Most of us set goals in the New Year, but for some unknown reason, keeping up with these goals tends to be a bit difficult. I find that keeping a planner or journal can help track and keep up with all of the New Years resolutions you set. Or, perhaps keeping a journal to begin with IS the goal! So I’ve rounded up fun and creative journaling tips and tricks for the new year- enjoy!
- Journal or Planner (select a size that works for you)
- Fountain Pens
- Gel, Ballpoint, Glitter, or Scented Pens – you choose!
- Highlighters or Markers
- Sticky Notes
- Deco or Washi Tape
Step 1: Start with a Fresh Journal for Motivation
A journal is a blank canvas, giving you have the power to create something beautiful out of something ordinary. I love using OOLY’s Oh My Glitter! Notebooks, which come in a sparkling blue, pink, or gold. Once you’ve selected your journal, start writing! You can write about anything, as long as it makes you feel happy and free. Add doodles for that extra special touch.
Step 2: Choose the Right Journal Size
A smaller pocket journal like OOLY’s Oh My Ombre! Pocket Pal Journals or the Oh My Glitter! Notebooks are a good option for simple lists or daily logs. Sometimes I use smaller journals for different topics, like menu planning, writing ideas, etc. This smaller size would fit easily into a purse, backpack or briefcase. Consider your purpose for journaling and pick the notebook size and style that fits.
Step 3: Set up your Journal for Success
Start by creating an index. Using the first page or two, make a simple chart to record your entries. The index will be mostly blank to start. Whenever you create a new journal entry, add it to the index with a title and page number. Whether you’re tracking travels, books read, brainstorming menus, or even these journaling tips and tricks, record them page into the index.
I find an index freeing because I don’t have to section off large chunks of my journal in advance. Pre-made sections often end up being too small or too large for the job. So, I just write straight through the journal and record new entry pages into my index as I write. When I’m looking for something, I refer to the index for quick direction. The indexing method frees up space in your journal.
Another great way to divide sections is by using Note Pals Sticky Tabs to mark your spot. They are little sticky tabs with enough room to write a title, a little message or reminder or use as a bookmark. Adorable sushi rolls, arctic animals, or other motifs add a whimsical flair to your journaling, and they’re so practical!
Step 4: Create Journal Pages
I like to give each page a header or title. Use a chunky highlighter, or doodle with sparkly pens. Or, grab some washi tape and add page headers. Even as a grown-up, I got a little giddy using OOLY’s Yummy Yummy Scented Glitter Gel Pens. There’s something about sparkly text in a journal! It’s like happiness in a pen! The glitter livens up the pages, and the colors help create divisions between entries. Here I’ve detailed our field trips for the year, using a new color for each trip.
Reading logs are also popular journal entries. Make a “Read” or “To-Read” list, or you can even record detailed reactions for each book you’ve read with a note set that works like a sticky note on a tape dispenser; simply tear or cut off to customized lengths. The wider tape is good for notes, while the smaller ribbon tape is easy to use as decor or like I used them to create mini-sidebars on my Book Reactions page to record a summary, quote, and additional details from each book.
For doodlers, OOLY’s colorful fountain pens are a must; some say they’re a journal’s best friend! Artists and writers alike will enjoy the fine lines these pens draw, perfect for text, lines, or drawings.
Use Google to get inspiration for doodle entries: movie titles inside popcorn, book titles inside books, menu ideas inside a frying pan, etc. Don’t be afraid to borrow from the inspiration of others for your personal journal!
Step 5: Stay Organized!
Finally, keep journaling supplies organized and handy makes creating daily entries easy and super quick!. An organizer like this is perfect for the job! Larger journals like the fit in one section, pens and markers in another, and small items like stickers and tape in the middle. Have journal, will travel!
Now, with these journaling tips and tricks, colorful supplies, index for recording and pages set up, you’re ready to begin a delightful and creative journey of daily journaling for the new year!
Julie Kieras is a mom, writer, and educator who loves to get crafty. She homeschools her two boys and aims to bring art and creativity to their daily lessons. For more arts and crafts fun, follow her blog at Happy Strong Home and her social media @juliekieras (Instagram/Pinterest) or @happystronghome (Facebook/Twitter).