16 ways how to use your notebooks

Recently, when I was selling my handmade notebooks at a Design Fair, a young woman told me while looking at my covers, “well, they are beautiful, but I have no clue what I could write in it!”.

Back home, I realized this young lady is probably not the only one perplexed and decided to make a list. I am sharing it with you now.

1- Write your journal

The best way to keep track about what is going on in your mind and in your life, to set goals and plan how to achieve them is to write a journal. Socrates once said “An unexamined life is not worth living” and all the journal writers strongly agree with him.

2- Keep a Food journal

What you eat, when you eat,what is the amount and how you feel before, during and after eating are a few tips on what you could write in a food diary. It might help you identify your eating habits, and correct them if necessary.

3- Gratitude journal

Keep a gratitude journal if you wish to focus your attention on the positive things in your life. Remember a good event, experience, person, or thing and then enjoy the good feelings that come with it.

4- Bullet Journal

Created by Ryder Carroll, a bullet journal is a time planner, a diary and a to-do list in one. An index allows you to easily find all you decided to write in it. You can use it to plan your next trip to Italy, write lists of books you want to read, plan your week day after day…

5- Travel journal

I kept my first travel journal in 1996 travelling around Europe with a friend. Now it is a family matter. We take our travel journal with us for dinner and have fun filling in the experiences of the day, what was amusing, what we saw, who said what to whom…Drawing, sticking, archiving maps, postcards and various papers is definitely part of the fun.

6- Sport journal

Keep track of your training, performances, mental mindset. Serena Williams and Michael Phelps among others are known to keep a sport journal and it seems it works well for them.

7- Dear Data Journal

Dear Data is a project created by Giorgia Lupi and Stefanie Posavec. It's all about collecting weekly data about a topic, finding a way to categorize them, represent them in a drawing form, and imagining a key that enables anyone to read the information. If the topic is for instance “mirrors” or “checking my phone”, a notebook will be a great help to recall all the data!

8- Dream Journal

Record your dreams on a regular basis, track their themes and patterns over time, and you will discover through your own experience many of the key psychological principles that shape the general process of dreaming.

Beyond that, you may find your journal becomes a unique personal treasure—an invaluable source of insight into your most important concerns, activities, and relationships in the waking world.

Carl Jung, one of the pioneers of Western dream psychology, proposed back in the 1930’s that a series of dreams can provide an extremely useful means of exploring an individual’s life.

9- Tarot journal

Put your intuition on speed dial by creating a unique and personal connection with the cards. Become familiar with the cards by exploring what they mean to you. Keep track of your readings and create new spreads!

10- Sketch notebook

Yes, a sketch notebook! It does not matter if your drawing skills are poor. Drawing on a regular basis will help you improve. You will also become more observant of the details and it will help you relax.

11- Morning pages’journal

Julia Cameron in her book “The Artist’s way” explains “Morning Pages are three pages of longhand, stream of consciousness writing, done first thing in the morning. *There is no wrong way to do Morning Pages*–they are not high art. They are not even “writing.” They are about anything and everything that crosses your mind– and they are for your eyes only. Morning Pages provoke, clarify, comfort, cajole, prioritize and synchronize the day at hand. Do not over-think Morning Pages: just put three pages of anything on the page...and then do three more pages tomorrow.”

12- Bucket list journal

Set anything and everything you’ve ever wanted to do whether it’s big, small or random. Writing bucket list is like planning ahead all the highlights you want for your whole life. Keeping a bucket list journal help you to stay consistent with your goals and to keep track of your progress.

13- Inspirational quotes’journal

Inspiration is all around! In the walls of our cities, in the mouth of our friends, in the books we read and the movies we watch. I love to write down these little pieces of wisdom! “Don’t look at all of them, look at each of them. Each face is an icon.” is my last entry (heard in a book festival this week-end).

14-Yoga journal

Sequences, postures, hints, pieces of wisdom, notes from workshop, your feelings before and after a Yoga class, mental awareness, sankalpa, there is a lot to write about in a Yoga journal!

15- Cooking journal

A place to keep all the recipes others are sharing with you.

16- Movies, books and exhibitions journal

What you want to see, read, visit and what you think about it, how you like it and what it gave to you. It’s a great place to archive strips of newspapers, leaflets, quotes, pictures… you would like to keep.

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