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Creative Journaling: A New Year's Resolution That Will (Actually) Enhance Your Life by Anaya Davis


As we enter a new year, many of us are feeling the pressure to change or improve

something about ourselves. We are creating new goals, plans, and resolutions that will enhance

our lives throughout the year and for years to come. What better way is there to kick off 2024

than to begin a creative journal?


Creative journaling is a great way to delve into your imagination while exploring and

understanding your identity and life experiences. It incorporates words, images, colors, symbols,

poetry, doodles, and abstract designs to encourage comprehensive exploration of the self. A

creative journal is a place to express inspiration, joy, and excitement, as well as to process more

deep and sorrowful emotions. It provides a safe space to enhance personal growth and

development and allows you to exercise honesty and transparency without fear of outside

judgment.


It is important to note that a creative journal does not have to be organized in a

methodical, categorical, or rigid way. It can be helpful to order your journal sequentially and

document things as they happen. This will help you document your experiences as you live them.

Remember: life evolves organically and spontaneously; your journal should reflect this. As

you allow yourself to document your life freely and creatively, you may find that you feel less

stressed, more in tune with your thoughts and feelings, and more open to new ideas and

experiences.


In her creative journal program, Lucia Capacchione provides imaginative activities that help

you explore your own identity, your higher self, how you interact with yourself and others, where

you are in life and where you envision yourself. These exercises can help you express your

feelings, understand your creative potential, enrich your relationship with yourself and others,

understand your life experiences, and find deeper meaning in your life. For those of you who are

skeptical or apprehensive about tapping into your artistic side, The Artist’s Way is a great

a resource to help rediscover your passion for creating.


Pablo Picasso once said, “Painting is just another way of keeping a diary.” This year,

rediscover your creative self and explore the power of creative journaling.


References


Baikie, K. A., Wilhelm, K. (2005). Emotional and physical health benefits of expressive writing.

Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 11(5), 338-346. https://doi.org/10.1192/apt.11.5.338


Cameron, J. (1992). The artist’s way: A spiritual path to higher creativity. New York, New York,

TarcherPerigee.


Capacchione, L. (1979). The creative journal: The art of finding yourself. Swallow Press/Ohio

University Press.


Pennebaker, J. W. (1997). Opening up: The healing power of expressing emotions (Rev. ed.).

Guilford Press.


Pennebaker, J. W. (1997). Writing about emotional experiences as a therapeutic

process. Psychological Science, 8(3), 162–166. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-

9280.1997.tb00403.x


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