82 Inspirational Quotes About Journaling to Reflect On

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Journaling is so much more than just writing; it’s a journey of self-discovery, a therapeutic outlet, and a way to log your thoughts, emotions, and experiences.

Whether you’re a seasoned journal writer or just starting out, there’s something really powerful about the act of pouring your thoughts onto the pages of your journal.

I know firsthand just how transformative the practice of journaling can be, which is why it’s been a staple practice of mine for many years now.

There are many positive things I could say about journaling, but why not let some of the world’s most influential writers and speakers do that for me?

In this post, you’ll find 82 inspirational quotes about journaling that are bound to inspire you to pick up that pen and start writing!

82 inspirational quotes about journaling to inspire you

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Why Read Quotes About Journaling?

You might be wondering, why bother reading quotes about journaling when you could be spending the time actually writing in your journal instead?

Well, truth be told, despite how beneficial journaling can be for us, there will be days when we just don’t want to pick up the pen.

From my experience, when I’m feeling particularly low in mood, my motivation for the things that serve me tends to slip. In times like this, we often just need a little encouragement to get started.

You might like to think of it as a warm-up exercise for your mind – just as stretching primes your muscles for a workout, reading quotes about journaling can help you get in the right frame of mind to get introspective.

82 Inspirational Quotes About Journaling to Inspire You to Write

The quotes in this post offer nuggets of wisdom, motivation, and insight from some of the greatest minds in literature, psychology, and beyond.

They remind us of the transformative power of journaling and encourage us to explore the depths of our own thoughts and emotions, even when we don’t really feel like it!

