able to comprehend them. And this is an important distinction to make. It takes more than just eyesight to make note-taking effective, you need to be a good listener as well. You have to find the context. When it comes to note-taking, journals are your best friend! You have no rules here. A journal can make it easier for you!
Every bit of your time is worth writing. The good, the bad, and the in-between. Journals empower you to own your narrative. They exist to help process your thoughts. To keep you company when you need it. To organise your needs in one place. This is the very reason why we came up with our own journal. And we made this journal accessible, something for our students to take advantage of. Moreover, the UK Virtual School academic journal was designed with our fundamental core values in mind. Every page, from cover to cover, was specifically mapped out to make sure that it encourages the students to explore these core values. Make sure to take advantage of our academic journal and grab your copy here!