When I read a tweet from someone who says they don’t know what to journal about, I recommend Samuel Lytle’s exhaustive list of  101 Reasons to Write a Journal. This free guide is probably the most definitive list of reasons for keeping a journal.

If you haven’t clicked on the link yet, here are 10 reasons taken from the list that should motivate you to do so.

  • Relieve stress It is better to let it all out in written words then a fist slammed through a wall. Really.
  • Find out who you really are like, not who everyone else thinks, but who YOU think.
  • Grow personal empowerment. We are more in control of our surroundings than we let ourselves believe.
  • Help you understand that most limits are self-created and intangible. Those rules we follow? We made most of them and most of them don’t even exist. Find out which ones.
  • Preserve history. If generations before us had not kept journals, we would have a pretty limited view on the majority of history as we know it. Write what the price of gas is today, just so that you know you can give a good laugh to a grandkid down the road.
  • Learn how to start, tell and end a story. Do this every day for simple stories and you will be astonished how much easier it is when you write a big (fictional) one.
  • Destroy writers block. Like, obliterate, mangle and pummel. Only brick crumbs will be left after you do a free write or two.
  • Vent! Because your husband, your dog and your steering wheel only pretend like they care.
  • Remember events before you forget them. Where did I spend last New Years? Oh, I hope I wrote it down!
  • Daily diary for work I have actually had to keep one of these. Partly for reason 91 and partly so that I could show what I accomplished each day.
  • Dream diaries. Another idea that is growing in popularity. Keep it close to you at night so that you can quickly record your dreams in the morning before you forget them. One might even come true!
  • I’ll be adding some reasons of my own, but Sam’s list should give ANYONE a reason to journal write.


National Journal Writing Month