Five Reasons To Journal Write

Posted by admin on April 10, 2008 in Uncategorized |

Julia Cameron and Natalie Goldberg positioned themselves in the books “Artist’s Way” and “Writing Down the Bones” as journaling masters. I relate to these works in many ways. As someone bored by life on countless occasions, I see Julia Cameron’s words as a means of battling it. As someone who struggles to get writing on some days, I see the many reasons to journal and none not to. There are reasons to journal, mainly for the hope of seeing something inside that you didn’t know was there. You need to be no literary master, no Julia Cameron or Natalie Goldberg, to master all the reasons to journal. You just need the right kind of guidance.

A Letter to Yourself:
There is nothing quite like writing a letter to someone who truly understands you. Consider a letter to yourself as another reason to journal. You might not grasp what comes from the pen in your hand, but you will see it. Journaling allows you to see yourself more than any mirror.

Improved Work Performance:
I am in an “Artist’s Way” group where journaling is part of the discipline. One of the members said he saw more success while journaling than when he wasn’t. It opens doors in a way; it’s good for any business person. He’s an artist on the side. What he saw was, when journaling, something clicked in his head, he found more ideas and improved his work performance. Of course, journaling isn’t about gaining business sense. But it can be.

For the Inner Artist:
The part within you is waiting to come out. When you begin journaling there may be many doubts about this inner artist. “He wants me to do this and that, finish a novel, take care of myself, and …” “She wants me to send that story out, but it’s terrible!” What journaling does is provide an outlet for all these thoughts. Writing it down gets it on the page.

It doesn’t matter if you are a freelance writer or a painter. There is something to be said for expressing this inner artist. And you need no one telling you to write-it must somehow come from within. The pages will guide you in a sense, much as reading does, to new thoughts and new takes.

For Ideas:
The number one reason I journal is that the pages allow me to make sense of my ideas. Certain artists need some quiet space to think. Journaling is a perfect solution. Science fiction novelist Philip K. Dick would write a book in two weeks or a month, sit in quiet for six months, writing only in his journals, and then go back to the page. His was an interesting form of journaling, but he wrote things down no matter what he did. Every day he had some crazy idea of the world and what reality is.

Future Hopes:
You will set career goals in the journal. It will provide an outlet for all your future hopes. Something will come out you didn’t know was there. Maybe you want a child; maybe you want a new career. The journal allows you to think on all this future hopes in a logical way, expressing your point of view to the future you. Some day, maybe a few years from now, you can go back to the journal and see a portrait of you from another day. That’s what makes it so fun. That’s why writers like Julia Cameron and Natalie Goldberg believe so much in the journal. I believe Philip K. Dick was different-he wanted to somehow make sense of what he was on the page.

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Whatever your position in life, a journal can be something close to your heart. It can tell the future you to work harder, the past you to take it easy, and the present you to say what you want. If you want something, write it down. If you don’t, write exactly that. The beauty of journaling is there is no such thing as a poor piece: everything has meaning.

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