Claudia Chan

Professional Certified Life Coach
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What to write in your journal

November 9, 2022

I am a big fan of journaling, and at the same time, I don’t do it consistently. 

Here is something I learned, it’s ok, I still love myself! For so long I beat myself up for not being consistent.

I believe some people get scared of starting journaling because
1) they think that they have to write in it everyday, and they don’t know if they can do it, so they don’t start.
And 2) they don’t know what to write, so they don’t start. 

If you can’t write in it everyday, it’s not a big deal! Just try to enjoy it when you do! The more you get to enjoy it and not put too much pressure on yourself, the more you'll find yourself journaling. 

Nothing to stress about! 

As to what to write, I’ll share with you how I do it, so you can pick and choose what works best for you!


Before I share that, why journal? 

Let’s talk about what is the main reason why it’s good to journal. 

For some people, they believe that journalling means to record the things that have happened in their lives. That was how I saw it before I started coaching.

Now, I use it to get to understand myself more. To see what exactly is in my head. It’s also a way for me to visualize my future self. 

So I now use it more as a conversation with myself, to verbalize what's inside my brain so I can get to know myself more, and to build my future character. 

How to start

When I sit down to do a “formal” journaling session, I break it down into 5 sections. 

1. 5 min gratitude 
2. 10 min thought download 
3. 5 min unintentional thought model
4. 5 min intentional thought model 
5. 5 min love letter from my future self to my present self 

1. 5 min gratitude 

I start off writing 5 min of things I’m grateful for in my life. 

It doesn’t matter what it is, it can be as simple as having clean water to drink and take a bath with. I start listing out everything I am thankful for in my life. 

2. 10 min thought download

I would either focus on a topic, like what do I think about how I’m doing in regards to my business, or how my relationship is like with a certain person.

Sometimes I just do a brain dump on why I’m feeling anxious, or whatever is on my mind.

It doesn’t matter what it is, I just write down whatever is in my head.

3. 5 min unintentional thought model

I would pick one sentence from the previous section, and I would see how this thought is creating my current feeling, actions and result in my life.

4. 5 min intentional thought model

I would then choose what result I want to create, or how I want to feel, and work backwards to figure out what thought I need to have. 

5. 5 min Love letter from my future self to my present self. 

This is the part where I drop into my future self, and ask what loving things she would like to say to the present self. 

So that would be how I would write in my journal if I have about 30 min. 

Crunch on time?

When I don't have a lot of time, I just ask myself what thoughts am I thinking about right now, and quickly dump it out of my head, and I’d ask myself, how would I like to show up? And what thoughts do I need to think right now

Which will be a very short 5 min journal entry. 

If you’re planning to start journaling, and you find yourself stuck because you don’t know what to write about, or you’re concerned about not being able to follow through, I want to share this with you. 

I beat myself up over this too, and it made me not want to write in it anymore, because it became a chore in itself! And who wants THAT?

Journalling is just a tool.

And if you think this is the most useful tool for you at the moment, or if you really want to write it at the moment, then go for it. 

Otherwise, don’t beat yourself up for it .

Do it because it’s fun! 

Claudia Chan

Professional Certified Life Coach


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