One of the best ways to keep up a journaling writing habit is to work on one or more journal writing projects, which can span over a week to several years.
A journaling project can help you get beyond writing daily diary entries (though that’s also useful), and focus more on topics that help you with your personal growth, and to document important and memorable times in your life, and the lives of your love ones.
If you like any of the following projects, please let me and my readers know which ones you find useful, or share some ideas of your own.
1. Reaching a Goal: The best way to motivate yourself to work towards goals is to write daily about the progress you’re making. Use your journal to plan out your goal, reflect on the challenges, and record your development and accomplishments.
2. Journal About Your Children: if you have small children, or a newborn, it’s a great time to start keeping a journal about their activities, experiences, and those cute things they do to bring joy to your life. Though family photos are great, writing is more three-dimensional, providing what photos can’t convey.
3. Book Log: Though we often read books for enjoyment, logging and writing about what you read can help make the book more memorable. As you read a book, simply write about the most important thing you remember at the end of a reading session.
4. Gratitude Journal: you have probably heard about gratitude journals, which are basically daily summaries about what you feel grateful for or about. Topics might include, job experiences, family well-being, economic success, your passions and interests, your health, and what others have done for you. Here’s a prompt to get you started.
5. Sex Journal: If you’re going through some hot or challenging sex related experiences, write about them. Here’s a list of writing prompts that might be useful.
6. Travel Journal: most definitely have your journal with you when you travel to different places. When you keep a travel journal and reread it later, you will be surprised how much of the details of the trip slip from memory over time.
7. Opinions and Comments: keep a collection of your online forum comments as you write them. If you keep a digital journal, it’s simple enough to copy and paste the content, and tag entries for later review.
8. Your Favorite Tweets: keep a collection of your favorite tweets, written by you and others.
9. Book List: definitely keep a the list of the books you read throughout the year. You might want to even challenge yourself to read a set number of books a year using the reading goal feature in Goodreads.com
10. Favorite Meals: keep a collection of journal entries about recipes you try out, and memorable meals you eat at restaurants.
11. Character Development: if you’re interested in fiction writing, keep a collection of journal entries from the point of view of a character for your novel.
12. Music Journal: sometimes we can love music so much that it’s not only worth listening to, but it’s worth studying. That’s what I do with jazz music. For almost a year I journaled about the artists and music I listened to. I still keep a list of some of my favorite new songs. You don’t have to write like a music critic, just write what appeals to you as a listener.
13. Job Journal: I have over 80 journal entries about my freelance writing work for other people. Writing about your job can help you deal with the challenges you face on your job. It can sometimes help you figure out why you should quit your job, or why your job is beneficial to you.
14. Six-Word Memoirs: the website, SixWordMemoirs provides a fun and useful way to write about your past experiences. You can both keep a collection of your six word memoirs in your site account, and in your journal.