Self-Care Sunday #11: Journalling

Words: Emily Cliff

We can finally say it, the sun is out! And with a milder weather comes the feel-good feelings that only a nice dose of sun in Britain can bring. The darker days are coming to a close and with the fresh breeze, all of the winter blues seem to just be floating into oblivion. Self-Care Sunday aims to be an outlet for everyone when they’re feeling a little blue and under the weather and while we aren’t your licensed professionals, we aim to give you the tools you need to have the perfect day, to set you up justin time for the week ahead. This week we are talking about journaling. So dust off your craft supplies and get out that notebook you swore you would use when you bought in 2012 and let’s get journaling!

Write here, write now. Image: Emily Cliff

In a time like this we can all say we know how it feels when we get a little overwhelmed by our emotions. With no set routine and rules that are ever changing it can get overwhelming and it can be incredibly hard to find an outlet for those emotions most of us didn’t even know we were holding onto before the pandemic. Journaling is a brilliant way to channel those emotions and to get them out on a page. Journaling can take many forms so here’s our top 3; the creative journal, the bullet journal and the messy journal (or free writing journal). 

A window on what to journal about… credit: Emily Cliff

Starting at the top, the creative journal. Channeling your emotions into creating something creative and visually pleasing is a brilliant way to get your emotions out if you get hit with writer’s block, or even if you just don’t know where to start. The world of journaling can be very daunting when you first step in and the creative journaling path is perfect for if you are just starting out. With this option you can choose to theme it around your mood, or just something you think will be nice to look back on. If you choose to center it around your mood you can create a colour code key on the opening page of your journal so you know which colour corresponds with which mood. This way of journaling is almost like creating a scrapbook. You can use magazine cut outs and pieces of scrap paper and even different fabrics to create a wide range of textures. When you do this issensory heaven and it gives you a way to be artistic, (especially if you are anything like me and your stick man would have Leonardo Da Vinci rolling in his grave) 

Next in line on our list is the bullet journal. This type of journaling is brilliant if you want to stay organized. This type of journal is every Pinterest lover’s dream. If you are quite artistic and love to doodle this is the type of journal for you. You can theme each month with the seasons or the holidays that are happening that month. Its a great place to track habits, track moods and you water intake and you have complete creative freedom. Bullet journals double as a space to be creative and as a personal assistant. You can use it as a diary to keep track of appointments and birthdays, or you can just as easily use it as a doodle space. Use the free and spare pages to de-stress by adding little doodles and experimenting with fonts. If you aren’t so good at the free hand stuff, a wide range of shops on Etsy have stamps which do all the hard work for you and still look as good as the bullet journals you see all over Pinterest. 

Finally we have the messy journal, or as some like to call the free writing journal. This type is my personal favorite because it really doesn’t matter what you write. Free writing is the perfect form of expression if you just need to get all of your thoughts and feelings out on a page. It doesn’t have to make grammatical sense, it doesn’t even have to make sense at all, it could just be a word association with your brain and your pen. Free writing is all about getting out what you feel in the present uncensored and unfiltered. The beauty about this type of journaling is that it is completely your own, it’s your brain written down on a page, and it will differ from day to day and it won’t be consistent, but within the mess there is something incredibly beautiful, you are being honest with yourself. 

More source materials to get started. Credit: Emily Cliff
(Amy, if you’re reading this pls don’t kill me for posting a baby photo of you)

Journaling is amazing if you are looking to get some more structure into your life. It sets you up to the day ahead and it forces you to stop and think and be really present with yourself. Prompts can even be as simple as reciting your goals, what you had for lunch that day or even the song of the day. So this Self-Care Sunday pop your face mask on and open a book and let your mind run free. 

Step into the world of Etsy Journals here.

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