‘How do you manage to fit journaling into a daily plan? Journaling takes a lot of time in my experience and I know that is a reason for lots of people to not start journaling or finding it hard to journal as often as they’d like to.’ @rodhinee
This is a fairly common question, and I think it’s important, before anything else, to consider why you would feel like this. For me, setting expectations is the quickest way to kill my interest in being creative or my motivation to pick up a pen. In an ideal world, I would love to be able to create and write daily, but a lot of the time I simply don’t have the time (or when I do, I don’t feel like it – and that’s okay!). Here are some tips for utilising the little pockets of time in your day (or even just at the weekend!) in order to develop a habit of journaling. I think the most important thing to remember is that small progress is still progress. Please don’t get disheartened! After all, we’re just here to smush some paint around, get our hands covered in glue and glitter, and write out whatever we like – no one is judging you, and comparison is the thief of joy!
YOU CAN ACCOMPLISH A LOT IN FIVE MINUTES
If you’re anything like me, you might not bat an eyelid at scrolling through social media for five minutes in between tasks, on a break or before you need to be somewhere. You could use this time instead to create. Now, although I have said you can accomplish a lot in five minutes, I don’t mean just in one five minute session. Five minutes here and there over the week will add up, and by the end of the week you’ll find yourself with a finished spread! Day one, you could spend 5 minutes giving your page a wash of watercolour before setting it aside to dry. Then the next day, you might spend 5 minutes simply sorting through some ephemera or choosing stamps that you want to use the next day. It all adds up!
Do you have a journey to work or school? If so, you could take your journal with you and do a little bit of doodling or writing on the bus or train. Remember, we are not aiming to create full spreads in one go here. It’s all about the small bits and pieces you can do to build up the habit. And, the more time that you have your journal around, the more likely you are to pick it up. Maybe to write a line about something that four-year-old said behind you on the train that made you laugh, or to stick in a cool looking leaf you found on your walk. Doing this allows to to experience journaling in the moment, too!
WORK ON MORE THAN ONE PAGE
If you’re a strict chronological journaler, then this might not be for you. But I find that working on more than one spread at once allows me to move on if I am not feeling inspired, and allows me to come back to it later. Often I find coming back a week later with a fresh mind gives me a fresh perspective…even if that perspective is “wow, what what I thinking?!”, and then proceeding to cover it up with something else! If you like to write chronologically, you could spend a spare ten minutes prepping some backgrounds with watercolour or bits of paper to inspire you when you reach the pages.
NETFLIX AND… CRAFT
Okay, hands up who is guilty of binging a TV show on Netflix?! Whenever I am watching TV (or even listening to a podcast), I generally have my journal in front of me. Usually I will do less ‘involved’ tasks, such as lettering or picking ephemera that goes together. I find that it is a great way to multitask and create or keep up a journaling habit. You could even make a list of the shows you want to watch next, or make a page inspired by the show!
I hope these tips have helped, and if all else fails: