When I was eleven I attended a “6th grade retreat” which was put on by my small private school. There were four other sixth graders in my cabin, and we had two counselors who were both seniors in high school.

On the very first night of the retreat, our counselors gave us cute composition books to use as a journal or notebook during our time at the retreat.

Since that moment, journaling has become a very dear habit of mine, and something I’m so thankful I did and am continuing to do.

I journaled every single day from the sixth grade retreat until the start of my senior year of high school. In other words, I have some sort of daily record of my life from May 6, 2008 to August 28, 2013, even if it was just “June 6th- haircut.” Lol!

My senior year of high school I stopped journaling everyday. I was simply too busy and the expectation of “I have to journal everyday” made me not like it. This not-everyday-journaling is what I currently do.

Today, I want to share with you five reasons why I love journaling as well as a peek inside my journals.

Do you like to journal? Here are five reasons why I love journaling and why you should too, as well as a peek inside my journals.

Five Reasons Why I Love Journaling:

1. It’s a Way to Remember the Past

I love to randomly grab one of those composition books and read up on what life was like in the 8th grade. They make me laugh so often! I would write down the most randomest things.

Through my journals, I can also remember significat moments in my past, such as the first time my current roomie/ bff first visited my church back in 7th grade, and the first time she and I hung out that summer.

Or when I (age 12) discovered that my best friend since I was seven might have to move to Arkansas, the sadness I felt when I learned she would for sure move, and how much I missed her as I learned how to cope with long distance friendship.

How else would I remember the following funny memory? On April 13, 2010 (age 13), I wrote:

During the break for testing, me, Katie, Rachel, Mateo, and Sam played red light green light. I slipped at the end and got a huge grass stain on my pants.

Lol! :D

2. It’s a Way to See Personal and Spiritual Growth

Not only are journals a great way to revisit my teenage-memories, but they’re also a great way to see how I’ve grown.

For example, earlier this week I reread the journal I wrote when I first moved away to my university. I was shocked at how much I wrote about my crush and how concerned I was about if he would ever ask me out.

As I continued to read, I saw my journey unfold before my eyes. I saw myself wrestle through singleness and eventually come to a place where I realized that it’s probably a good thing that I’m single.

On November 6, 2014 (age 18), I wrote:

I can wait.

I will wait.

I’m holding onto a hope that someday he and I will go out. It may not be today or tomorrow or next week or in a month or a year, but maybe someday it will happen.

I’m okay. I’ll survive.

Right now is not the time.

I also tend to write about what I’m learning about myself and God. By rereading my journals, I can see how my faith has grown through the years.

On November 11, 2012 (age 16), I wrote:

I’ve felt distant from God as of late.

I’ve chosen to ignore that too. But I truly want to be close to Him again. I don’t want to turn my back on Him… He’s never done me any harm and He loves me oh so much.

I miss Cody {my cousin who had died that May}. The pain is almost unbearable. Jesus gives me peace and offers to share my yoke. I just gotta let Him…

3. It’s a Place to Vent Frustrations

Such as when I’m stressed out about school or extracurricular activities. When I’m worried about an upcoming event or annoyed at a friend. When I decide to take a social media fast.

Journaling is a place for me to pour out these frustrations in a way that’s not harmful to anyone. When I remember to journal, it keeps me from complaining and dragging down a friend with my bad attitude and it keeps me from gossiping.

More often than not, when I’m venting in my journal, my writing flows into prayer and I cry out to God to help me with X,Y, or Z.

Here’s cute and kinda funny example of this; on June 19, 2008 (age 12), I wrote:

I’m getting shots and I’m so scarred!!!! :( What more can I say?

I just vented 2 God.

I have 2 go.

And this leads us to point #4…

4. It’s a Way to Record Prayer Requests

How I keep track of prayer requests varies depending on the day.

When I first started journaling when I was 11, I would draw a line across the bottom two lines of the page and write any prayer requests there.

Nowadays, I either write a bulleted list or simple write out my prayer as a part of that day’s entry.

5. It’s a Place to Keep Track of Current Memories/Thoughts

Lately, my journaling fluctuates between recording what has happened that day/week/month (depending on how long it’s been since I journaled) or writing down something I’m wondering or wrestling with.

On August 29, 2016 (age 20), I wrote:

Today Michaela {my roommate} made pancakes for breakfast. Yumm!

The rest of the day was spent doing HW, laundry, & class.

For dinner Michaela and I went to her house for burritos. At dinner her mom discovered that there’s a smiling-pile-of-poop emoji. Lol! “That brown triangle?!?” Lol!

Then I blogged some.

On October 25, 2016 (age 20), I wrote:

I’ve been realizing today & yesterday that I’ve been complaining a lot. I’m not sure why I’ve turned to that as a means of feeling better, when it doesn’t. It makes me feel worse & makes me feel like others don’t like me b/c I complain so much. It’s like I have a “poor Kara” attitude.

I like to record both what has been happening in my life as well as what I’m currently dealing with in my faith. This way, someday in the future I can look back on what was happening when I was 20.

Journaling is amazing.

Today I shared five reasons why I love journaling. It truly is one of my most favorite things, and something I love to look back on.

Do you journal?
If so, why do you love it?

One thought on “5 Reasons Why I Love Journaling + A Peek Inside My Journals.

  1. Megan

    I LOVE journaling. It always makes me feels so much better. I think most often they turn into prayers which is actually a really effective way of praying for me.
    The only thing is…you then have actual evidence of how embarrassing you were as a kid :P


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