If you’re like me, you’re a writerly/artist type who guards your hoard of empty notebooks with the fury of a Librarian who just popped a button off their favorite cardigan. But sometimes we do want to actually write in those journals, don’t we?
I love journaling. But with work and my freelance writing and my other projects, I don’t do well journaling every day. I want journaling to be a relaxing endeavor that I can do when I feel like it. So I wanted to share some of the journals I write that you don’t have to keep up with every day, or every week. Take these ideas and adjust them to your routine and needs!
- Muse tracker
I’m a writer so I’m always looking for new inspirations and writing down ideas for potential stories. But I’ve noticed that my muse thrives in other areas of my life as well. When I pay attention, the little dots of the Universe connect in really positive and helpful ways. So I’ve started tracking my muse whenever I really get into something: a symbol or a color, a mood or a song. I don’t force myself to find something to put in my muse tracker every day or every week, just when something strikes me enough to pay attention. Sometimes it’s often–several times a week. Sometimes it’s not–maybe once every couple of months. Some years I’ve also done my tracking by season.
In Spring of 2018 one of my muses was fire. It seemed everywhere I looked this element was popping up. I felt rejuvenated at bonfires and lit candles to work or read. A year later in Spring 2019, I saw Cardinals everywhere and they became my own personal symbol that things were going right when I saw one. When I looked back on my muse tracker, I noted the first Spring was all about rebuilding and starting over and the second Spring was taking flight and beginning to flourish. So I wrote an entry connecting the two symbols, comparing the year to a Phoenix rising from the ashes. Since then I’ve made all sorts of connections and observations about my life I wouldn’t have if I hadn’t kept this journal.
I use a bullet journal for this, a lot like this one.
- All about the eats
I haven’t started this journal but I am planning to soon. I need to get more efficient and healthy with my meal planning, especially lunches for work. So I’m going to make an “eats” journal with various sections. In one section I will list ideas for snacks that are easy to prepare and transport. My goal is to be able to refer to the list so that I can go for two or three months without recycling items (I get bored with the same thing over and over.) The next section will be ideas for meal components so I can choose three on the list to make one meal and take for lunch. I hope this will encourage me to stick with healthy meal combinations and give me direction for grocery shopping and meal planning for the week. The last section will be recipes that I’ve been meaning to write down and that I can add to in the future. Recipes from family or friends but also when I just want to chill out and flip through a stack of magazines or cook books from the library and write down the few recipes I like. It will also be handy for writing down recipes I see on social media.
I hope keeping a big picture journal will be more encouraging than sticking to a rigid diet or schedule for meal planning. I’m looking at getting this one. I love the vintage vibe!
- Get sexy
You might want a diary-style notebook with a lock on it for this one 😉 But if you’re comfortable with the idea, I highly recommend keeping a journal with all sorts of sexy thoughts. You can feel free to do whatever you want with this.
I usually break it down by week. I do keep track of when I have sex and how many orgasms I have. I also note my mood, my pain levels, my stress levels, as well as my menstrual cycle. Since sex is rarely talked about as part of overall wellness, these observations have actually been helpful when I start or stop new medications or when I’m tracking other medical conditions.
But I also write little snippets of fantasies, notate things that struck me as sexy, or song lyrics that I associate with eroticism or pleasure. I’ve also dabbled in dissecting the meaning behind what turns me on, or tropes I enjoy in romance, and used that to shed light on other aspects of my psyche.
But you can do whatever you like! Copy down erotica or romance passages you love. Drabble some erotica of your own. Paste in pictures from magazines to make a fantasy inspiration board. Make a sexuality bucket list. Log sexy fanfictions you’ve read. Collect sexually empowering quotes or poems. Draw and sketch things you find beautiful. Reflect on positive sexual experiences and cultivate the things you need to have a pleasurable and fun sexytime. Have fun!
- Save your books
I used to underline in all my books and make notes in the margins. Now I try to keep my books nice so I can loan them to other people or donate them when I inevitably have to weed my personal library to make room on my shelves.
I keep a couple different notebooks to write down my notes from the books I read. One is specifically for fashion/style/and home and I have another for sociology/psychology/personal-growth. I write down lines from the books but also my personal thoughts or how these books help me.
You could do this with fiction as well, writing down the lines that really resonate with you and journaling about elements of the book you connected with.
These notebooks are of nicer quality and fit on my bookshelf, similar to this one, to keep for the long-term.
- Professional lessons
My first job as a library clerk I was wide eyed and so inexperienced. But I wanted to improve. One day I wrote down a situation I observed at work and how I wished it had been handled better.
From then on I decided to keep a journal on things I learned in the workplace. The good, the bad, and the ugly. This has proved to be very valuable in cementing lessons and polishing my professionalism.
A word of advice, though: keep your eye on improvement not just complaining. Your journal probably doesn’t need to be an immortal home for grudges. Not all uncomfortable situations need to be remembered in excruciating detail. Focus on the lessons. And don’t forget to log your victories as well!
This journal is also a good place to write down empowering quotes about work and lessons from books, articles, and videos about business. Whenever I watch a TED talk I have this notebook nearby! Here’s one that really exudes the pro vibe.