The Ten Benefits Of A Visual Journal

Breakfast with JamieHow pictures can transform journalling—and you—into something even better.

I was explaining the benefits of Visual Thinking to author and good friend, Jamie Turner, over breakfast yesterday, when the subject of journaling with pictures came up — which, of course, is the way I do it.

As we all know, there are many benefits to keeping a personal or business journal. Pictures will add to and amplify those benefits dramatically. Here are ten reasons why keeping a visual journal works so well for me:

  1. Through pictures, I get better context about the meaningful events in my life.
  2. Pictures give life to the text, and allow me to contemplate more deeply about what I’ve written.
  3. Planning has become more concrete because I can better visualize outcomes.
  4. I feel more connected with what’s important through heightened awareness and memory (visuals engage more parts of the brain than text alone, and foster at least 6x better retention).
  5. At any point, I can quickly digest my history, flip-book style.
  6. Since I have to get images to “speak” with just a few lines and some color, I’ve become more attuned to details that matter.
  7. Drawing adds a large degree of fun to my journal, which keeps me engaged with it.
  8. Most journals are private, but I can easily share my pictures.
  9. By conjuring up visual metaphors, I’m exercising my ability to imagine and innovate.
  10. Pictures are “emotional” so it’s much easier to connect with what’s in my heart.

Regardless of whether you journal on paper, your computer or a mobile device (I use the iPad app “Paper” by 53), I highly recommend adding pictures to your mix. And, if you’re already using visuals, feel free to post some of your thoughts and add to the list.

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