Keeping a journal is not just recording the events of your life or how you’re feeling. It can be a way of supporting your creative life. It’s a low risk, private as you want, way of writing down your ideas, your dreams and your resolves. It can be very instructive to read the journals of writers, artist, and actors and get an insight into how they used journaling to grow and develop in their field.
Here are five ways keeping a journal can enhance your creativity.
1. It provides a safe space
Between the pages of your journal, you can keep safe all those ideas that are just starting to form, that are not quite ready to be explored on canvas or turned into a short story, book or article.
2. It quiets your inner critic
Journaling can help shush your inner critic, that little voice that polices all your thoughts and ideas. Research has shown that when you write without expectation, the part of your mind that acts as a censor steps aside and lets you get on with it. Journaling, free writing or morning pages allow you to write for the sake of it, no editing, no agonizing. And that frees up your creative flow!
3. You can develop your voice
Journaling is freeform, messy writing. No one is going to read it, so you can be free to test out and build your voice. It’s a time to experiment, explore styles and not worry if it doesn’t work.
4. Journaling can allow ideas to form
As you get into the creative flow of journaling, you free up your mind to start spawning new ideas. The process makes space for ideas to well up, ideas you may not have had if you were trying too hard. And there’s no commitment to take any of them further unless you want to, and it feels right.
5. You can write about what matters to you
Your journal is yours and yours alone. You can write down your secret fears; you can write your truth. Once it’s down on paper, then you can decide if you want to do anything with it.
You can take aspects of your truth and turn them into a poem or a painting. Journaling gives you practice in acknowledging and embracing your truth. And your art will sing more authentically because of it.