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Whether you have been journaling for a while and have lost your spark, or you are brand new to the practice, one issue you might come across is getting confused on what to write and where. While there are no rules you need to follow when it comes to having a journal, some people find it easier to be dedicated to it when they have layouts and templates that allow for better organization.
Separate it Into Sections
The first step to setting up your journal if you want it to be a little more organized is to separate it into sections. Most journals just include a notebook with a certain number of pages, but don’t have any type of dividers. If this is the type of journal you are using, then you will need to create this organization on your own. Printable tabs are a great option to accomplish this.
You might want to start by making a list of what you plan to journal about, so that you can see if any specific categories jump out at you.
For example, if you want to use the journal for what you are thinking about daily, expressing gratitude, and working on your personal goals, then you know you need at least 3 different sections for the journal. Others might have more or less, depending on what your personal preferences are.
Add an Index and Page Numbers
While this is more commonly done in bullet journals, there is no reason you can’t do it with your regular journal!
A lot of times, you don’t know how many directions your journal is going to take, and before long, you get your thoughts and ideas jumbled on different pages. When it comes to looking for a specific page, it can take a long time and get frustrating. This is why page numbers and using an index is handy.
Start numbering all your pages, then make a note of what that specific entry was about. You can then add the subject or topic to the index at the beginning of your journal with the page number, making it easy to reference later.
Consider Printable Pages
Another way to set up your journal and really have the pages organized is to use printable pages. These can be those you put in different sections of your current journal, or by having a journal in binder form, making it really easy to print anything you want and to move pages around as needed.
There are many printables, both free and for a fee, that offer templates and prompts for your journal. These are pages that are lined, with certain topics, daily journal pages where you input how your day was, mood trackers, health pages, and so many more.