5 Reasons I’ve Started Keeping a Journal, Again

“[Journaling] is like whispering to one’s self and listening at the same time” – Mina Murray – Dracula 

Ever since I was in fourth grade, I’ve kept a journal. Now let me tell you, these fourth grade journal entries weren’t exactly sonnet worthy pieces of work. It usually went a little like ‘omg, my sister is soooooooo annoying,’that cool boy at school talked to me today!,‘ ‘my sister is my best friend,’ ‘ah, my sister is so weird.‘ (Sorry sis). On Christmas, I would always look forward to unwrapping a journal so I could welcome the new year with a fresh start. Keeping a journal is just something I’ve always done. At my parents house, I have a collection of about 10 old journals and that collection is one of my most prized possessions.

Last year though, I just stopped. It had been months since I’d written anything and I kept thinking, I’ll do it later, until I stopped writing altogether. I thought ‘ok, it’s just something I’ve grown out of’ and didnt’ think much of it. Then last month, as I was doing some shopping, I saw a journal at a store and thought about how much I used to love keeping a journal. There was no hesitation, I bought it and wrote in it that night.

I may not write in my journal every night, but I’ve started writing again, and it’s something I didn’t realise how much I’ve missed. I feel like we all need a little journal by our bed to write in. I’m sure the world would be a much better place if we did. So if you’re thinking about starting a journal or keep one yourself, here are my 5 reasons why I love keeping a journal and why I wish I never stopped.

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My journal for 2016. 

1. You can express your true feelings

One of my justifications for quitting my journal writing, was the fact that I planned on blogging more, and blogging more real experiences and emotions. And whilst I believe I’ve done this to some degree, there’s some things that you just don’t want the world to know. And no matter how close you are to your best friend and while you might tell them everything, sometimes it’s nice to have private thoughts that you keep to yourself. You can express your deepest anger or frustration, sadness or joy and the pages will soak it all up. It doesn’t have to make sense and it doesn’t have to be sophisticated. It just need to come from you.

2. There’s no judgement

A journal is a friend. There’s no evil eye staring back at you as you write. Like I said, its pages will listen politely to you. Sometimes it’s just nice to express how you truly feel about something and knowing that you’re not going to be criticized or judged for it. It gives us the freedom to be ourselves and explore ourselves a bit more, which is a pretty exciting thing.

3. Disconnect from technology

Think about it… how often do you write with a pen and paper? Personally, I work in an office and spend 9-5 at a computer. When I take notes for uni… I do it on my laptop. And when I write/blog… again, on my laptop. The only things I usually write with a pen and paper is a shopping list or a reminded note on my hand. It’s so relaxing and unwinding to sit down with a journal, a pen and your thoughts and just write for ten or fifteen minutes before you go to bed. There’s no notifications to distract you, or likes to evaluate your work. Just put some calming music on in the background and let your words carry you away.

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Some cute little tips I’m trying to adopt. Source

4. Reflection

Let’s be honest, in our busy lives, how often do we get to take 15 minutes to ourselves and really reflect on what we’ve been doing, how we’ve been feeling and how we can improve ourselves? I believe the answer might be along the lines of ‘what, you get time to yourself?’ I really value my ‘me’ time and writing in my journal is a way I talk to myself and listen to myself at the same time. It’s like the quote above ‘whispering to one’s self and listening at the same time.’  And I truly believe that by taking the time out to be alone with our thoughts, to take a moment to ourselves and reflect is a great way to move forward in a focused and re-energized way.

5. Future is looking bright

By writing down where we’ve been, naturally we’re prompted to write about where we’re going. By physically writing down our goals, our hopes, our dreams, we’re sharing it. And once you share it, it only encourages us to keep on going. Checking in with these goals and values every now and again, is a great way to ‘stay on track.’ And even if we veer off track, we might even create a new path, with new goals and new ideas. Our journals don’t dictate our path or tell us where to go, they simply show us that we have the potential to go wherever we can dream.

Do you keep a journal? Is it something you would like to do? Let me know in the comments below!

