Lifes Abundance posts created by lifes abundance

Make Your Holidays Sustainable With Eco-Friendly Decor

sustainable wrapping ideas

How great would it be if you could celebrate the holidays while giving our earth the gift of sustainability? Well, that’s exactly what we want to do! We’ve come up with some eco-friendly decor ideas so you can deck the halls without the guilt (or expense) of waste. Here are some of our favorites:

Pressed Leaves

As fall comes to an end, take up the leaves from your backyard and get to pressing! Elevate this tried and true activity to make gorgeous wreaths or tie them to your wrapped gifts as a colorful accessory. There are a couple ways you can press your leaves. You can use a heavy hard book and put the leaves between the pages to flatten them or iron the leaves between wax paper, paper towels or a thin cloth.  To preserve your pressed leaves, you can coat them with eco-friendly epoxy so you can use them for holiday decor for years to come!

Dried Fruit

Another elegant eco-friendly item you can use for your gifts, wreaths, and ornaments is dried fruit! This is a colorful way to decorate your space while using what you already have in your kitchen! Some of the best fruits to use are oranges, apples, and lemons. All you have to do is slice up the fruits and be sure to dry them out as much as possible with a paper towel. Then, lay them flat, bake in the oven at 200 degrees Farenheit for 3-4 hours, and make sure to flip them until they are completely dry! And there you have it! Beautiful eco-friendly decor that smells good and looks even better.

Cranberry and Popcorn Garland

Need a new garland? Look no further! Make a new one that pops with color by using cranberries and popcorn. This is a classic to be sure, but if you’ve never tried it, it’s a wonderful homemade addition! You’ll need none other than popped popcorn and washed cranberries as well as craft string and a needle for threading. Make the popcorn a few days in advance so it gets slightly stale and is firm enough for threading. Thread your two snacks through the string in any pattern you like and then add it to your tree decor! If you really want your homemade garland to last a few more years, spray it with shellac to preserve and reuse!

sustainable decor ideas

Gingerbread Ornaments

Get the kids in on the eco-friendly decor with gingerbread ornaments! This super easy craft looks adorable on trees and gives off an inviting cinnamon scent. These gingerbread cookies are made with only three ingredients, making it the perfect homemade project. All you need is craft glue, ground cinnamon and unsweetened apple sauce. Combine these ingredients together into a dough, roll out and get to work with the cookie cutter. Don’t forget to create the hole at the top for the string to hang. Let it dry by baking, air drying, or using a food dehydrator. Then, whip out the glitter and any other gingerbread accessories for decorating! Once these have all dried, string a ribbon through and hang them up for everyone to enjoy. Even though these look good enough to eat, make sure that you keep them away from kids and pets!

Cloth Gift Wrapping

Traditional wrapping paper doesn’t have the best impact on the environment, especially considering over two million pounds of it end up in landfills by the end of the holiday season. A fantastic alternative to wrapping paper, which is reusable and looks just as festive, is wrapping cloth. Also known as furoshiki, the practice of using cloth to wrap gifts originated in Japan. You don’t need to purchase the exact kind of cloth traditionally used because you probably have something very similar lying around the house. Once you find a fabric, check out the easy tutorials online for the many unique ways to tie up your gifts.

Recycled, Personalized Greeting Cards

Need a fun holiday decor project to do with the kids? Instead of buying a bunch of greeting cards that could potentially end up in landfills, make your own! You can get recycled cards or paper and customize them using potato stamps. All you need to do is outline the desired shape on the potato and then cut around it with a knife so the design sticks out. Dip into paint and you’re all set! This keeps the same festive feel as traditional greeting cards while adding a unique touch, and serious crafty bonus points

By all means, continue to enjoy festivities and less-DIY holiday decor! Just by making small changes to your decorations like we’ve listed here, you can reduce your environmental impact while still experiencing all the warm, fuzzy feelings of the holidays.

We Source From Sustainable Fisheries

fisherman on rocks

At Life’s Abundance, our purpose is to help people and their pets live healthier and happier lives. Part of this vision includes committing to sustainability initiatives because in order to be healthy ourselves, our environment must also be healthy. That’s why we are so happy to share that when we select vendors we look beyond just the quality of their ingredients, safety protocols and facilities to see that they have a commitment to environmental sustainability, just as we do.

The fisheries that supply the whitefish meal in our dog foods and cat foods follow sustainable practices! This is particularly important because of the delicate nature of the ocean environment and the impact of overfishing on the food supply and ecology.  Our fish come from commercial fisheries on the West Coast of the United States, which are certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council. This means that they have met sustainability standards including minimizing environmental impact, a commitment to healthy fish population levels, and complying with relevant laws.

school of fish

The whitefish meal in our dog and cat foods is derived from de-boned, fresh cuttings of marine whitefish. The fish is tracked from the moment it is caught all the way through to its processing, ensuring only the highest quality ingredient goes into our pet foods. Cats and dogs love the flavor, but what they don’t know is that these strict standards mean that consistently robust nutrient levels are achieved with each batch - a wonderful source of wholesome protein complete with naturally high levels of omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants.

