Journaling 101: My Journal Collection

With so much going on in our lives, it’s important to have an outlet. An unfailing way for me to reduce overwhelm is by writing things down. If I write it down, it seems to magically disappear from my head onto the paper/screen. I’ve had many journals over the years to track and dump, and I’d like to share with you my current configuration of journals and how I use each one!


Bullet Journal

This is probably the most common type of journal I’ve been seeing around lately, on the internet and in person. I use my bullet journal for 4 main things: daily planning for busy days, habit tracking, health tracking, and memory keeping.

Here are 3 example layouts that demonstrate how I use my bullet journal:

Daily spread – here’s a simple daily spread I created. I follow a similar layout each time, including a section for a schedule, to do list, the weather, note-taking, and water tracker. It’s a working page throughout the day that I use it. I will generally do this type of journaling on a Saturday or Sunday over tea in the morning and work on creating a complete spread by the end of the day. While I love my planner for daily and weekly planning, it can be fun to do a more creative spread when time allows!33237673_868409043362564_759704376641060864_n2. Monthly habit tracker – this helps me to ensure that I’m taking time to do the little things each day, because these all add up to a bigger picture. It’s very insightful to notice when I fall off of a habit and helps me be mindful of my daily actions.33134459_868409110029224_991854956787007488_n3. Monthly stress tracker – this spread helps me to be mindful of my mental health. This is a new spread I just started this month and it’s been an interesting journey to track how I’m feeling stress-wise at the end of each night. I also have a mood tracker I use each day which has helped me realize how fleeting and diverse my emotions really are.33166025_868409006695901_3326583987593281536_n4. Highlights – I like to keep track of big events/things that happen to me throughout the year so I don’t forget about them in the long-run. I have a pretty bad long-term memory so I like to have everything in one place to remember. It’s important not to live in the past, but it’s also very important to acknowledge what you’ve done – which I have some trouble with, and this memory-keeping system helps a lot. I feel like I’m always moving from one thing to the next and committing a memory to paper can  help me slow down.33144227_868409073362561_2988242385458167808_n

Calligraphy Journal

I like to keep a little journal with me in my planner in case of boredom or inspiration for calligraphy. I’ve brought it out many times in the middle of a class when there’s a lull. You never know when an opportunity will arise, and it’s better than mindlessly scrolling through social media!


Brain Dump Journals

I have these two little spiral-bound notebooks that I got from Typo that I keep near my desk that have no specific purpose other than to contain my thoughts. I sometimes write little daily overviews to get things straight, do sketches for calligraphy projects, or more commonly brain dumps to turn into to do lists.33106476_868409056695896_1286095658633134080_nDaily Thought Journal

I picked up this cute little journal at Ross – I use it for journaling any thoughts I have right before going to bed at night. It’s become a part of my usual night routine and it’s really helpful to get me in a state where I’ll be able to stop thinking and start winding down to sleep.


Online Journal

Sometimes, you just have too many thoughts to sit down and write it with ink. I definitely type faster than I write and so I also keep a journal on my computer. I use Microsoft OneNote to keep everything because I can access it on my phone and both my computers. I like how you can organize the “notebooks” into “tabs” and the software is amazing in that you can add different symbols and tags. I have a specific thoughts journal on OneNote which I use for bursts of writing inspiration.


Journaling is a great way to express thoughts and record snapshots of daily life. I enjoy having different journals for different types of things, but this system is consistently changing as I begin to emphasize different things and find new, cute journals to use. I have built up an arsenal of sorts of different journals to use, and I cycle through them.

Question of the day: Do you have a journal, or more than one? How do you use it?

❤ Alicia

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