by Twila Godinez | 1:10 am

So, you’ve been thinking about it for quite some time and you have decided you are ready to start writing in a journal.  In this post, I’ll give you the best information on how to start a journal.

Choose the Kind of Journal

There are many ways to use a journal.  You must decide what kind of a journal you want to have.  Do you want to just have a place to record your feelings?  Do you need your journal to be more of an organizational tool?  Do you have to take notes for a class?  Do you need a journal to record information for your job or your business?  Check out our resources on this website to learn about different kinds of journals.

Choose the Actual Journal

There are MANY different kinds of journals.  In fact Amazon has over 150,000 different journals available for you to choose from! In most cases you don’t need anything fancy, but as you spend more time journalling you will find things that you like and don’t like.  You can even pick up a simple notebook from the dollar store for your journal.  As I have spent more time with my journals, I have found that I like to have a size that will fit inside my purse so I can carry it with me.  I also like my journals to be hard bound because they tend to hold up a little better.  Thicker paper will prevent bleed through from your writing utensils.  The sky is the limit.  I suggest you get something that you enjoy.  I do tend to spend a little more on my journals as I use them constantly and I hope that they will be around for future generations to enjoy.

Choose Your Supplies

Again, this will depend on which kind of a journal you choose.  I have two journals (at the moment).  The first one is where I just free form write my thoughts.  The only supply I need for that journal is a pen.  I do have a quirk that I like to use the same color of ink, so I keep a supply of nicer black pens (nothing fancy, I’m using a PaperMate InkJoy gel pen right now).  The other journal I keep is a hybrid type of a bullet journal planner.  For this journal, I use a wider variety of supplies.  I use colored pencils, colored pens, stickers, and my favorite washi tape!  I suggest you start with the basics and find a pen you enjoy using and grow from there.

Start Writing

The only rule for journalling is there are no rules!  Just start writing!  I tend to begin and end each journal with kind of a summary of where I am in life and what has been happening (just in case one gets lost).  Don’t worry about grammar or punctuation or whether you are printing or using cursive.  The important thing is that this is your journal to use however you see fit.  This is the beginning of the new relationship between you and your journal.  Enjoy!



Oh my how I love this. My husband and I travel a lot. He would swear I just love collecting journals… as I do, but there are so many beautiful ones out there… I always run to the nearest “journal section” of any book store or thrift shop and see what gems I can find.
About writing in them… I have always said that I want to start… but I have yet to do it.. We go on hikes and I told my husband it would be the perfect thing for me to carry along a journal and document our hiking adventures… right then and there. I think journaling in this manner is something done by people too infrequently. Your post has inspired me to go dust off my favorite journal and take it with us on our next hike… Thank you for sharing.

Apr 04.2017 | 03:55 am


Hey Twila:

You’ve touched on one of the joys of my life, writing down the thoughts that wander through and detailing and digesting the events that happen all around me. It’s a great starting place for making sense of it all.

You are right. The supplies can be as simple or as elaborate as you like and each person has their own preferred choice that work for them. The important thing is the doing, it seems to me.

Myself, I tend to stick to using those old elementary school-style composition books, mostly because I still feel like I am just beginning to learn the lessons life has to teach me. I like the feel of them.

Also, they’re easier to throw out when I’m done with them.

Apr 06.2017 | 03:25 pm

    Twila Godinez

    I’ve gone through many of those basic notebooks. Now I treat myself to nicer journals since I carry them everywhere and a size that fits in my purse.

    Apr 06.2017 | 05:09 pm

Jack Taylor

Trying to start a journal can be challenging and intimidating. You make starting a journal seem so easy to do. I saved your website to my favorites for future reference. I think I’ll start working on a journal starting next week. I’m not much of a writer but it would be a fun project to do.


Oct 28.2017 | 06:31 am

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