How to Start a Morning Journaling Routine as a Busy Mom

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Years ago, I dreamed about being the type of person who journaled everyday. I would read about how other’s used journaling on a daily basis, and how it brought them clarity, and calmness. I wanted that!

But no matter how hard I tried, I could not get into a journaling routine. I had cute notebooks and journals (bought while waiting in the checkout line at HomeGoods), but they would sit pretty on my bookshelf collecting dust.

Every time I attempted to journal, I would feel overwhelmed. I wasn’t sure what I should write about. Do I write about my day? Do I write about my inner most thoughts? Do I write about whatever current problem I was facing? Too many options so I felt overwhelmed and would just give up.

Plus, I believed that a good journaling practice had to take around 30 minutes or more. But I really didn’t have that time to devote to journaling!

I would constantly start and then give up on the whole process days later.

It wasn’t until 2021 that I started a consistent journaling practice. I don’t necessarily journal every single day, but it’s rare that 2 or 3 days go by that I haven’t journaled.

The only time I journal is during my morning routine. If I don’t do it then, the day gets away from me and I won’t make time to do it.

My consistent journal practice has been a form of therapy. I’ve had some real breakthroughs just by writing out everything that’s going on in my mind. I’m also a more patient, happier mom due to a journaling practice I took part in a few years ago.

Keep reading to find out how I became someone who constantly reaps the benefits of a morning journaling routine, and how you can do the same!

Why is a journaling routine important?

I like to think of journaling as a way to empty out all the “stuff” that gets stuck in your brain and causes overwhelm and sometimes, anxiety!

Journaling helps you clean out all the clutter in your mind, then you have the ability to do what you want with it.

I ALWAYS feel more calm and centered after I’m done journaling, no matter what I’m writing about.

A few years ago, I started journaling about my struggles as a mom. I was feeling really guilty and shameful about how I was showing up for the kids. I was yelling a lot, had little patience, and felt irritated most of the time.

I created a few questions for myself to answer, and from there, I journaled every morning for 5-10 minutes. Just these few minutes a day started to transform the way I was showing up as a mom. I gained so much awareness and recognized so many areas where I was really hard on myself and my kids and I didn’t need to be.

It was through the journaling that I became a happier mom. I was so amazed and grateful for the transformation that I created a whole blog series and journal about it. You can find that here.

Obviously, I’m bias about journaling, but WebMD wrote this article and listed the following mental health benefits from journaling:

  • Reduces anxiety
  • Helps reduce obsessive thinking
  • Creates awareness and helps change perception
  • Regulates emotions
  • Can speed up physical healing – “A study on 49 adults in New Zealand found that those who wrote for 20 minutes about their feelings on upsetting events healed faster after a biopsy than those who wrote about daily activities.”

Journaling is something you can do for free, from the comfort of your home, to improve your mental health. This is why I love it so much and often “preach” to others about the importance of journaling.

My Current + Past Journaling Routine

Currently, I take 10 minutes during my morning routine to journal. As of right now, I just write about whatever is going on in my mind. It never fails, when I’m done with those 10 minutes, I feel so much more relaxed.

I also will take 2 minutes to write out about my goals for the year as if they’ve already happened. I call this practice “Future Focus” and I’ve found it tremendously helpful in making sure my goals stay top of mind and I work on them throughout the year. I’ve done this for over 2 years now and it’s helped me to accomplish about 85% of my goals. You can read more about this practice here.

In the past, I’ve journaled about the following (and always in the morning for no more than 10 minutes a day):

  • Anytime I’m working with a coach, I ask for homework in the form of journal prompts to answer. I’ll spend 10 minutes a day answering the journal prompts. This helps to really cement whatever it is we are working on, and it uncovers more stuff to work on during coaching.
  • I’ve used guided journals like this **“Question a Day Journal” and this **“Three Year Mom Journal”. I don’t necessarily write in them daily. Instead, I’ll set my timer for 10 minutes and fill out as much as I can in that timeframe.
  • When I started diving into changing how I parented, I created this “Angry to Happy Mom Journal” (that goes along with this blog series). I set my timer for 10-20 minutes a day and answered the questions in the journal. I had so many “aha” moments just through journaling. I started feeling more patient and calm with my kids and less aggravated. I also started giving myself more grace with how I handled things so I didn’t feel so guilty all the time.

How to Start a Morning Journaling Routine

If you have a morning routine already, then I recommend adding on 10-20 minutes for journaling. This might mean you have to wake up earlier, or it might mean that you decide to replace something else in your morning with journaling.

When you figure out when you will do the journaling, the next step is to commit to one type of journaling to test out. I’ve provided you with some ideas of what motivated me to start journaling and stick to a routine. Pick one type of journaling and commit to trying it for 7 days. Once those 7 days are over, you can decide if it’s the right kind of journaling for you. You’ll find even more journaling options here.

Remember, journaling doesn’t have to take a long time, unless you want it to. The biggest mistake you’ll make is believing that it has to be a complicated process and take time. If you believe it’s going to take up too much of your time, you’re brain will throw a fit and tell you not to do it.

Once your 7 days of trying out the journaling is up, reflect on how it went (you can even journal about this ;-)). and decide if it will work for you. Think about how you felt after you journaled, and if you’ve noticed any difference in how your day goes when you start out by journaling. The great thing about journaling is that you’ll have a record for yourself of this point in time and that’s always fun to look back on.

If you’re struggling to put a morning routine together, I can help you! Take advantage of these blog posts here, and don’t forget to add journaling to your new routine.

What Will Your Morning Journaling Routine Look Like?

Now that you have seen my journaling routine, and have some tips for how to create your own, what will your journaling routine look like? If you have a journaling routine you enjoy, share it in the comments below.

And remember, start with only a few minutes a day, it’s consistency over quantity!

*There might be affiliate links on this page, which means I get a small commission of anything you buy. As an Amazon Associate earn from qualifying purchases. Please do your own research before making any online purchase.*

Don’t forget to grab your FREE Quick Guide to Lessen Overwhelm + Enjoy Motherhood More by clicking here!

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