  1. “Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”William Wordsworth
  2. “I can shake off everything if I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn.”Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl
  3. “I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means.”Joan Didion, Let Me Tell You What I Mean
  4. “Keeping a journal of what’s going on in your life is a good way to help you distil what’s important and what’s not.”Martina Navratilova
  5. “I write to give myself strength. I write to be the characters that I am not. I write to explore all the things I’m afraid of.”Joss Whedon
  6. “Journal writing, when it becomes a ritual for transformation, is not only life-changing but life-expanding.”Jen Williamson
  7. “Journaling has become one of the most gratifying and fulfilling practices of my life. Not only do I derive the daily benefits of consciously directing my thoughts and putting them in writing, but even more powerful are those I have gained from reviewing my journals.”Hal Elrod
  8. “I don’t journal to “be productive.” I don’t do it to find great ideas, or to put down prose I can later publish. The morning pages aren’t intended for anyone but me. Morning pages are, as author Julia Cameron puts it, “spiritual windshield wipers.” It’s the most cost-effective therapy I’ve ever found.”Tim Ferriss
  9. “In the journal, I do not just express myself more openly than I could do to any person; I create myself. The journal is a vehicle for my sense of selfhood.”Susan Sontag
  10. “Journaling is like whispering to one’s self and listening at the same time.”Mina Murray
"journaling is like whispering to one's self and listening at the same time." journaling quote by Mina Murray
  1. “Journal writing is a voyage to the interior.”Christina Baldwin
  2. “Keep a notebook. Travel with it, eat with it, sleep with it. Slap into it every stray thought that flutters up into your brain.”Jack London
  3. “A personal journal is an ideal environment in which to become. It is a perfect place for you to think, feel, discover, expand, remember, and dream.”Brad Wilcox
  4. “Writing in a journal reminds you of your goals and of your learning in life. It offers a place where you can hold a deliberate, thoughtful conversation with yourself.”Robin Sharma
  5. “Journal writing gives us insights into who we are, who we were, and who we can become. Experience your pain. Embrace your silence. When the time feels right, find your way back to your words — and write.” – Sandra Marinella
  6. “Your journal will stand as a chronicle of your growth, your hopes, your fears, your dreams, your ambitions, your sorrows, your serendipities.”Kathleen Adams
  7. “All the noise in my brain. I clamp it to the page so it will be still.”Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
  8. “Writing in a daily journal is important but the reason why I journal is because I can read my own writing after many months have passed by. I’m able to reflect on my life, my actions, my behaviours, my memories and also the behaviour of others around me.”Nando Prudhomme
  9. “A journal can offer you a place to be someone, anyone, who you want to be.”Brian Ledger
  10. “Writing in your journal gives you a chance to go back over your day and extract meaning from a hurried meeting with a friend or retrieve the significance of some fleeting event.”Janette Rainwater
"A personal journal is an ideal environment in which to become. It is a perfect place for you to think, feel, discover, expand, remember, and dream." quote about journaling by Brad Wilcox
  1. “If you want to write, you need to keep an honest, unpublishable journal that nobody reads, nobody but you.”Madeleine L’Engle
  2. “We’re drawn to making our mark, leaving a record to show we were here, and a journal is a great place to do it.”Keri Smith
  3. “Writing in a journal gives me a place to report, interpret, argue, reflect, save, question, predict, unload, praise, compare, cry, laugh, draw, paint, and remember.”Luci Swindoll
  4. “Journaling is an offshoot of meditation— a type of introspection where a record of events is welcome. It doesn’t have to mean the record is permanent. In fact, it’s probably better as ephemeral— permanently locked behind a password. But, the fact that it exists is a comfort in itself.”C.J. Chilvers
  5. “Write hard and clear about what hurts.”Ernest Hemingway
  6. “Journal what you love, what you hate, what’s in your head, what’s important. Journaling organises your thoughts; allows you to see things in a concrete way that otherwise you might not see.”Kay WalkingStick
  7. “Your journal is like your best friend. You don’t have to pretend with it, you can be honest and write exactly how you feel”Bukola Ogunwale
  8. “I owe a good deal to this journal. By unburdening my mind on paper I feel, as it were, in some degree to get rid of it; it seems made over to a friend that hears it patiently, keeps it faithfully, and by never forgetting anything, is always ready to compare the past & present and thus to cheer & edify the future.”Anne Lister
  9. “So I often feel like the self that I construct in writing feels truer to how I think of myself than the self I’m constructing in any other way.”Yaa Gyasi
  10. “Having the courage to reckon with our emotions and to rumble with our stories is the path to writing our brave new ending.”Brené Brown, Rising Strong
"Write hard and clear about what hurts." Journaling quote by Ernest Hemingway.
  1. “Journaling gives you such an appreciation for the good things in your life while also helping you improve on the not-so-good things in your life.”Steve Cicco
  2. “I started writing one afternoon when I was twenty, and ever since then, I have written every day. At first, I had to force myself. Then it became part of my identity, and I did it without thinking.”David Sedaris
  3. “We do not write in order to be understood; we write in order to understand.”Cecil Day-Lewis
  4. “It’s by writing… by stepping back a bit from the real thing to look at it, that we are most present.”Alison Bechdel
  5. “Writing a journal means that facing your ocean you are afraid to swim across it, so you attempt to drink it drop by drop.”George Sand
  6. “Documenting little details of your everyday life becomes a celebration of who you are.”Carolyn V. Hamilton, Art Improv 101: How to Create a Personal Art Journal
  7. “The private contemplation that journaling provides gives us a place to examine what life really means to us … It receives the mood we’re in and preserves it for us to look at and learn from … Every time we chronicle our thoughts and activities, we are verifying our existence.”Luci Swindoll
  8. “A journal is your completely unaltered voice.”Lucy Dacus
  9. “There is, of course, always personal satisfaction of writing down one’s own experiences so they may be saved, caught and pinned under glass, hoarded against the winter of forgetfulness.” — Anne Morrow Lindbergh, North to the Orient
  10. “Journaling helps you to remember how strong you truly are within yourself.”Asad Meah
"We do not write in order to be understood: we write in order to understand." Quote about journaling by Cecil Day-Lewis.
  1. “My diary entries allow me to keep track of all the things I would like to change about my life.”Stefan Sagmeister
  2. “The best time to begin keeping a journal is whenever you decide to.”Hannah Hinchman, A Life In Hand: Creating the Illuminated Journal
  3. “The true purpose of journaling is to celebrate your life. No matter how small or mundane or redundant, each drawing and little essay you write to commemorate an event or an object or a place makes it all the more special.”Danny Gregory
