8 Unique Locations to Journal And Why They Matter
It's the ass crack of dawn; I've hit the snooze alarm six times, and it's time to begin my day.
The first thing I do every morning is to break out my gratitude journal to remind myself of all the things I'm thankful for in my life. It jumpstarts my brain up each day with a positive outlook, rather than facing the impending stress and chaos that is soon to follow.
If you haven't started a journal, you should get going soon. Research has shown that gratitude not only increases your overall happiness, but also does wonders for your physical health.
The key to expressing your gratitude is to make it a habit.
Unfortunately, many of our lives are so chaotic that adding one additional task may seem daunting. But, it's not like you have to start writing as soon as your feet hit the floor. It's not about what time you journal at all.
To truly make gratitude journaling a habit, you shouldn't focus on the "when," but the "where."
Although it sounds silly, journaling in the same location every day will help you fully express your emotions and establish a routine of positivity.
If you don't know where to start, you've come to the right place. The Bro Journal is all about helping you reach your goals and achieve your best self. Let's look into eight unique places where you can begin journaling and why these locations matter.
1. Your Bed
You're probably groggy and disoriented when you first wake up in the morning. The burdens of the day may appear challenging, and the stresses of reality can instantly infect your mind as soon as you open your eyes.
So, to combat this impending sense of doom, you should flip on the light, grab your journal and pen, and begin to scribble down your thoughts. Expressing gratitude as the first task of the day will set the tone for the hours to come. The words you write will resonate with importance throughout the day.
Since gratitude breeds positivity, when your feet hit the floor, you'll always wake up on the right side of the bed, no matter what side you're on!
Okay, lame analogy aside, there's some science behind journaling first thing in the morning. Your subconscious is most active when you first wake up, allowing you to deal with potential issues that may have hidden themselves before. Also, since you're performing a mental task, your brain will quickly awaken, so you'll be able to go about your morning routine without trudging around like a tired mess.
2. The Kitchen
You shouldn't skip breakfast (or leg day). Eating a healthy, balanced meal will give you the energy you need to tackle the tasks of the day.
So, while you're waiting for your coffee to brew, you may want to take a few moments to write down what makes you thankful. You could even show gratitude towards the crisp aroma of your coffee.
One aspect of journaling in the kitchen, which may isn't always evident, is how it benefits your nutrition. Many times, our diets are unsuccessful due to negative thoughts and misunderstood priorities. By starting your day with the positivity of gratitude while making breakfast, you'll be able to get into the proper mindset to conquer your health goals.
Also, practicing gratitude and mindfulness can be done while you eat. The practice known as mindful eating trains your brain to focus on every aspect of your meal while understanding the nourishment that it provides.
Not only will you be healthier, but the tenants of mindful eating may transfer effectively into other aspects of your life.
3. The Toilet
If you're like me, then you are probably a fan of the tinker stinker. You know, whenever you head to the toilet, you tinker with your phone, catching up on the day's news and or scrolling through Instagram.
Instead of wasting this precious alone time, you should use it as an opportunity to journal. It sounds ridiculous, right? But, hear me out!
The toilet is a judgment-free zone. I mean, it's challenging to focus on negative self-talk when yesterday's steak dinner is coming out of you. Yeah, it's gross, but pooping sometimes gives us clarity. Even Urban Dictionary has a word for it: Epoophany. Just a bit inspiration during your constipation.
There's nothing better for journaling than clarity. Ipso facto, while you're going #2, grab a #2 pencil (and notebook), start journaling, and flush your worries away.
Please don't knock it until you try it!
4. The Car
So you've woken up, had breakfast, done your business, and now it's time to go to work.
If you're like me, you probably have to fight your way through traffic every morning mentally. Why has that gold Buick had its turn signal on for the last three miles? My morning commute may be one of the most stressful parts of my day.
According to recent studies, rush hour traffic is one of the most significant stressors in people's lives. It can even lead to more crime!
So, before you head on the road, take a few minutes to jot down what you are thankful for in your life. You'll not only begin to make journaling a habit, but you'll set the tone for your commute, so you don't flip off that guy that's going five miles under the speed limit in the passing lane. It makes me frustrated, just typing it!
