Keeping a journal can help you understand the past, record the present and plan for the future. Even if a lot of what ends up in your journal is stuff you already know or feel, putting it on paper helps you reflect and examine your actions and reactions. After a while, you will start to see patterns. Ideas emerge that clarify your goals, help you identify positive and negative influences in your life and even direct you toward more positive life choices.
There are many types of journals you can keep: a daily log to help you remember what you've done and felt, a journal with a focus like travel plans, logging specific activities like workouts, unloading your fears and worries, unleashing your creativity, helping you sleep, recording your dreams or simply writing whatever comes to mind. Your journal's purpose will determine when you write and how much. Check out these four types of journaling to see if one would work for you.