Journaling for Life Change

Diary writing has been around for centuries and we only have to look back into history. Samuel Pepys is the earliest diarist who is well-known today and his diaries are now preserved in the Magdalene College, Cambridge.  

In general, a diary means regular handwritten dated entries, usually daily into a book. The subject matter would be what had happened during the day and the diarist’s personal feelings and thoughts.  

In more recent times, people have started to journal their thoughts and I started journaling through a particularly stressful time in my life. As a young girl I used to love writing and I don’t put pen to paper enough. It wasn’t only diaries, I had around 15 pen friends around the World too. I distinctly remember feeling at peace as I wrote long letters to these virtual strangers, about life here in the UK. There is just something wonderful about sitting in a warm, safe place and putting your thoughts down on paper. Putting pen to paper, not staring at a screen, writing is just different.

I can tell myself anything and everything. I can plan, get excited, write down my negative thoughts and take the time to change them into positives. It is very therapeutic and I love that feeling of downloading.  

I am having a conversation with my journal and it is not answering back. It is simply listening to every word I say.

Write in your journal
A beautiful journal will inspire you
I run Journal Circles and they are always fabulous, restorative experiences. A small group of people (usually 4-6) who also enjoy the process of taking time out of their day to process their thoughts and emotions onto paper, get together. Every week, the circle meets and we talk about our journal entries. We all make a promise to keep the circle secret between ourselves.

What is said in the circle, stays in the circle.

Sometimes journals may contain anger, at other times sheer delight and happiness; what’s important is that the script is honest. It will be thought provoking. If there is negativity, that dialogue to ourselves needs to be changed. As part of the circle we encourage thoughts and positivity in each other. There is laughter and tears. My job as a Life Coach is to be the Circle Leader and I steer the questioning and thought processes, ensuring that each member of the circle leaves with a positive outlook on the week ahead.
If you are journaling alone, take time to reflect on what you have written on a weekly basis at least. Use the time to think about why you wrote what you did, what was happening, how can you change things? Should you be thinking in a more positive way? How could you change something which didn’t go as well as it should? Journaling is all about giving yourself time for thought.
Pen resting on journal

Having the tools to inspire you to write is crucial and I have put together a list of my favourite journals. I love how a journal feels in my hands and the paper has to be just right. An alluring journal will fill you with joy. Personally, I love to write in pencil, but finding a writing tool which is perfect for you will ensure your thoughts flow uninterrupted onto the pages. I have compiled my favourite journals. At the moment I am using the Laura Ashley one pictured. I love it so much – I bought 4!  

Gold foil, glossy highlights, and embossing light up this lovely Butterflies journal, providing plenty of lightly-lined pages for personal reflection. It has 160 lightly lined pages.

These are my favourite journals. There is something very pleasurable about writing down thoughts and aspirations in an inspiring notebook.

inspiring notebook

This beautiful journal is made from soft and supple dark brown water buffalo leather and has a real leather scent. It’s naturally tanned with special oil and has 240 pages.                  

water buffalo leather journal

This is genuine leather, handcrafted journal made by a small family business in India. It has the added advantage of a clasp.                  

handcrafted journal

The cover design of this beatific journal is a reproduction of a gold-tooled book binding created by the Henry T. Wood bindery of London in 1933. Iridescent highlights and gold foil treatments light up the sun, planets, stars, borders, and other particulars against a background of cerulean blue.           

gold binded journal

This pretty Journal includes inspirational quotations here and there throughout its pages. A fold-over panel closes with a magnet to secure your writings.                

Alison March life coaching

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