Instead of taking a half-an-hour coffee break listening to Don in Accounting talk about how he could have gone pro if he didn't blow out his knee in high school, spend a few minutes at your desk journaling.
Gratitude journals aren't just a place to write what you are grateful for, but they give us a place to store our thoughts without getting lost or twisted throughout the day. It would help if you had your broad career goals listed prominently in the front of the journal to remind you why you put in all that effort at work.
Research shows that failing to meet our goals has a detrimental effect on our future success. So, it's also writing down five attainable goals for the day that will make you feel accomplished and help you work toward your future goals.
While you're at work, you could use your journal to track your productivity or work on your time management skills. It would be best if you did this first thing when you get into the office so that you're not distracted by emails and meetings. You could also use your gratitude journal to record notable advice from your colleagues (except Don, he's still trying to live out his glory days).
In the outdoors, there's an indescribable connection with the living world. The sun is shining bright, the trees are whistling in the breeze, and the squirrels try to find their next nut (aren't we all).
Unfortunately, many of us don't live near a dense forest, but nature's lessons aren't exclusive to the backcountry. At lunch, grab your journal, and head to the nearest park.
Being outside gives us mental clarity, and may even make you feel insignificant - in the right way. It gets you out of your head and enables you to refocus on your priorities. By giving thanks to things in nature, you'll come to appreciate the unforeseen beauty in the little things. You'll begin to exude positivity and happiness in all areas of your life.
7. The Gym
Before you start hammer curling in front of the mirror for thirty minutes, you should take some time to jot down some thoughts in your gratitude journal.
If you're like most bros, you're hitting the gym at least five times a week, and hopefully, not skipping leg day. So by breaking out the journal while you change in the locker room, you'll begin to form a productive habit and associate your workout with positivity.
Also, many of us exercise as a form of stress release. We push our bodies past our boundaries as they flood with much-needed endorphins. The workout high may feel great at first, but it also can be detrimental to your health. Pushing past your limits, or overtraining, also comes with a price. Improper form can lead to severe joint and tendon issues. So, if you get some of those intrusive thoughts inked in the journal before your workout, you can focus more on real growth.
Gratitude journaling, and journaling in general, helps us to create a story of our progress. You could incorporate your fitness progress into your journaling habit. You'll begin to recognize your actual goals and what they mean to you.
For example, are you lifting merely to pick up that insta-chick in the squat rack? Or, are you lifting to better your health? Perhaps you are even lifting to improve your self-confidence or body image? Your journey is yours, and yours alone, so understanding your motivation will only better your progress towards your goal.
Before your muscles grow, let your conscience grow too.
8. Your "Spot"
Everyone needs their "spot." It's the real place that makes you feel comfortable and at peace with your surroundings. It may be something cozy like a recliner next to a bay window. Or, it could be something more chaotic, like a Starbucks, where the "Karens" arguing with the Barista somehow allows you to focus.
My "spot" is my home office. Well, it's not much of an office; it's more of a 2'x2' nook built into the wall. It's not much, but when I sit in my chair and roll under the desk, my mind instantly goes into productive mode. It's all systems go.
If you don't have a "spot," you should find one. Studies have shown that location is just as important as concentration when it comes to memory. The environment in which you write should give you a liberating feeling, a place where you can be your true self.
The same goes for keeping a gratitude journal. If your mind is at ease and focused in your "spot," you'll be able to better yourself, blocking out life's distractions and concentrating on what truly matters.
Your Journey - Your Journal
I can't be the one to tell you the best place to journal. Each location has to have meaning in your life. It should be a place where you can shift your perspective and prioritize your feelings. The key is to make this journal a habit. Every day, you should write down what you are thankful for to kill your negative thoughts and spread positivity into your life, as well as the lives of others.
If you don't know where to start your gratitude journey, we've got the perfect journal for you: The Bro Journal. We've crafted a 60-day guided journal that focuses on mindfulness and gratitude. It has tons of activities, prompts, and self-reflection, so that you can better yourself. Discover what we have to offer at The Bro Journal, or buy one for yourself!