Journaling is an incredible tool for personal growth, self-reflection, and creative expression. By keeping a journal, students can capture their experiences, thoughts, and emotions.

Why might students consider journaling this summer?  In anticipation of the college admissions process, here are a few reasons that journaling might be helpful:

Journaling can help students to navigate emotion throughout the admissions process.

The admissions process is a stressful, emotional journey.  Many students struggle to navigate the highs and the lows of rejection, uncertainty and more.  Adding a practice of journaling might help students learn the skills to navigate these emotions in the future.

Keeping a journal can promote introspection.

Introspection is an extremely valuable skill throughout the admissions process.  It comes in handy when writing essays, considering what schools to apply to, choosing a school and more.  Keeping a journal can promote looking inward and getting in touch with one’s inner monologue.

It can provide an exercise in creativity.

Journaling can help foster creativity, helping students think outside the box on essays and be more conversational with the admissions professionals in interviews.

Journaling can strengthen writing skills.

The best way to become a better writer? Write more! Journaling doesn’t have to be formalized, grammatically sound, spell-checked and edited—just the act of putting words on the page can help improve student’s writing.

Summer vacations provide a unique opportunity to start your journal.  During this time, many students have experiences outside of their comfort zone–exploring new places, experiencing different cultures, trying new hobbies, gaining work experience and more.  Furthermore, with no homework, many students may have more time on their hands to journal.

Ideas for Your Journal

Here are a few ideas to inspire journaling:

  1. Daily Logs: Journaling can be as simple as a daily log, where students can document daily activities, places, people, and any exciting encounters or experiences. This can help students remember small details, process their days, and develop storytelling abilities.
  2. Creative Expression: Journals can be used as a vehicle for creative expression.  Consider including sketches, drawings, or even paste mementos like ticket stubs, postcards, or photographs to create a visual record of past experiences.
  3. Gratitude practice: Consider a daily gratitude practice, observing as little as one thing a day to be grateful for. This practice cultivates mindfulness and a sense of appreciation.
  4. Goal setting: Journaling can be used to look into the future, and set realistic goals. It can be helpful to visualize the steps to achieve desired outcomes.

Having trouble getting started?  It can be useful to set aside time each day dedicated for reflection and writing.

If you have any questions or would like further suggestions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.