We appreciate being able to do business with those who not only provide exceptional ingredients, but share our values and aim to promote responsible marine resource management practices. Whether you are considering our dog foods and cat foods for the first time, or already feeding them, you can feel good knowing that you are choosing high-quality nutrition that is also considerate of the earth.

Promote Healthier Locks With Clean Hair Care

shampoo and conditioner

We get it - looking for a truly clean formulation in hair care that delivers on its promises is harder than it should be. When we couldn’t find plant-based products formulated with organic ingredients that soothed our scalps, nourished our locks, and gave us the lustrous hair we’re promised in shiny commercials, we tackled this problem head on and formulated our very own. 

Our duo of clean hair care products, shampoo and conditioner, are carefully formulated with potent botanicals and soothing ingredients for a natural experience. If you’ve tried your fair share of natural hair products, chances are you’ve faced the same disappointments as we have; hair that’s left with build-up, stripped of its natural oils, or stiff and lifeless. Free from sulfates, parabens, phthalates, silicone, dyes, synthetic fragrance and known carcinogenic preservatives like formaldehyde, our hair care is plant-powered with organics to provide deep nourishment, smoothness, strength and shine, starting from follicle to strand’s end.

Why switch to clean hair care?

Since you’ve landed here, you’re already one step closer in your journey to finding clean hair care that’s skin-safe for the rest of you, too. Each time you lather up in the shower, every chemical-laden, artificially fragranced sud inevitably washes across your entire body. When searching for hair care products, we believe it’s important to consider how they affect your body as a whole. From endocrine-disruptors to artificial dyes made from coal tar, many conventional shampoos and conditioners have led us astray from attaining healthful scalps, hair, and skin. In a sense, switching to clean, botanical hair care also means switching to safer body care that’s less likely to harm your skin or other bodily systems, without sacrificing the deep nourishment, moisture and shine your hair craves. 

Hair anatomy & function 101

The hair structure consists of 3 main elements; the shaft which is exposed above the scalp’s surface, the root, and a follicle beneath the skin’s surface which contains the root. While our hair is technically dead tissue mainly composed of the protein keratin, it contributes to how we shape our physical identity and is responsible for impressive processes like thermoregulation and UV radiation protection. An average scalp has between 100,000 and 150,000 hairs and grows about a half inch each month. With all of that hard work at play, your hair deserves clean nourishment and care. 

shampoo and conditioner on leaf

Feed your hair and scalp with plant-based nourishment

Simply put, we love plants and organic ingredients because we believe in their power to help promote the reparative process. Explore how our clean hair care system that’s formulated with carefully researched and thoughtfully chosen ingredients works to promote health and resilience from follicle to hair’s end! 

Start at the scalp

  1. Nourish the hair follicle and root to promote new growth

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    • Stimulate healthy hair growth by strengthening the root with the help of organic sage leaf extract and antioxidant-rich organic horsetail extract.

    • Organic ginseng root extract, provitamin B5 and vitamin E restore + nourish roots and follicles.
  2. Hydrate and fortify the scalp to encourage strong hair.

    Hair growth is promoted by a healthy, hydrated scalp. Hair growth stemming from a weakened scalp environment can result in cuticle damage.

    • Organic monoi and rose hips seed oils as well as provitamin B5 and vitamin E help nourish the scalp and hair follicles.
    • Organic sunflower oil that’s especially high in fatty acids like phospholipids as well as ceramides and antioxidants to help nourish and soothe both dry hair and scalp.

    • Organic, plant-based cetearyl alcohol helps restore the scalp to a balanced state.

Nurture the hair shaft

  1. Strengthen and protect hair to help prevent breakage/brittleness
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    • Marigold flower extract promotes healthy collagen production.

    • Organic glycerine for its humectant properties that allow it to absorb moisture, creating a protective coating over each strand.

    • Organic aloe vera provides a nourishing base that helps clean, strengthen and hydrate.

  2. Help protect against damage from environmental stressors
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    • Antioxidant-rich organic sunflower oil that’s especially high in fatty acids like phospholipids helps nourish, soothe, and protect dry hair.
    • Organic chamomile essential oil helps protect from environmental stressors.

  3. Hydrate for healthy looking hair and a longer hair life
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    • Hydrolyzed wheat protein enables the hair shaft to receive and retain proteins and moisture to strengthen and hydrate from the inside out.

    • Meadowfoam oil’s long-chain fatty acids coat hair to lock in moisture and add shine.

