LIVING

It’s January, Start a Journal

Anne Frank did it. Oprah Winfrey does it. Gwyneth Paltrow loves it. The common denominator that binds these extraordinary women together is…journaling.

Journaling is simply the written act of internal communication with yourself, on your thoughts, ideas, experiences and observations. If you want to look within, grow with insight and develop wisdom, start a journal.

It allows you to immerse into alone-time and go within to seek some sort of truth.

People keep journals for many reasons. Some keep personal journals, some keep travel journals, some keep art journals, some keep prayer journals and some keep gratitude journals. For me, I used to have a gratitude journal. Everyday before going to bed, with my journal and pen in hand, I would reflect upon the day’s happenings and all the things I am grateful for. It was my way of practicing the laws of attraction.

Often, people talk about how to start a journal. To me, the beauty about journaling is getting into the zone. Journaling is a personal and emotional journey within. It is kinda like mediation. Just sitting on a floor, crossing your legs and closing eyes is not enough to fully immerse into one’s mind, one’s thoughts and one’s truth.

You have to build the environment around you to allow thoughts to flow through.

Creating your journal zone (you could also call it head-space ) is a very personal. Some find peace under a tree, by the beach, on a hammock, or in a quiet corner at the neighborhood cafe.

For me, I like to journal at night on the bed just before my head hits the pillow. This is usually the time I wind down, and it is also a quiet time in the house. Sometimes, I like to play soft music on my earphones, light a candle and turn down the lights. This surrounding gives me clarity of mind to reflect on everything that has happened in the day, and pen down what I give thanks to.

Another thing I like to have to enhance my journaling experience is a pretty notebook.

And I love handmade eco-friendly journals. It is one thing to write your inner thoughts and spill your emotions in a notebook, but it is something else when you are doing so with a natural eco-made notebook in hand.

Eco-journo books are usually made from interesting recycled products such as dried banana peels, organic cotton, vintage novel covers, used second-hand leather, recycled sari, and even exotic leather fish hide (yup, recycled fish skins!).

Fair trade eco-recycled sari notebook journal by Nkuku

Handmade with cotton fiber and bound with hemp cord by Courtney Goromboly

Handmade with dried banana peel, cotton fiber paper, strap recycled papers and dried leaves by Courtney Goromboly

Eco-friendly bookbinding artesian sites I like are Nkuku, Courtney Goromboly and Wee Bindery. Recently, I have also read about an upcoming local online bookbinder named Adelene Koh and her bookbinding site, dddots.

There is also the option of binding your own journal, check out Eco-Crafts: How to Make Your Own Journal.

Every book tells a story. What is your story?

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