  4. “A good journal entry— like a good song, or sketch, or photograph— ought to break up the habitual and lift away the film that forms over the eye, the finger, the tongue, the heart. A good journal entry ought to be a love letter to the world.”Anthony Doerr, Four Seasons in Rome: On Twins, Insomnia, and the Biggest Funeral in the History of the World
  5. “What happens to us is not as important as the meaning we assign to it. Journaling helps sort this out.”Michael Hyatt
  6. “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  7. “Writing is the only way I have to explain my own life to myself.”Pat Conroy, My Reading Life
  8. “Keeping a journal will absolutely change your life in ways you’ve never imagined.”Oprah Winfrey
  9. “I don’t know what I think until I write it down.”Joan Didion
  10. “Journaling leads people to life changes, leaps of faith, new insights, and meaningful decisions.”Lynda Monk
"What happens to us is not as important as the meaning we assign to it. Journaling helps sort this out." Journaling quote by Michael Hyatt.
  1. “Writing is medicine. It is an appropriate antidote to injury. It is an appropriate companion for any difficult change.”Julia Cameron
  2. “People who keep journals have life twice.”Jessamyn West
  3. “Writing is my way of expressing – and thereby eliminating – all the various ways we can be wrong-headed.”Zadie Smith
  4. “Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”Louis L’Amour
  5. “Even the busiest people are never too busy to benefit from journaling for just five minutes a day.”Sophia Godkin
  6. “Journaling to me has become important to me because it allows me to be present with a gratitude mindset daily.”Kevin Anderson
  7. “I write in a journal daily. This extraordinary ritual has revolutionized my mindset, transformed my heartset, and generally influenced in my life exponentially.”Robin S. Sharma
  8. “The truth is, journaling can be as simple as capturing a moment in time through a photo or arriving at a clear decision made possible by asking intentional questions.”Marc Champagne
  9. “The deeper benefit of keeping a journal is that it offers a way to be consistently aware or mindful.”Alexandra Johnson
  10. “That’s the thing with a diary, though. In order to record your life, you sort of need to live it, not at your desk, but beyond it, out in the world, where it’s so beautiful, and complex, and painful, that sometimes, you just need to sit down and write about it.”David Sedaris, Theft by Finding: Diaries (1977-2002)
"Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on." Quote about journaling by Louis L'amour.
  1. “The journal is a place to let seeds of new directions freely scatter on the page.”Ellen Bowers
  2. “Everything I know about life, I learned from the daily practice of sitting down to write.”Dani Shapiro
  3. “Once you begin to reap the rewards of your writing, journaling stops being a burden and often becomes the activity you look forward to the most and obtain the greatest value from.” Joyce Chapman
  4. “Keeping a journal has taught me that each day holds something significant, something worth recording. My journal has reminded me again and again of the richness and abundance of my daily life, no matter how mundane or predictable some days may seem.”Kristen Webb Wright
  5. “Journaling is a way of capturing your life one day at a time. It is a wonderful way to be able to reflect on your past whether in good times or bad. It is really easy to forget how wonderful your life is in certain times, and a quick look back allows you to see the people, places visited, and get some perspective.”George Bonelli
  6. “Is not the poet bound to write his own biography? Is there any other work for him but a good journal? We do not wish to know how his imaginary hero, but how he, the actual hero, lived from day to day.”Henry David Thoreau, Walden
  7. “For me, writing is a way of thinking. I write in a journal a lot. I’m a very impatient person, so writing and meditation allow me to slow down and watch my mind; they are containers that keep me in place, hold me still.”Ruth Ozeki
  8. “Writing eases my suffering . . . writing is my way of reaffirming my own existence.”Gao Xingjian
  9. “Journaling […] can be the go-to way you use your mind, maintain daily awareness, and take responsibility for your life.”Eric Maisel
  10. “Someone once said that chopping wood to make a fire warms you twice. Writing a journal is like experiencing everything twice … when you do it and when you reflect upon it as you write.”Steven Wong
"The journal is a place to let seeds of new directions freely scatter on the page." Journaling quote by Ellen Bowers.
  1. “The journal is the ideal place of refuge for the inner self because it constitutes a counterworld: a world to balance the other.”Joyce Carol Oates
  2. “Whether you’re keeping a journal or writing as a meditation, it’s the same thing. What’s important is you’re having a relationship with your mind.”Natalie Goldberg
  3. “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection.”Anaïs Nin
  4. “These are the days” is the name of my main journal. This is to remind myself that “These are the days” no matter what stage of life I’m in. Every season is significant in its own way and it’s worth remembering. This is what motivates me to keep journaling daily about big and small moments alike.” Kt Anderson
  5. “Journaling isn’t about creating great works of literature, it’s about you and how life is impacting on you.”Steve Day
  6. “Writing in a journal activates the narrator function of our minds. Studies have suggested that simply writing down our account of a challenging experience can lower physiological reactivity and increase our sense of well-being, even if we never show what we’ve written to anyone else.”Daniel J Siegel, M.D., Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation
  7. “What would you write if you weren’t afraid?”Mary Karr, The Art of Memoir
  8. “This pouring thoughts out on paper has relieved me. I feel better and full of confidence and resolution.”Diet Eman, Things We Couldn’t Say
  9. “The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.”Anais Nin
  10. “You must remember that your story matters. What you write has the power to save a life, sometimes that life is your own.”Stalina Goodwin, Make It Write!: Put Your Pain To Work Writing Journal
  11. “As there are a thousand thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up the pen to write.”William Makepeace Thackeray
  12. “I never wrote things down to remember; I always wrote things down so I could forget.”Matthew McConaughey, Greenlights
"What would you write if you weren't afraid?" Quote about journaling by Mary Karr.

So, there you have it – those were some of my favourite inspirational quotes about journaling to (re)ignite your passion for putting pen to paper.

Whatever you’re going through in life, I truly believe that journaling has the power to be your greatest companion to guide you through it.

Remember, your motivation for journaling will wax and wane from day to day. But very rarely will we actually regret doing the practice.

So if you ever feel like you lose your spark with journaling, just return to this post and read some of these inspirational journaling quotes; they’re bound to get you excited about writing again!

And if you’re feeling inspired, check out some of my other posts about journaling:

Don’t forget to pin this post to return to later!

82 inspirational quotes about journaling

Esther is the founder of Through the Phases, a wellbeing and healthy lifestyle blog dedicated to sharing mind/body/soul practices for self-exploration, healing, and fulfilment. She has a degree in Psychology, is yoga teacher trained (200hr), and is currently pursuing a Neuroscience MSc to further study the mind-body connection. Read more about her story here.

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