Clean hair care can be hard to come by - but we've made it easy with our nourishing shampoo and conditioner. Treat your hair right with this product duo that promotes the healthy, glossy hair you've been striving for.

Is Coat Color a Clue into Cat Personality?

woman holding two kittens

Whether you’re bringing a cat into your home for the first time, or you're a seasoned cat parent, there are some things you will want to understand about our feline friends.  Let’s explore one question you may not have considered: can coat color predict a cat's personality?

For years, researchers have tried to determine whether cat coat colors have an impact on cat personality traits. Rumors have circulated among cat parents that their orange tabby cats were notoriously friendly, compared to their gray and white counterparts who were seemingly more aggressive. In order to try to uncover whether the genes that impact cat coat color also play a role in the development of cat personality traits, researchers took a closer look.

Cat Coat Color and Personality Traits

In order to understand whether cat coat color has an impact on its personality, it's important to recognize how cats inherit their coat colors. Coat colors are determined by genetics, and largely by the sex-linked genes. These four categories often define a cat's coat color:

  • Control Spotting
  • Pigment Intensity
  • Orange and Agouti Color Switching
  • Patterns

Female cats, for example, are more likely to have certain types of coats, including tortoiseshell coloring and calico patterns. It is rare to find a male cat that will have these types of coats. So, in that sense, coat color can influence personality — but the gender of the cat also may have a significant impact on their personality as well.

Purebred cats are more likely to have defined personality traits rather than typical domestic shorthair cats that are mixed-breed. For instance, a Siamese cat is going to have a very distinct coat color and pattern. Due to its breed, it also may inherit specific personality traits, such as being more vocal or even demanding. 

There is certainly enough evidence to suggest that sometimes a cat's coat color can influence its personality, but some experts believe it has less to do with the actual color of the coat and more to do with other genetic factors.

woman kissing cat

Myths vs. Reality

In all actuality, the idea that coat color influences a cat's personality is more about human perception. Recent studies indicate that pet parents do feel that cats with specific coat colors may exhibit certain personality traits. These are a few examples of common perceptions about cats and their coat colors:

  • Gray-and-white cats are often perceived as being the most aggressive cats, regardless of their gender. A University of California study noted that these cats often exhibited the most aggressive behaviors during routine veterinary appointments.
  • Calicos are often perceived to be more irritable cats. The same study from the University of California found that cats with this type of coat did not enjoy being handled by veterinarians.
  • Many cat owners have felt that black cats are more comfortable with indoor living and plenty of people.

Obviously, perceptions are highly subjective and a person's perception of a cat and its coat color can be influenced by their own background and experiences. It seems that perception drives the impression that cat coat colors influence personality rather than genetic makeup.

Which Factors Influence Cat Personality?

So, if coat color does not determine a cat's personality, then what does? There are several important factors that will ultimately determine what type of personality traits a cat exhibits:

  • Parental Genes — Cats are likely to inherit personality traits and certain behaviors from their parents. Some studies indicate that cats inherit many of their socialization skills from their fathers. It also has been noted that cats will naturally inherit certain behaviors from their parents. For example, if a cat's mother was particularly loving and cuddly, a young kitten may also exhibit that same personality trait. On the other hand, a cat who had a father that was jumpy and skittish may also have a tendency to be the same way.
  • Socialization in Early Life — The American Association of Feline Practitioners notes that the first few weeks of a kitten's life are critical for socialization with people. A house cat should be introduced to people between three and nine weeks old so that it can become accustomed to human contact and interaction.
  • Treatment in Adulthood — A cat's personality is likely to remain relatively stable for the first few years of its life, but its treatment into adulthood can influence its behaviors over the course of time.

Regardless of your cat's coat color or its genetic history, you are going to want to give it the best possible life. One of the ways that you can do this is to feed your cat a nourishing and fulfilling diet. At Life's Abundance, we have a variety of cat foods, treats, and care products that will help your cat to thrive, no matter what color coat they have. 

What It Means To Be An Employee Owned Company

ESOP spirit week

Since 2012, Life’s Abundance has been a 100% employee-owned company. Our purpose is to empower people and their pets to live healthier and happier lives. From the beginning, we have always put people first, and this includes our employees! We believe our team members have a lot to give, so they should benefit from all their hard work and share in our growth and success.

What is ESOP?

Employee Stock Ownership Plan, or ESOP, is a special type of employee benefit plan that allows workers to have shares within the company. How amazing is that? This means employees are stakeholders in the truest sense. That means everyone - from each warehouse team member to customer service to our executives- owns a portion of the company.

The decision to make Life’s Abundance a 100% employee-owned company originated from a discussion regarding exit strategies as the ownerships looked to retirement. Lester and the leadership team made preserving the mission and purpose of the company a priority, which could be hard to maintain during ownership changes. So, Lester proposed an ESOP which everyone, including the company owners, could see would protect the company culture, mission, and team members. It was an all-around great decision that was approved wholeheartedly.

