The letter for today is J and my J has to do with journaling, one of my favorite topics. When you hear the word journaling, what comes to your mind? Psychology? Cuckoo? Lost marbles? Journaling is a tool used by psychologists and behavioral therapists to help their clients improve their self awareness, manage stress and improve their overall mental health. However, you don’t have to be in need of mental health services to benefit from journaling.

You may certainly want to use your journal to record the following: –
• Your moods or emotions, whether happy or sad and what might be responsible.
• Your plans for the day, or if you write at night, a recording of the day’s events.
• Anything that made an impression on you (good or bad) during the day
• Progress (or lack of) with your goals. My writing coach, Suzanne Lieurance of the Working Writer’s Club encourages us to track our writing progress by keeping a success journal.

As a writer, you may find a journal helpful in capturing those stray thoughts that occur almost out of the blue. You never know, they may be the start of a great story. You can also use journaling to help dislodge the dreaded writer’s block that hits every now and then. Or, if you are between projects, journaling is a way to ensure that you write something every day.

You may decide to keep a journal for a specific purpose, such as the success journal mentioned above, or a place to express your thoughts on a variety of topics. If you don’t know how or where to begin, that’s okay. Just write, and soon you’ll find the ideas beginning to flow. After a while you’ll wonder how you ever got by without your journal. Try it!

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