I am not afraid to write in a new journal.

Why would I? If journaling brings fear, why would I do it? The point of journaling, at least for me, is to express myself in writing in a frictionless, fearless manner.

A journal shouldn’t be something that stresses me out. It becomes one if I treat it like something to “show off”. For some people, journaling is their art form and their journal pages are something they show to the world. This works great for them and I find many of their works inspiring.

However, this is something I prefer not to do—if I can help it. I have so much history with journaling that prevents me from taking that path. A journal, for me, has always been the safest place I can be. And during times like these, I cling to it a lot, because even if I don’t admit it to others (or to myself) often, I do am afraid right now.

I’ve said things in my journals I won’t tell anyone. Writing in them have sustained me emotionally for almost three years now since I started getting serious with them. With a daily journaling practice, I’ve become less anxious, less sad, and less afraid. Without this practice, I’ll be more afraid than I am now.

While my journals are also slowly transforming into flower beds for ideas I share in this blog (this post being an example), it will always be primarily a place of retreat. I feel calmer knowing that there is always a safe place I could run to when things get tough.