Journaling techniques or methods are ways that you can better utilize the time you have to journal. They give you a tool to make journaling your thoughts easier.
After 20 plus years of journaling I can say that having different ways to journal really helps when you are struggling to get the writing flow going.
Here are my five favorite journal techniques, so I never have to stare at a blank page.
1. Problem Solving Technique: Ask a Question and Walk Away
If you are trying to solve a problem, then write down the question(s) that you have around that problem. Write down as many as you can think of. Then walk away.
Yes, that is right don’t journal about them!
Why? When you do this, you are signaling to the Universe and your subconscious that you need help. You are announcing to both that you would like some answers. And luckily, most of the time you get an answer, or at least a starting point to solving it!
How long should you stay away? This is all up to you, it can be five minutes or an entire day. It doesn't matter. The point is that you're putting the questions out there and allowing the answers to start coming to you.
You're not stressing about it. You're not creating an issue about it. You're letting the answers come to you. You let them flow in.
I typically will do this at night right before bed. This way I clear my mind and allow my subconscious to work while I am sleeping. First thing in the morning, grab your pen get to writing!
2. Meditation For Journaling Blocks
The second thing that you can do is meditate. I do this when I'm able to write, but things are very scattered. Or I am slowing down but know there is something very close to being ready to come out!
I do a five-minute meditation where I focus on my breathing to start to center myself. Then I visualize myself opening my crown chakra. Followed by imagining universal energy to connect with me and stream ideas to me. Then after that I visualize grounding myself. I do this by imagining a cord connecting my root chakra to the core of the earth. I finish with another few deep breaths while imaging the energy flowing through me. By the time I do this quick five-minute meditation, I'm usually able to pick up my journal and tune in to what I need to do.
If you would like to use a guided meditation to try this, I recorded what I do for it. It is a little longer than five minutes as I walk you through it! You can find it on YouTube or on Insight Timer.
3. Journal Prompts
Journal prompts are a great way to get your thoughts flowing. Journal prompts are sentences or ideas that help focus your mind in one direction. They can also trigger ideas or questions around what you were working on.
You can Google these they are everywhere!
You can also create your own. I went through an old journal and pulled out all the questions that I noticed worked for me. I made them into a little deck of cards I can use when I get stuck.
I will give you an example of a journal prompt so you can get the idea. “Write out what your new identity is if you follow your dream.”
4. Oracle Cards
Like journal prompts, using a deck of oracle cards allows you to focus you mind in a specific direction.
You can use any deck that you feel drawn to. I have two decks that I use.
What I do is first determine which deck feels right to use on that day. Then I shuffle the cards and pull one. Once I have pulled the card, I will ask myself how this applies to what I am working on right now. Or if there is another meaning that the card was drawn for. Then I write!
Some extra questions you might consider are:
What does that mean? Why did I draw this card? What does that have to do with my problem? Is it the solution to my problem?
5. Re-Read Past Journal Entries
I will go back and re-read my previous journal entries. Sometimes something will jump out at me as something to explore and expand upon. You may see a lose thread that you can continue writing about
6. Use Self Help Books for Journal Ideas
This is another technique that I use when I am stuck on a problem. I will grab a book that relates to the probelm, or a general personal development book. Then I open to a random page and start reading.
After reading a page or two, I will go back to my journal and begin writing.
Time after time I am amazed at how I am lead to the exact thing I need.
My two favorite books to use for this purpose are The Four Agreements and The Mastery of Love* both by Don Miguel Ruiz. I find that between these two books, most problems are covered! (If you have not read them I highly recommend you do!)
I would love to know, what journaling techniques do you use to make sure you are never stuck in your journal writing?