Thursday, September 22, 2016

Journaling by Julie Jarnagin

Have you ever kept a diary or journal? I've had many different versions of journals throughout the years. I've kept journals about my kids when they were babies. I've had prayer journals, gratitude journals, food journals, and morning pages to increase creativity. Currently, I use online journals at

There are a lot of benefits to journaling. Depending on the type of journal, they can be good for your physical health, mental health, personal growth, or creativity. Even with all these benefits, it can be difficult to start a new habit. Here are a few tips on getting started:

Start small – Don’t set yourself up for failure. You don’t have to journal every single day. It’s okay if your journal entry is only a phrase or a few words. Consider getting into the habit of journaling by simply listing three things you’re thankful for before you go to bed at night.

Keep your journal close at hand – Where are you most likely to use your journal? If it’s in bed, keep it in your nightstand. If it’s in the car while you wait for your kids in the carpool line, keep it in the glove box. Or if, like me, you're more likely to have your phone or computer nearby, create an electronic journal. 

Free writing – If you don’t think you have anything to say, just write the first thing that comes to mind, and don’t let your pencil stop. Let your subconscious take over. You’ll be amazed at how much it has to say. 

It’s about you – There is no wrong way to journal. It’s simply about having a creative outlet. Be open and flexible and let your own instincts take the lead. If your journal ends up being pages of sketches and doodles, that’s okay. If it ends up being a collection of meaningful quotes you’ve run across, that’s great. If it's a place for you to write down hilarious stories about your family, perfect.  Sometimes my journal is simply a place for me to list the things that are causing me to worry because writing them down helps me put them in perspective. 

Do you keep a journal? What kind of journaling do you think would be most beneficial to you? 

New Release! 
Cowgirl in the Kitchen

Just as she's about to make her dream come true, disaster strikes. The only way she can get back in the saddle is to strike a bargain—with a man her family despises. 

Jentry Lawson's dream of becoming a world-class barrel racer is about to happen—until she and her horse are injured in a terrible accident. Forced to move back home to Texas to recuperate, her Dallas-based brother makes her an offer she can't refuse. He needs someone he can trust to oversee the renovation and grand opening of his new restaurant. If she'll take that on, he'll finance her return to the arena. It doesn't take Jentry long to discover she bit off more than she can chew. Swallowing her pride, she asks for help from Gavin Easton—a man her brother despises. But he's the one person who can make the restaurant succeed. 

People in Glover never thought Gavin Easton would amount to anything. Ever since his own restaurant in town burned down, he's taken odd jobs to provide for his niece, whom he is raising alone. When beautiful and stubborn Jentry offers him the perfect job, his first reaction is to turn her down flat. No way he's going to do anything to help her brother! But there's more at stake than his pride. Can he trust his future to the woman whose brother tried to ruin his reputation—and his life? 

Besides, how can he manage a restaurant, when he can't manage his heart?

USA Today Best Selling author Julie Jarnagin writes sweet and inspirational romance. She grew up in a small Oklahoma town where her family farmed and ranched. These days she lives in a not-so-big city with her amazing husband and two young sons who tolerate all her nerdy quirks. Julie earned a B.A. in Journalism / Professional Writing from the University of Oklahoma and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. www.JulieJarnagin.comSign up for her newsletter to be the first to learn about new releases and free books:

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  1. I keep a journal for each story I write and journal about character backstory - the yen comes at odd times, like when my hands are wet because I've been doing the dishes. :)

  2. I keep a journal on my phone and on my computer. For Grandparents Day, my adult children bought my Mom a beautiful journal.

  3. I have kept a journal and work for many years and it has helped me keep track of many things on a daily basis!

  4. Thanks for the tips! I have been wanting to start a journal for awhile now. Think I'll start with an online one.

  5. Thanks for the tips! I have been wanting to start a journal for awhile now. Think I'll start with an online one.

  6. Thanks for the tips! I have been wanting to start a journal for awhile now. Think I'll start with an online one.

  7. I have never used a journal. I hear so many writers doing this, but I'd rather be writing on my books.

  8. I've never kept a journal on a consistent basis. Maybe I'll try again.