As a young person, I was drawn to journaling. However, I had a younger brother and two sisters who were also interested in my notes. So I destroyed some of my journals from my teenage years; although, now I wish I had saved them. It would have been interesting to visit myself in my teens. Still, I have kept many of my writings, and I am glad I have. I go back and remember times and events forgotten, and I can also see how often my emotions affected my response to what I imagined was important. Truthfully, sometimes I caused unnecessary pain for myself, but journaling gave me the opportunity to reflect on life, and each stage in life takes us on a new journey. So the journey starts where we are now, and it can be designed it to accommodate our personality, needs, interests and goals or maybe all of those things.
Express Your Uniqueness
No one person is exactly alike. We are unique individuals with some interests in common. Even in cases where identical twins have been separated, the influence of the environment has had an effect on the person. Therefore, journaling is a record of an individual’s response to life. In addition, we can learn by looking at what others find are effective journaling techniques. Depending on our needs, we can experiment and discover what works. Personally, over the years, I have developed a mixed media approach to journaling. I include materials, sayings, verses, and pictures or drawings to express my feelings. I encourage others to let loose of rules and any critical voices, inside or out, and just express your thoughts and feelings.
Exploring interests can be a joyful journey even during difficult times. For example, I love reading, art, poetry, nature, and growing in my spiritual walk with the Lord Jesus. So I usually have more than one journal going on at a time. I have a dream journal, an art journal, and a journal based on scripture readings. Sometimes they overlap, and new idea or piece of art is born. Also when I look back over what I have recorded, I can then reflect on my life or situation. In fact, a verse that has been given to me more than once by friends and family is, “The joy of the Lord is my strength,” Nehemiah 8:10. I do not think it is a coincidence, and I keep it close by as a reminder be grateful and joyful.
In conclusion, another benefit of recording thoughts, dreams, feelings, and creative impulses is that it can lead to new goals and adventures in life. I enjoyed my years as a teacher, but now I am exploring new things. It is never too late. Dream on, and let the joy and gratitude for life return.