There are many myths about journaling: you have to write everyday, you must be a good writer, you should always write at a certain time of day. Most people find that these rules don’t work for them and have better luck developing their own journaling rhythm. The most important myth to debunk is the one about writing ability. If you can think and talk, then you can write. The secret is to trust the process and put pen to paper without judgment.
If you are a computer-lover, you may prefer the keyboard to the pen, but I encourage trying the old-fashioned blank book. There is something lovely about the object-hood of a journal, being able to hold it, doodle in its margins, and flip through its pages. If you are more of a visual person, you might try keeping a journal that focuses more on imagery than on writing or combines the two.
Write at any time you want to check in with yourself, express your feelings, recall a meaningful moment, capture a dream, or simply record your healing process. You can write spontaneously or use writing prompts found in this book or other books on journaling. Often, it’s helpful to start from exactly where you are in that moment: “Not sure what to write – feeling a bit lethargic and clouded. Need to do laundry today.” Trust me: if you keep writing without stopping to edit or think too much, you will find yourself in a zone where the words simply come without effort. Be sure to date each journal entry, even if it’s just a few sentences.
Making mandalas is an excellent exercise whenever you are not sure what else to do or you are in need of a relaxing, calming activity (see pp.99–100 for