“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
Keeping a journal is a great way to write down and have physical copies of your thoughts, memories, travels, inspirations and more. A journal can be a simple lined notebook, or it can be a handcrafted, leather bound notebook.
There are also many different ways to keep a journal. A travel journal is beneficial to store and track all your memories from your travels, like when you're traveling the rodeo circuit. Staying organized and on track can be easy with a solid bullet journal and even a daily inspirational journal could help you.
Let’s address these big three categories:
1. Travel Journal
Traveling and visiting new places can be a visual overload and a lot of experiences to remember. Writing down all of these experiences can help you remember them and gives you an opportunity to express how you felt in words. Giving your experiences and memories event more life, especially when you go back and re-read your entries.
The process of journaling during travel is really up to you. It’s most important to date the entry, but otherwise, just start writing. Making sure to write down all your emotions and feelings including what you see visually.
When you’re traveling the rodeo circuit, or even just visiting a new place, it can seem like it’s impossible to take the time to journal. But there is no time like the present, so try to take a little time each day to recount your experiences. Write down what you saw at a rodeo, how air smelled or even the times of your competitors. A fresh memory will provide the most raw emotion making the entry even more memorable. While you’re traveling to the next rodeo or town or at the end of day, are great times to jot down the day’s events.
Maybe you don’t have time to sit down and write. Instead, paste pictures in the journal or sketch what you are seeing and experiencing. You can even add small souvenirs like stamps and postcards, or even your rodeo number tag!
It’s important to find time to journal while you’re traveling. After all, the journal can help you remember all that you did and maybe even spark new memories. It’s almost like your own method of time travel.
“Take only memories, leave only footprints.” - Chief Seattle
Traveling from place to place can be wearing on you and your journal. You’ll want to have a sturdy journal that can withstand being tossed into a bag, constantly opened and closed and exposed to different weather conditions. So get a leather covered journal!
2. Bullet Journal
Another form of journal writing is using a bullet journal. Bullet journals can help you stay organized, keep track of your daily activities and give you a space to write down your thoughts and ideas. They can also be a great tool to keep track of your rodeo times and a calendar of the rodeos themselves. Or use to keep track of your tack inventory and animal feeding schedule. It’s up to you!
Bullet journals are usually categorized by the month. To start, pick a theme for the month, find a good quote to live by that month and make a cover page for it. This page will be mostly empty so feel free to do as you please on it.
Now you can start to build your monthly calendar. Write out the days of the month, leaving room for a sidebar to add goals, thoughts, notes and ideas. This will allow you to mark the events on the calendar and write down your goals and to-dos next to it. Allowing you to mark off things as you accomplish them.
Also, provide space for rapid logging. This will allow you to quickly write down thoughts, to-dos and more. It’s a quick way to get down in words what you need to accomplish or remember.
If you want to get into more detail, you can even create trackers, like fitness trackers or mood trackers, and weekly spreads. Create a tracker for your rodeo times. This will give you a more granular view of your goals and plans.
“Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.” ~ David Allen
While how you set up your bullet journal is ultimately up to you, it is best to keep it as organized as possible. That way you can go back and reference what you might have already accomplished. Or just to see what your thoughts were that day. Also, it’s beneficial to have a sturdy journal that can withstand the times.
Now go have a productive month!
3. Daily Inspirational Journal
Maybe you don’t travel that much and you are already organized, so what do you need a journal for? Daily inspiration, of course!
Daily inspirations can be quotes you read, something you heard in a podcast that day, a bible verse you read or even something you saw someone do. Writing down these inspirations allows you to inspire yourself and maybe give yourself motivation.
How to keep the journal is totally up to you. It can be short quotes that are dated, or it can be long entries that express your feelings and emotions that day. Maybe you had a rough day in the arena, find an inspirational quote, write it down and revisit it the next day to give yourself inspiration..
After all, who doesn’t need a little inspiration and motivation each day! Sometimes all we need is a little pick me up. And there is no better way to keep track of this than to write it down in a journal.
It seems like journaling is more of a chore than fun. Having to write in it everyday and keep it safe, maybe from peeking eyes! It can be daunting.
However, you will thank yourself for writing down all of these memories and inspirations. It will give you a look into your past and could give you insight to your future. It gives you an opportunity to see the goals you made and if you reached them. Maybe you had a goal to participate in 10 rodeos during the year, but how will you remember if you achieved it if you didn’t write it down and keep track of the rodeos you went to. The entries will be memories you will forever cherish.
Just be sure to get you a good journal, one that will last years to come!