Journaling is more than just writing down how your day went. It’s an act of introspection, which urges you to come face-to-face with personal decisions and unsaid emotions, while helping you come to terms with how they have affected and can still affect your life.

“A journal is an avenue for self-reflection,” says calligrapher Abbey Sy in the opening letter of her upcoming book with Summit Books entitled The ABCs of Journaling. “It’s the best friend that helps you know yourself better. It’s a compilation of stories, memories, and the little things that make life great. And over time, it becomes more than just a repository of your personal experiences. It also serves as a reminder that the best part of life is not about where you’re going, but where you’re headed right now.”

Whether you’re standing at the crossroads of a major life decision, or tired of floating along without any goal in mind, journaling can indeed make your personal journey a better experience. Here’s how religiously writing things down can help you create your own roadmap that can eventually lead you to the right path:

1. It encourages you to be more honest with yourself.
When you journal, there’s nothing else but a pen, a notebook, and you. You’re free to write about anything that you want, and no one will judge you or chastise you for what you feel. It’s looking at and into yourself without filters – something that may seem hard the first time you do it. Don’t worry: Being honest with yourself takes time especially when you’re used to hiding from your own emotions, but given time, you’ll learn to accept them as they are and turn them into the positive energy you’ll need to push you towards where you want to be.

2. It gives you the chance to understand a situation objectively.

There are times in your life when you seem to be stuck in a place that you can’t seem to figure out. If your thoughts feel too abstract in your head, try writing them down. Writing is a good way of processing things, and it helps you see different points of view by urging you to reminisce and reflect.

3. It helps you calm down.
When things spiral out of control, journaling can give you a semblance of order. Putting your feelings on paper is better than bottling them up inside, and it can help you keep you stay logical and anchored to reality.

4. It gives you a priceless chronicle of your journey.

Having a journal is having an overview of your life on paper. Reading previous entries can give you a look into past joys and hurts that have made you into the person that you are now. Although it may remind you of situations that you’d rather forget, it can also help you realize that you have many things to be grateful for. Moreover, looking back can help you move forward, and whether or not you know where your journey will take you, at least you have something that can guide you towards your destination.

To get you started, head to National Book Store at Glorietta 1 on Saturday, September 10, from 1pm to 6pm to for the launch of Abbey Sy’s The ABCs of Journaling. Get to meet the author, plus enjoy craft activities and workshops that will help enrich the writer in you.

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The ABCs of Journaling is now available in newsstands, bookstores, convenience stores, and supermarkets nationwide for P350.

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