Journaling starts with an idea

I’ve been journaling for over 30 days, and it all started when I wanted to take down more notes. I wondered how people even get started and what do people even take notes of? Like most of us, I spent my time on YouTube, but they all tell you how to use the software. There aren’t many which tell you how to get started. And I think that’s because they can’t.

Note-taking is entirely up to the person. What are you trying to take notes of? Are you taking notes to remember things? Revision? The list of possibilities is endless.

I’ve used a range of note-taking apps, Google Keep, Bear, Apple Notes, OneNote, and they all work well. The trouble is, you need to pick one and get into the note-taking habit. Once you start and make it a habit, that’s when you can move to something else that’s better.

For instance, I decided to use Apple Notes for everything. It started small, like noting down what I’ve watched, read and heard. If I read a page in my book that I resonate with, then I take a picture or jot the words down into my notes. I note down what I’m watching during the day if I do watch anything, such as Loki, The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard etc.

After getting into that habit, I decided I want to start journaling. Should I buy a journal? Use another app? No. I will stick with Apple notes and create a folder called “Writing Sessions”. I decided at the end of every day, and I will write everything that happened. However, I will only spend 10-minutes at a time to jot down as much as I can. The time means I have to start thinking straight away and not procrastinate. It also means I won’t worry about it taking so long of my day. 10-minutes of my day is not long at all. Obviously, your situation will be different to me, but this is exactly what has worked.

And then, my friend on Twitter shared Day One journaling app and his one-year journal streak. This had me intrigued, and so I downloaded the app to explore its capabilities. I then forgot about it and carried on with Apple Notes. That is until he shared it again. I then remembered that I had the app and decided to give it another chance. This is when I found real enjoyment from the app. It has streaks, and I can put all my past journals into the app.

I then moved all my journaling from Apple Notes into Day One. However, I’m not telling you what to use here. I’m saying that you should use what’s right for you and only move to another app when you’ve created the habit. My habit has now been going on for 32 days, and it feels fantastic to see my progress.

This is also known as the 2-minute habit rule, which James Clear talks about in his Atomic Habits book. I was creating this habit before I knew about the 2-minute rule, and it just fits perfectly. I’ve almost finished this book now and it’s give me so much inspiration. I will be building far more habits from now on.

If you want to start journaling, or another habit, then start with something that works for you. Pick a time, place and duration. Then when you get into the habit, adjust as needed.

What habits are you trying to create? What habits will you make? Let me know in the comments, as I’d love to hear them. Also, check out Atomic Habits. It’s a great book.

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Day One journaling app

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