Journaling 101: Set A Timer and Write

Writing about my postpartum experiences was such an essential part of my recovery from PPD, that I am now writing a series of blog posts to inspire more moms to write their stories. In the first part of this series, I am sharing tips and ideas for journaling. 

I don’t actually use a proper timer when I’m journaling. Instead, I check the time on my laptop, and then make a mental note to write without stopping for at least 20 minutes.

You don’t have to start with twenty minutes. Journaling is a practice that becomes more natural over time. It’s like a muscle that gets stronger with practice.

So if you want to start journaling, just decide you will write for five minutes, check the time or set the timer on your phone or microwave or whatever, and then GO. Write write write write write whatever pops into your mind, it’s okay if it’s nonsense, it’s okay if it’s the shopping list, no one is ever going to read your journaling, just write write write and enjoy the minutes.

If five minutes sounds daunting, start with four. Or three. Or two. Or one. Just start.

Then slowly, as you get comfortable with journaling, you can increase the length of your sessions. Remember: this is not an Olympic sport. There aren’t any medals. You are just doing this for yourself. So let the journaling journey unfold as it will.

And yet, organic as this adventure might be, there’s something about the timer that helps me stay in the flow. Something that keeps my butt in the chair, even when I want to refill my drink. (By the way, I could use a Diet Coke refill RIGHT NOW but I want to finish this post, so if someone could get me some???)

Above all, remember that your journaling practice is YOURS. You get to decide what tips and tricks work for you best. The timer is only helpful if it gets you writing.