When I was younger, I binge-read the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series, which is written and illustrated by Jeff Kinney. Not only were the novels roll-on-the-floor hilarious (and very relatable), but they’ve inspired me to start a journal.

The idea of diaries may seem cheesy, but I’ve found that journaling can make your life that much better, even if it’s merely one sentence a day.

Journaling is essentially writing down your thoughts and feelings, whether it be in a typical “Dear Diary”, complete with hot pink sparkles and a “secure” lock, or a simple notebook.

Jotting down what’s on your mind is one of the best ways to harness creativity and self-expression. Writing about negative experiences can help you analyze them and find different ways to approach similar situations in the future.

However, that doesn’t mean it’s only necessary to acknowledge journaling after tough instances.

Positive moments are almost always the ones you want to remember. Studies have proven that writing things down makes them resonate with you. So, if there’s a blissful event that you never want to let go of, with journaling, you don’t have to.

Speaking of optimistic diaries, I’ve seen many people post about gratitude journals on social media. I think this is a creative way to remind ourselves of what we already have, especially if writing down negative thoughts is something you don’t want to steer toward.

Along with pictures, writing about travel experiences can be another souvenir from your trips. I find that some vacations are so special that there won’t ever be others like them. It may seem tiresome to write down every cool attraction and cherishable moment, but the reminiscence afterward definitely makes it worthwhile.

Above all, I believe the greatest upside to journaling is being able to have a judgement-free place to share your thoughts. There are numerous people that either have no one to go to or are terrified of opening up. The feeling of relief you get after using a pen to reciprocate your thoughts is unparalleled.

Aspiring journalist Harini Senthilkumar will be a ninth-grader at Eden Prairie High School this fall. She enjoys singing and writing.

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