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I’ve Been Journaling Since the End of 2020. Here’s Why You Should Too.

Journaling is something I have been seeing slowly but surely become somewhat of a trend. All over TikTok, Instagram, and Pinterest, you can find prompts about anything and everything. As we all know, a lot happened in 2020; there were a lot of things to process, thoughts to be sorted, and feelings to feel. I was having trouble clarifying the jumbled-up mess of thoughts in my head and decided to give it a shot in early December. 

Does anyone else start their New Year's resolution before January 1 because once you think of it, it doesn’t make sense to wait? No? Just me? Okay.

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I started with finding a cute journal. I had a bunch of blank ones that accumulated over the years, waiting to be used, so picking one of those seemed to be the move. I ended up picking one my mom made — shoutout mom! No lines, a cute geometric cover, and I only use blue pen. (Couldn’t tell you why.)

Prompts didn’t seem like the route I wanted to take. So instead, I did one page, almost every day of "I am" statements. For a whole page, I wrote positive affirmations about myself that I believed or wanted to believe. And let me tell you, it worked. I let it all out for those five minutes of writing, and after some consistency, I got really comfortable doing it and finding enough positive things about myself to fill the whole page. 

A sample of some things you could find in my journal would be something like: “I am smart. I am kind. I am strong. I am beautiful. I love life. I am fit. I am working on _____. I forgive those who hurt me. I am healthy. I am happy. I have purpose. I am worthy. I am deserving of all good in my life.” I know it sounds pretty cheesy and maybe even ridiculous, but it helps to know (and see) that there is so much positive in my life! 

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This worked for a while! But then it got stale, I definitely don't ever force myself to journal every day. I wanted it to be something I wanted to do. So when it felt like a chore, I didn’t do it. Simple. Now, as of recently,  I prompt myself better with 3 things: "I am" (and then I list like above), "I am grateful for," and "I am working on." It’s a great way to check-in with myself while still being a little creative and have fun with it, and I’m not making myself fill up a whole page aimlessly anymore. This has been a good revitalization of journaling. While I still am not doing it every day, I am working on it because I know it makes me feel better whether it's right before bed, in the morning, or during the day! 

Here are some tips in case you want to get started:

  • Keep it near your bed or on your desk. You are much more likely to grab it if it's out and about where you can see it. 

  • Pick a journal and pen you like. For me, being consistent with the same pen is weirdly satisfying, and cute journals are always a plus!

  • If it starts to feel like a chore, take a break. Enough said.

  • Lastly, let yourself believe your affirmations. Until you believe you’re absolutely amazing and deserving of every good thing in your life — no matter how big or small — others won’t and it will be a true teller of how you treat yourself and let others treat you. 

XO, and happy journaling!

Rebecca Girshik

U Mass Amherst '22

Rebecca is member of HC as a senior OIM major! When she's not writing articles she's cooking, online shopping, hanging out with friends (+dogs), or staying active with her fam!
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