What Journaling Every Day For A Month Taught Me

What Journaling Every Day For A Month Taught Me

A journey in self-discovery and ink stains.
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At first, the thought of keeping all of your innermost thoughts and feelings in one place can seem daunting. Especially when you consider tying to do it for AN ENTIRE MONTH. It sure did to me, but once I moved past my initial trepidation of somebody accidentally happening across those thoughts and feelings, the idea of journaling became something that I could look forward to. I found it to be a great method of capturing a moment in time, akin to taking a photograph. And one of the most important things I learned was that sometimes the quickest way to learn something new about yourself is to just write it down.

For starters, I learned a little something about where I like to write things down. What I found to be the best kind of journal to work with is one with thick pages (so the ink doesn’t bleed as readily) and pockets. That way anything I wanted to save for later to add to the journal wouldn’t run the risk of getting lost. One of my favorites, which is rather affordable, is Markings® by C.R. Gibson.

My favorite things to document are experiences and feelings that I might want to access later. That being said, I figured out that I also liked to preserve things like ticket stubs, pressed leaves, sketches, or pictures alongside the written words to visually enhance the pages.

Other fun additions included a variety of paints, self-made envelopes, and stickers. Having extra embellishments like those helped me to recall experiences more vividly as well as make the process of journaling more fun. I learned about what I considered to be the most significant events in my life as they were happening.

Mostly, I enjoyed journaling because it showed me different ways to spend my time, and besides having a therapeutic quality, writing in a journal functions as a nice alternative to being on my phone in public. Instead of allowing myself to be consumed by stress or sadness, I learned that it feels good to articulate how you feel, even if it is just on paper.

In turn, it pushed me to start sharing how I feel more readily because I had a concrete grasp of my exact emotions instead of just a vague notion of them. From there I realized it’s not just the sad things that are worth documenting, and I found a greater appreciation for what makes me happy after seeking out the best moments of each day to commemorate.

Overall, keeping a daily journal changed me for the better because it let me prove to myself that I could make a moderately time-consuming commitment (some days I would write for at least an hour!) and stick through it. I grew to become more comfortable with filling empty spaces, which is mostly a convenient skill to have as an English major who must frequently start essays from scratch. And most importantly, I had a stronger sense of self after I had finished.

As some parting words of wisdom, when I was stuck for ideas on what to write about, I found that good places to find ideas to get the creative juices flowing include (but are not limited to) Pinterest, a Daily Writing Prompt website, or this PDF that has a prompt for each day of the year. Any of these are great starting points to go off of. That or redoing prompts that I’d already responded to as time goes on. This reveals how your opinions on things can change over time, which is the best aspect of journaling in my opinion: being able to keep track of what makes you, you.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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20 Fun Facts To Use When Introducing Yourself

As we embark on the semester, we are put on the spot in order to share interesting details about ourselves. This article discloses possible fun facts to tell others!
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After experiencing my first week of classes, I have learned that every student needs a handy-dandy list of fun facts about themselves to tell other people. Many professors use the first couple of classes to learn about their students, so you may need to think about who you are and how you want to introduce yourself to your professor and classmates. We all have that one go-to interesting fact about ourselves, but sometimes you just have to mix it up!

1. My favorite hobby is...

What do you do in your free time? Personally, I love to stay active! I am a competitive Latin dancer and enjoy teaching and taking Zumba classes, going to the gym, and hiking.

2. I love...

Is there something, someone, or somewhere that you love? What makes your heart ache? What do you miss when it's gone? I can say that I love my friends because I feel my most confident when I'm surrounded by those who love and support me.

3. I look up to...

Is there someone you adore? Who mesmerizes you? Who do you wish to learn from? After watching "A Ballerina's Tale," I discovered Misty Copeland. In 2015 she became the first African American ballet dancer to become the Female Principal Dancer at American Ballet Theatre. Her passion, grace, and strength continuously motivate me to better myself as an athlete and an individual.

4. This art speaks to me because...

Coco Chanel said, "In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different." This encourages me to always follow my heart no matter what. I will never follow society's standards and norms because they do not define me. Chanel's saying definitely influences my character and lifestyle.

5. A funny and/or embarrassing memory of me is...

When you make others laugh they want to spend time and make memories with you! Don't be afraid to embarrass yourself. You will come off as down to earth, easy-going, and loyal.

6. My siblings or lack thereof influenced me by...

I can go on and on about my brother, who is 10 years older than I. We have opposite personalities and despite the age gap, we're quite close.

