Toward the end of last year, when I was very ill, journaling became detrimental to what little health I had left. I spent hours ruminating and writing down all my thoughts and feelings, and it made my depression and anxiety worse not better.
It was when I was admitted to hospital in January that I stopped journaling, and I didn’t start again until September, when I was feeling a lot better and had some really positive topics to journal about: recovery, wellness and creativity.
Back in the Spring, April or May I think it was, I discovered arting and crafting tutorials on Youtube and started binge watching them, and gradually I began trying out the things I was seeing. I’ve always been creative and able to paint and draw, so I picked up the techniques pretty quickly and soon started creating on a daily basis. Long story short … I now make and sell handmade greetings cards, and I’ve also been getting into art journaling and, what I like to call, artful journaling. Art Journaling appears to be about making mixed media spreads in fairly hefty books, often adding a simple motivational quote. Artful journaling is a bit different; it’s more about writing as you would in a diary while also artfully decorating the pages, either before or after writing. Of course, there is some crossover between the two, but I’m definitely drawn more to the artful journaling end of the spectrum. If you want to know what I mean, you can take a look at some of the recent videos on my YouTube channel, or check out Ali Brown – she has inspired me more than anyone. James Burke is also a must watch.
Anyhoo … in the New Year, I’m planning on shifting the focus of this blog from recovering from mental illness to maintaining wellness through creativity, mindfulness, prayerful meditation and good planning, so I’m currently putting together a list of topics to blog about – artful journaling is going to be one of them and will probably be a big focus for a while. I’m going to talk about how it’s helped me find joy in journaling again, how it’s helping me be mindful of my thoughts and feelings and of all the good things in my life, and how it’s given me freedom in my art and writing once more. I’ll also be publishing some ‘how to’ posts and making my own video tutorials for YouTube.
Thanks for reading! x
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