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  • August 06, 2023 4 min read

    So you’ve fallen out of your journaling practice. It’s ok! Things happen—we get too busy and our priorities can shift. Or maybe this is a more deliberate decision: whatever your reasons are, perhaps you’ve decided to take a break and step back from journaling for the meantime. That’s fine, too! But now you’re ready to fall back in. Start all over again and get to writing.

    … only, for some reason, you can’t seem to go back to the way things were. Before stopping, you had no issues with jotting things down in your journal but now it’s a challenge to stay consistent. Is it really too late to restart your journaling practice?

    The good news is, it’s not! In fact, here are five things you can try so that you can ease yourself back into the art of journaling.

     

    1. Maybe it’s no longer for you.

    Let me clarify: we’re not talking about journaling but the method you were using before you stopped! This is especially true if you took a break for a considerable amount of time. Like we mentioned, things change and even if some of those changes are not very obvious, it may have an effect on how you approach journaling as you restart the practice. Maybe it’s time to try something new: there are so many methods out there. Here’s an easy list that provides a few!

    Take a look at what’s changed in your life, what your new priorities are, and the things that matter to you because this can have an impact on the type of journaling method that will work for you from now on.

     

    2. Take it easy: you're rebuilding the habit from scratch.

    Remember how it wasn’t easy to journal every day when you started doing so the first time? Think of yourself as a beginner because, in a way, you are! Since you stepped back and have fallen out of the habit, it’ll take some time to rebuild and incorporate back into your daily schedule. Don’t be too hard on yourself—just make sure you set aside time for it which leads us to the next item…

     

    3. Add journaling to your schedule and consider a tracker.

    The only way you’ll remember to consistently journal is if you add it to your schedule. Allot a specific time of the day to sit down and write. Otherwise, you’ll either keep forgetting or your day will end up filled with other activities and journaling will be overlooked. Jot down a quick note on your planner and make sure to stick to your schedule.

    On top of scheduling your journaling sessions, you may also want to consider a habit tracker. If you already have one, that’s great! It’s just a matter of adding journaling to your habit tracking list. But if you haven’t tried it before, it’s a great time to start now! Here’s a post about why you should start a habit tracker of your own. It really helps! 

     

    4. Look back at your why.

    Ask yourself: why are you journaling in the first place? Are your reasons the same as before? Or have they changed completely? Knowing this sets the tone of your approach and can actually help get you unstuck. It determines if you keep the same method as before, what type of system to use, when you’ll schedule journaling times, so on and so forth.

    The good thing about journaling is that it can be as simple or complicated as you want it to be. You can either have a very specific purpose for doing it or treat it as an avenue to unload, express, and understand yourself. The point is to know exactly why you’re doing it so that you don’t aimlessly wander from blank page to blank page without any idea what you’re doing.

     

    5. Don’t forget to be realistic.

    Even if you were an avid journaler prior to taking a break, it’s possible that you may still struggle to get back to journaling. But that’s ok. Again, don’t be too hard on yourself and take it one step, one page, at a time.

    Look back at how you built the habit in the past; what were the things that helped you with consistency? Are there some best practices from before that may still work for you as you fall back into journaling? Try them and see if they work. Otherwise, we go back to the beginning. Perhaps it’s time for a new approach.

     

    Don’t quit now—you’ll get the hang of journaling again and sooner than you think!

    It’s only to be expected that there will be challenges to restarting your journaling practice after a break. But as in any habit, as long as you dedicate time and effort, you’ll be able to build a consistent schedule over time, which will allow you to continue reaping the many benefits of keeping a journal!

    How else do you think you can make it easier to fall back into journaling? Let us know in the comments! We’d love to hear from you!

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