7. My pet(s) are my life because...

Only sad people don't like hearing about furry creatures, even if your pets are slimy and slithering creatures all human beings enjoy hearing pet tales!

8. I'm afraid of...

Your personality can be revealed by your likes and dislikes, including the things that you fear. I am terrified of change and the unknown, hence, the future is an anxiety-inducing topic to discuss for me.

9. I am the way I am because...

What have you gone through in life that has shaped you into who you are today? Remember to be open minded and allow yourself to open up to your peers. You may be surprised by how others respond and/or what others have endured as well.

10. The most unusual item that can be found in your dorm...

This is a fun fact about yourself that can easily liven up an awkward conversation. Think about your quirks and differences! One item I have in my dorm is my teddy bear, Peter, whom I like to joke is my boyfriend.

11. My dream job is...

In college, "What's your major?" is a widespread question. Nonetheless, skip the boring statement of "I'm majoring in..." and go in depth on what your dream job is (hopefully your major factors in to this dream of yours).

12. My hidden talents are...

Angelina Jolie is a knife thrower. Kendall Jenner can produce bird noises. Amanda Seyfried can crochet and knit. Is there anything special you can do? Some people have rare and unique talents, maybe you can think of some hidden talents of your own!

13. My guilty pleasure is...

I will say it a million times: don't be shy when introducing yourself to new people! I'll start by divulging my guilty pleasure: Youtube's family vlogging channel, "OKBaby"!

Check them out: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvUCbnwzySKgbKiB_...



14. Some activities on my bucket list are...


This is an easy way to grab people's attention and find others with similar desires as you. Be an adventurer! Go out of your comfort zone!

15. Talk about your best friend...

How would your best friend describe you? What do you love to do with your best friend?

16. Talk about an accomplishment of yours...

You are incredible and have achieved so much! Reveal something that you are proud of — show off a little!

17. This one time at my job...

Bosses breathing down your neck. Curious coworkers asking personal questions. Cursing customers who never leave you alone. Your job can be filled with tons of hilarious situations that can easily entertain a crowd.

18. During the summer...

Any scars with stories? Any summer flings? Any lessons learned from the tanning too long? Now that summer is over, disclose memories that can leave positive impressions on others.

19. I volunteer at...

Do you do any community service? Share a funny moment while you were volunteering. What did you learn while there? Would you continue?

20. [blank] is meaningful to me because...



What do you appreciate in life? What brightens your day? What makes you fall in love? What does someone have to do to make you smile?

Finally, remember to be outgoing! Reveal that three-mile smile and open your arms to learning about others. Spread smiles, love, and happiness.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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20 Things I'd Do If The Concept Of Time Was Abolished

If only our lives weren't limited by time.

amrojas
amrojas
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Recently, news outlets have been reporting on how the people of Sommarøy, a Norwegian island located north of the arctic circle, would like to remove the concept of time. This is largely in part due to the fact that the sun does not set during much of the summer nor does it rise during the winter. The inhabitants of Sommarøy do not have rigidly separated days and nights like the rest of the world and can be found doing normal daytime activities at 2 am in the summers.

They also would like to take clocks out of their society. Although this lifestyle might seem impractical to the rest of us, I couldn't help but wonder what it would be like to live in a world where time is irrelevant, in regards to the concept AND the physical effects of its passing. This newfound information gave rise to ideas of things (some simple, some whimsical) I'd do if the concept of time did not exist and we had as much time to do the things we wanted.

1. Live on a ship at sea.

2. Watch a flower grow from a seed to its death.

3. Apply as much makeup as desired without being late.

4. Retake my favorite college courses and participate as fully as I possibly can, including the completion of every single reading and film.

5. Take a non-stop trip through every country in the world.

6. Learn to play and fully master every single musical instrument in existence.

7. Watch a full rotation of Earth around the sun from space.

8. Live by myself in a cabin at the edge of the woods a la Thoreau.

9. Reread every single book that shaped my childhood.

10. Have a brief conversation with every old friend.

11. Re-drink that first sip of the perfect cup of coffee.

12. Observe how the tides change with the lunar cycle.

13. Learn as many languages as possible.

14. Sit at the beach and listen to music for days.

15. Train for an Olympic event.

16. Write a detailed, thorough analysis of every track in my favorite movie soundtracks.

17. Take a photo of every interesting place I visit and every little nook I find peace in and make a physical photo album.

18. Cook food without burning it.

19. Watch a star's life cycle from birth to death.

20. Replay the feeling of coming home.

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amrojas

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