The 5 W's of Journaling You Need to Know

The 5 W’s of Journaling

Woman sitting in chair writing in journal

My parents recently found and gave me an old diary of mine. Wow, did it ever bring back memories! As I flipped through the pages filled with writing and doodling I couldn’t stop smiling. There were so many laughs, tears, obstacles and milestones that were preserved through my writing. At the time I wrote in the diary I had no clue what the benefits of journaling were, I just knew I enjoyed the safe place to share my thoughts, feelings and experiences. I’ve had a love and appreciation for journaling for as long as I can remember.

So, whether you don’t think you have time to journal or aren’t sure how – I want to help! I’ve broken out the 5 W’s of journaling; who, what, where, when, and why you could benefit from it.

WHO should keep a journal?
Yourself, your child, your spouse, your friends, your parents, your neighbor, your cousins, your co-workers… everyone.

It’s not just the person journaling that benefits either. I view life as a ripple effect. When we are happy, at peace and shining bright, our light and energy passes on to those around us.


WHAT is journaling?

Anyone can give you the official definition, but I will speak from my heart. Journaling is a feeling and an experience. It’s allowing your pen to flow across the page as unedited thoughts pour out. Some days you may open your journal knowing exactly what will or needs to come out. Other days, words or emotions will come out that you didn’t realize needed to.

Journaling is keeping your everyday experiences and your grand adventures safe. It’s a collection of pure moments throughout time that have shaped you into who you are today.

The types of journals are endless. You can keep one, five or however many you wish. I keep four and they are:

Writing in journal diary

Daily Journal or “diary”: Here is where I write about my day, my goals, my frustrations, my excitement, my fears, my gratitude – you name it, it’s in there. It’s a safe place to document the day, and to simply let it go. Whether it’s a big day, or a quiet day, I share it.

Children’s Gratitude Journal: My children and I practice daily gratitude together by using one of the journals in my own collection – The Making of a Grateful Heart . I am determined to raise grateful children and sitting together to find the grateful moments in our day together has been an incredible tool.

Child writing in daily gratitude journal The Making of a Grateful Heart

Work Journal: This journal is quite different than my others. Here is where I use bullet points, random thoughts or creative ideas to brainstorm. I use this journal to explore new avenues, write to do lists or action plans.

Journal for my Kids: I know a lot of fellow mamas who also keep a journal to document their child’s random days or big milestone moments. When they took their first steps, which foods they liked/disliked, funny things they’ve said or just what they did that day. I think its fun to look back and be able to remember little details even on the quiet days. They may also enjoy reading it when they are older!

WHERE should I journal?
Any place, any time. The best part about writing is that you aren’t confined to a place. You can write in bed, on a bench at the park, on an airplane, at the bus stop, in the bath, at a local café – anywhere!

Sometimes I keep my journal with me so that if something comes up or I have time, I can write it out. My favourite places to write are in the backyard during summer and in bed, nice and cozy.

WHEN to start a journal:

It’s been known that many people begin journaling when they are going through a big or hard experience. I always suggest starting today, no matter what your age or circumstances are. By journaling today, you prepare yourself for the future because you become more aware of yourself and what’s happening around you.

WHY should I journal?

There are many benefits of journaling, including (but certainly not limited to):

  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Able to express yourself in a nonjudgmental environment
  • Encourages creativity and gratitude
  • Encourages mindfulness
  • Clears your mind and thoughts

And my favourite reason why, is because everyone has a story that deserves to be told. Whether you keep your journal to yourself or one day pass it down, your life and story will always have a home. When you think about the world, we seem so small, but we aren’t. Our life experiences, decisions and our feelings have impacted the lives of many. And by telling our story we are sharing our piece of the puzzle.

Inspirational life quote - Because everyone has a story to be told

If you are a lover of journals please check out my collection of guided journals, and don’t forget to subscribe for new releases, inspiration and promotions!