These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things: FEBRUARY

February. You graced us with an extra day this month, and it still wasn’t long enough. This month was full on! With work being absolutely crazy and uni starting back, February was pretty damn intense! However I learnt a pretty valuable lesson this month. Because life was so damn hectic, I ran myself down to the ground! For the first time in years I got a cold sore. What the heck?! And not only that, but it stayed for three whole weeks! Three weeks! I took so many vitamins, used lots of different creams and tried my hardest not to touch it, but it just wouldn’t leave. And along with having a cold sore, I constantly felt fatigued and found it difficult to concentrate when at work. My body was screaming at me to just calm down and take a breather for a day. It felt horrible and it’s not something I want to go through again. This just made me realise how we need to look after our bodies, and when we need time out, we need to be strong enough to say so. Alright, enough about that. Here’s some of the things that got me through the craziest and shortest month of the year.

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Diary Goals. Source

My Diary

So I finally got around to buying myself a diary. I used to always write in a diary, however for some reason I just stopped writing. It’s something that I’ve always loved doing. So with February being a pretty stressful month, I thought I would suck it up and finally just buy a diary and get writing. The best thing is that the diary I bought doesn’t have lines. So I’ve experimented with some little drawings here and there too. Watch this space for more reasons why I absolutely love keeping a diary. I honestly can’t explain how beneficial and amazing keeping a diary is, so I’ll fill it in later.

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Speaking to 1200 year 12 students. No big deal.

Being a Keynote Speaker at Discovery Days

I wrote about my experience and what I learnt here. Quick run down – I spoke to over 6000 students over 5 days spreading my word and trying to spread some happiness and inspiration to some truly incredible kids. It was one of the scariest, exciting yet nerve racking experiences of my life.

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These lot! From left to right it’s Nicola, Tiger, Me and Chantelle!

Moving into a new apartment with new and awesome people.

This session, I’m living at the same residence but in a different section (a much nicer and cleaner section). I was so excited to move into a new place, but slightly nervous about who I would be living with. And as soon as they moved in, it was love at first sight! I’m living in a four share apartment with Nicola (Graphic Design student), Tiger (Engineering student – and yes… his name is really Tiger), and Sam (Medical Health Science Student). Plus we’ve adopted a few more housemates who practically live with us too! And I’m so happy that my old housemate Chantelle is one of them. Overall, I’m living with some pretty awesome people! #imagine #thedream

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Greatest roomies!

Sunrises and Waterfalls

So you probably already know I’m not the best morning person around, however I’m trying to change that. And after moving in with my new housemates, I’m not really getting much of an option. I’ve spent two mornings up at 5:30am to watch the sunrise and go for an early morning swim.  We also spent a day a day at Macquarie Pass (just half an hour from Wollongong) and it was such a beautiful way to spend a day off!

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Spending a day jumping off rocks and sliding down waterfalls at Macquarie Pass. For more photos check out my Instagram @aworldlyaddiction

More 21st’s

Again, 2016 is the year of 21st birthday parties! I went to my friend of 10 years 21st in Newcastle! It was so good to see her and everyone from back home! I also went to my other friends 21st who had a decked out bar tab in Wollongong. It was great to spend time with people I only see occasionally and have a free flow of beer! Thanks heaps to Mollie and Audi for the amazing parties and even better memories! Keep up the parties guys!

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Myself, Chantelle and Elly prepping for Mollie’s birthday in Newcastle!
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Audi’s 21st! Instagram frame and all!

Books

I read Escape From Camp 14 this month and I wrote a review about it here.

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Tunes

I have absolutely been LOVING Claptone this month! The perfect chilled out yet get pumped music!

Blogs and Vlogs

I’ve really been digging Hey Nadine. I’ve been wanting to watch a few more female vloggers and eventually want to move beyond watching just travel vloggers and watching people who vlog about important social issues. But I particularly like this video because there’s a few different travel vloggers talking about the pros and cons of female solo travel.

Quote

“Seek respect, not attention. It lasts longer.” 

This past month I saw some pretty horrible acts of attention seeking. It’s fake and everyone can see right through it. People are attracted to other people who are confident and true to themselves. Not people who act how they think they should. This quote has showed me the importance of self respect and respect for others, and to always be conscious of the long term effects of decisions you make now.

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And so concludes the month that was February. Uni has started and of course I’ve got plenty of things to keep me busy so I’m really looking forward to what march has to offer!