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how to write a journal
August 27, 2001
3:31 pm
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josh
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i know this probably is a stupid question, but i decided to start keeping a journal as a way to get my feelings out but its not working. it always comes out sounding like a news report of the days events instead of how i feel. i dont know how to put the feelings into words. is there a way i can improve my journal keeping skills?

August 27, 2001
4:06 pm
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malaikau
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Hi Josh! It can be a long process to get in touch with your feelings, but you are on the right path. As you journal about the days events, just take a minuted to slow it down and imagine how you were feeling when you were doing what you were doing. Ask yourself things like "What was I thinking about?" "Was I comfortable doing this, or was I uncomfortable?" and then "Why or why not?" As you start to have these kinds of conversations with yourself about these things, it will help you begin to get in touch with your feelings.

Maybe you can start by journaling about the post you made here. Did it feel comfortable for you to do it? Were you nervous? If so, why? If you felt nervous because you thought you were asking a "stupid question", then ask yourself why? What did you think was stupid about the question? Why does it matter if others who visit this site think your question was stupid? Pretty soon you will be pouring out all kinds of feelings.

And just for the record, I did not think your question was stupid. I am a firm believer in journals. I keep one myself, and it takes time and practice to use them to be a real benefit. I hope you keep coming back here with questions, or to share your experiences to help others!!!

Sincerely,

Mal

August 27, 2001
5:04 pm
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Ladeska
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It's not really important to write in complete sentences either. Sometimes we try to write as if we were writing something for a teacher to see and it's just for "you" personally. I'll give you an example....let's say you saw someone today that you had an issue with and to write your feelings down about it - might go like this...

saw Dee today, felt scared, disconnected, didn't want to talk
dark, feel dark
numbed up
felt better walking away
now just nothing

It takes time to get used to even acknowledging your feelings and if they've been bottled up forever - hey, it took years to put the cork in the bottle and it may take sometime prying the little sucker loose, too! That's okay. Maybe a trickle or two here and there is safer than all of a sudden arriving and popping the cork all over the room, right? Nasty mess that could be huh? (smile)

Take your time, babble in jibberish or in code or however - just write what makes sense to you....that's all that matters. Draw, doodle, just put it down, it will get easier... This is your "code book" that you will refer to alot as time goes on. Will help you connect many dots, so it's very, very important for the journey of self discovery.

August 27, 2001
5:27 pm
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ravenchild
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have you ever read or written poetry ?
it probly sounds lame but i dont care...when i write in my journal i act like im writting every little thought, every emotion, every little scream i feel building up. lol sometimes i actually write down "grrrrrrrrr" and ""big scream" all over her!" and sometimes i write in ryme and some times its compleat gibbersh writen up side down an kroked and so NO-ONE else could ever figure out what it says and sometimes when i go back and read it i dont know what it was sappost to say but thats o kay because it only serves its perpose at the time and then some times it looks like a schedule and thats okay i love not making cence...
ps it okay if you cant spell...(like me)

August 27, 2001
5:51 pm
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angelchains
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I have kept a journal for several years now and it is a very good tool. There is no right or wrong way, it is like creating a fine soup. You are slowly skimming away all the junk off of the top of the soup until you can actually get to the good stuff. Personally I don't read what I write immediately after it is written. 🙂 angel

August 27, 2001
6:47 pm
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Molly
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Josh, why don't you start with a list of adjectives. anger, pain, disappointment, love, happiness, joy, frustration, hate, like, comfort, peace,anxiety, itchyness, tense,secure,yada yada yada. and go from there, make a list of words and what they mean to you that day, even a plus or minus sign, its a great way to really get in touch with emotions. Might take some of the dry ness out of what you write, but as you write, and realize the emotions you feel, it might be easier if you identify with an adjective that can help you formulate what you are feeling.

September 1, 2001
3:45 am
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ria
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josh the main thing i learned about keeping a journal is to just write and keep writing get it all out of your head.It really dosent matter if it dosent make sense now believe me at some point in the future it will all begin to make sense.and you will start to realise your feelings. go easy on yourself and try to be patient with yourself and above all remember a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. keep writing its worth it

September 5, 2001
3:06 pm
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goofy
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hey josh, I've been keeping a journal for a while. I just do it to release everything that is running through my mind. Who cares if it sounds like a 'news report.' Don't be afraid to be yourself. Sometimes you want to hold back...:)

September 9, 2001
2:27 am
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not2fargone
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I've been writing in a journal since I was a kid. I'm not sure how to explain "my method," but if I had to I'd say that I write as if talking to my best friend. I let myself ramble, groan, think out loud. I get angry, I get sad...I also don't reread what I've written until a long time after. Rereading too soon afterward can make you very self-conscious about the act of writing. Try, if you can, to forget that you're writing, and don't worry about syntax and grammar. Look at it as something that's for you only. It's like thinking on paper. It doesn't have to, and maybe shouldn't be, polished. Unless that's what you feel comfortable with.

September 21, 2001
12:39 am
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child
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I have been keeping a journal since i was 12. There are no rules to journal writing. Just write whatever . sometimes i write a shoping list in my journal, sometimes I draw. Usually when i just write something, or put the pen to the paper words seem to write themselves..Don't worry about gramer or spelling just do it. All the good stuff comes out when you look back on it!!!so make sure to put dates on it.........
It looks like every journal writer feels the same.

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