Since participating in Karen Walrond's Path Finder course last fall, I've gone through at least a half-dozen pens and a stack of journals. In Path Finder, Karen advises to write two journal pages each day plus a to-do list, all in a 5x8-ish size journal. (She writes about journaling here too.)
What's the big deal about keeping a journal? Here's my list describing the top three benefits I get from journaling:
A centering routine. Most weekday mornings after my younger daughter climbs safely onto the bus, I sit near a window and scratch with stark navy blue ink onto my journal's smooth white pages. The rhythmic scribbling sound of my pen on the page helps me focus on the thoughts and feelings deep in my heart.
A catch-all for ephemera. My journal holds the day's temporarily useful bits, whether they're tangible (sketches, receipts, lists, color swatches or magazine clippings) or intangible (dreams, thoughts, emotions, ideas).
Personal pages. My journal faithfully serves as a purely honest and private outlet for processing my personal thoughts, emotions and ideas. I can consider various facets of an issue by writing out an idea or question before I decide whether to share my thoughts publicly, either here at L+E+S or with a friend.
These benefits have risen to the top of my list of what I love about journaling. If you keep a journal, what benefits do you gain from your journaling habit? If you don't journal, you're welcome to share your thoughts and fears. Comment below or contact me via twitter. I'd love to hear your perspective on journaling.