How to Start Journaling

Free Journal Page Included

Pen and Paper Versus Digital

Journaling is a fantastic way to get your thoughts out. Choosing between paper journaling and digital journaling boils down to what your expected outcome is and preference. I personally use both and it just depends on what I’m doing and how I’m feeling at the time. 

Benefits of Pen and Paper

There’s nothing like opening a new journal and putting pen to paper for the first time. The feeling of paper journaling can be cathartic and relaxing, and it can help get your creative juices flowing. It’s also available anywhere you have your journal. Not having to wait for your computer or tablet to boot up and then get into your digital journaling program is certainly beneficial. 

Benefits of Digital

Whether you’re writing with your Apple Pencil on your iPad or typing away on your laptop, digital journaling definitely has many pros. Some people get the cathartic experience typing that many people get writing on paper. Being able to watch my word count and lock down my journal with a password is pretty cool. Also, knowing that I can keep years worth of my journals on my computer and iPad is pretty cool, too. 

Types of Journaling

Journaling can be about anything you want. Maybe you want to get your thoughts out or have a bigger goal in mind. If you want to start journaling, but aren’t sure what to journal or where to start, take a look at the list below and see if anything stands out at something you’d like to try. Remember, nothing is set in stone. One day you can journal about your dreams and goals, and the next day, you can journal about your day. 

-Gratitude journaling

-Goal planning

-Free writing

-Daily recap

-Dream journal 


-Guided journaling with prompts

-Art journaling

Things to Journal About

-Things you don’t want to forget

-Important moments in your day

-Gratitude list 

-Goals and aspirations

-Daily, weekly, monthly goals



-Important life events

-Dreams you don’t want to forget

-How you feel

-Places you want to visit

-Inspirational people

-News you don’t want to forget

-Things that make you happy

-What motivates you

-Things that made you happy today 

-What book did you just read, and what do you think about it

-What show are you watching

-Something you want to improve about yourself

-Your friends and family 


-Your fears and how you want to face them

-Something you are excited for

-A wish you’re happy never came true

-Foods you want to try

-Something you want to explore

-Random things that inspire you

-Pretend to write a letter to someone you wish you could meet

-A lesson you learned today

Journaling Tips

  • Just start. It seems obvious, and it’s probably easier said than done, but just start. Tell yourself you’ll journal one sentence a day. Lots of times, that’s all it takes to open the flood gates. 
  • Decide what you want out of journaling. This will help you decide what kind of journaling you want to do and when you want to do it. If your goal is to relax and get away from screen time, make your journaling time at night before bed and maybe journal a recap of your day or a small list of what you’re grateful for. If your goal is self-improvement or motivation, you might consider journaling your goals for the day or week as soon as you wake up. 
  • Use lists when you don’t know what to write about. Writing a list of things you’re grateful for or a list of things you’re proud of yourself for can be an easy way to journal when you’re feeling stuck. 
  • Don’t pressure yourself or make yourself feel bad for missing a day or not journaling as much as you thought. If it’s a goal of yours, definitely motivate yourself to keep it up, but be gentle with yourself. If you push too much, you may start to drag your feet and give up completely.

Journaling can be anything you make it, and the possibilities are endless. Make it yours. Make it work for you. Make it make you happy and fulfilled and complete. Have fun with it and just start. Feel free to use this free printable galaxy journal page. You can also use it in any PDF annotation app like Goodnotes or Notability.

Comment below and let us know how you use journaling and your favorite journal prompts!

Check out all of our free printables here.

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