I love journals. I love buying them. I love collecting them. I love gazing at them in the bookstore with inspirational wonder and awe. I don’t always love actual journaling. I have approximately eight half-filled journals at home, and those are just the ones I can immediately remember. I stick with it for about three weeks, and then I’ve promptly forgotten about it. Yet, three months later, I’m in World Market falling in love with another cardboard-bound beauty.
There are a lot of benefits to journaling regularly. It can help relieve stress, navigate difficult emotions, and improve your mood. If you’re like me, however, with stacks of well-intentioned pages, the thought of regularly writing about your day can feel like another chore.
Thankfully, there’s more than one way to effectively document your life in a way that feels natural and sincere. Whether you’re an analytical type with a love of to-do lists or prefer more idealistic, artistic spreads, here are a few ways your Myers-Briggs personality type can help you find the right type of journaling.
ISTJ, ISFJ, ESTJ, ESFJ
Your love for practicality and stability make you a perfect candidate for the increasingly popular bullet journal. This tried-and-true method gives you a straightforward way of organizing your goals and keeps you productive. Your analytical nature makes this an easy pick. The bullet journal is perfect for customization, so have fun with it. If you’re unfamiliar with bullet journaling or feel a little overwhelmed by it, here’s a short video to help you get started.
INFJ, INFP, ENFP, ENFJ
You’re a diplomat who appreciates harmony when working with others. You work well in teams, and you are both inspiring and easily inspired by those around you. Turn that inspiration into an art journal. Working creatively can be therapeutic in itself, a review at the American Journal of Public Health found. Those who took part in one of the studies reviewed experienced significantly reduced stress, decreased anxiety, and increased positive emotions after taking part in art therapy.
Create collages with quotes, images, and people that invigorate you. Or, experiment with watercolors, pastels, and even crayons. Remember, no matter what journal you do, the only person you’re doing it for is yourself.
INTJ, INTP, ENTJ, ENTP
Yep, planners totally count as a type of journal. And it’s proven that writing down your goals makes you more likely to achieve them.
Like the bullet journal types, you are strategic thinkers who work well with to-do lists and logistics. Your day feels much easier when you outline your tasks. Whether you prefer looking at your time on a weekly or monthly basis, there are plenty of planner options to choose from. Try these tips for figuring out exactly what your goals are, and then learn how to really make them stick.
ISTP, ISFP, ESTP, ESFP
You love life and enjoy each moment as it comes. Take some time to live in the present with a gratitude journal. These journals have their own specific health benefits: In one study, those who wrote about the things they were grateful for showed better enthusiasm, attention, and energy than those who didn’t. Gratitude is so important that we included filling one out as one of seven steps to happy women.
Make a list of as few or as many things you are grateful for today, and don’t stress about how many you should or shouldn’t have. Like all journals, this is about what you make it to be.