Creating a Journaling Habit

I-being a perfectionist-am guilty of buying a beautiful journal and never using it, for fear of diminishing its pristine pages. The neat binding and clean pages are too dauntingly perfect to impair with the mundane accounts of my life. As if the beautiful book is not given the respect it commands in my slovenly scribbles. 
For anyone who has found themselves in a similar position, I have noted a few tips for overcoming these insecurities and finally creating a journaling habit that sticks. 

1. Write about gratitude
One of the main things we all struggle with, especially in the day of social media, is not seeing our lives for how special they truly are. Gratitude can help tremendously in reminding us of all we have. Not only will it allow you to see your life for what it is, rather than what it isn't, it will leave you feeling positive and uplifted. 

2. Keep your journal close
Keeping your journal with you allows you to lead a more authentic process, as you decipher when the newfound ritual can be incorporated into your daily routines. Jot down notes on the world around you and reflect on them later. You might be surprised what you notice 
3. Don't be afraid of negativity
Journaling can be a wonderful tool for stress management. When you're feeling anxious or overwhelmed, take your journal somewhere quiet and note what you're feeling. Not everything in your journal has to be neat and beautiful. 

4. Simply observe your surroundings
I was on a walk recently with my sweet 5 year old cousin. She stopped in amazement, noting the wonder of a crack in the sidewalk. It's amazing all you notice when you stop and look
5. Try to write everyday
Don't put pressure on yourself, but the more you practice, the more you will benefit and the easier it will become. Find a moment when you are able to slow down and try to start with just 5 minutes a day. 
Photos and words by Alissa DeFrang
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