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Tips- Getting the best from your Journal

  • Take some time and pick a journal that suits you (lined, blank pages, 8×10 or 5×7, etc.)
  • Use a writing utensil that is comfortable (some people like a computer if so stop in a password protected file.)
  • On the first page make a note telling people not to read any further as these are your personal thoughts and feelings
  • Find a safe location to keep your journal, this will allow you to be candid in your writing
  • Identify a “journal buddy” – someone you can confide in that you have been
    keeping a journal. Let them know where you keep your journals and whatyou wish to be done with them if anything were to happen to you
  • Find a comfortable place to write with limited distractions (sometimes it’s best to write when your loved one has gone to sleep or before they are up for the day)
  • Set your timer – an average write should take no longer than 5 minutes for the main write (some techniques may take extended time. I recommend using these only when you know you have 25 to 30 minutes to devote to your writing) and an additional 2-3 minutes for the feedback write (see description below.)
  • Once you begin writing don’t stop. Let your thoughts flow, don’t be concerned with spelling or grammar. It is important to get the message coming from your internal voiceAlways finish your journal time with a feedback write:

    Re-read what you have written and then write for 2-3 minutes starting with I am surprised by or I didn’t realize that or reading this I feel. It is this final write that will create awareness about the original write, give you food for thought and often give you the basis for your next write.

 *these tips are based on Journal to the Self© techniques
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