How does it benefit consumers?

When employee owners have a stake in the company, you can feel it! Just call our Customer Care team or speak to anyone within the company, and you’ll realize you aren’t just speaking to just another employee. You’re speaking to an owner! It’s simple - owners make better employees. This ensures that you are receiving top-notch customer service all around from people who really care about serving you in the best way possible. As employee owners, we aim to lead with purpose and grow at a controlled pace. This allows us to put our full heart and attention into new projects that will ultimately make your experience with us unforgettable.

How does it benefit employees?

ESOP benefits all parties involved. Financially, we are better prepared for our future as ESOP is a retirement plan. Since we are vested owners, we are empowered to work more creatively. We find ways to better our performance and grow within the company. In turn, with our hard work and amazing results, the company’s performance improves and increases the value of the stock. It’s a win-win!

spirit week

Employee ownership is fun!

Employee Ownership Month is celebrated every October, and we were able to have a super exciting ESOP Spirit Week, virtually of course. Each day, we did an activity that was either educational or just plain fun. Here’s a recap of how we celebrate being employee owned:

On Monday, we embraced our employee ownership by taking a photo of ourselves with a sign saying “I’m an employee owner.” Some departments went all out with their signs for added team spirit!

Tuesday, we were placed into random teams for a crossword puzzle competition that tests our knowledge on ESOP. The first team that completed the puzzle and sent it back to Human Resources received a sweet prize.

Wednesday was pajama day! As an employee-owned company, you can both see AND feel the difference in our team. We’re a tight knit group and loved showing up to our company-wide morning meeting dressed from head to toe in our comfiest pajamas, slippers and all.

As employee owners, everyone in the company has different roles and responsibilities, but we all work together in creating something great! That’s why Thursday was named crayon box day and each department was given a color to rock for the day. Even our CEO wore a tie-dye shirt since he brings each and every department together.

On Friday, we stopped by the virtual lunchroom and put our knowledge to the test. We played an ESOP trivia game with, once again, prizes for the winning team!

Employee ownership is fun, profitable and empowering for everyone we touch. It makes a big difference in the way we show up for each other and customers every single day. For Life’s Abundance, all of this energy and passion stems from the purpose we all share - to empower people and pets to live happier, healthier lives. From all of the employee-owners, thank you for your business.

Five Healthy Habits That Can Extend Your Life

young woman cutting vegetables

People have spent centuries looking for the Fountain of Youth, hoping to stay young and prolong their lives. We now know that the real gold is in aging as well as we can by embracing a reasonably healthy lifestyle.  We’re here to share the great news that there are some healthy habits you can adopt to help you live longer and better! A recent study conducted by researchers out of Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that your lifestyle choices do indeed make all the difference.

The Harvard Study

This 2018 study looked at existing information on thousands of men and women to see if there were patterns that might tell them why some people live longer than others.

They found that a healthy lifestyle played an essential role in how long people lived. According to the study, certain lifestyle factors can reduce the risk of death associated with cardiovascular disease and cancer. The earlier you start, the better, but adhering to these five standards by age 50 could add 14 years to your life.

Five Healthy Habits That Can Extend Your Life

 

1. Refrain From Smoking

This comes as a surprise to no one. But it’s important to reinforce avoiding the use of tobacco products as this is the most influential factor in living longer. Although the number of people still lighting up continues to drop, cigarettes are not completely out of style. Just one cigarette a day can result in cancer and heart disease later on in life. Also, younger people, especially teens, have taken up vaping and e-cigarettes.  Studies are still emerging on this hot group of products, but fundamentally it is just another way to introduce chemicals from tobacco into their bodies. Lung disease and early death are a risk from use of any form of tobacco.

The numbers might surprise you, but about 12 percent of women and 16 percent of men are still habitual smoking. And an alarming 3.6 million high school students admit to using e-cigarettes for vaping. Estimates are that smoking is responsible for more than 480,000 deaths each year.

senior family yoga

2. Remain Physically Active

If you’re reading this while sitting, let this be the little voice that reminds you to get up and move. A sedentary lifestyle is a contributing factor to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. It also increases your risk of colon cancer, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, lipid disorders, and mental illness.

Most people know by now that exercise should be part of their daily lives, but how important is it? The study found that the people living the longest did at least 3.5 hours a week, about 30 minutes daily, of moderate to vigorous activity. You can reach this goal by going swimming, dancing, or our favorite - taking a brisk walk with your furry friend.

3. Limit Yourself to Moderate Alcohol Intake

There has been some toss-up on the effect of alcohol on your life. Some studies say that drinking helps you live longer while others say it contributes to chronic illnesses that take years from your life. This study in particular shows that you can still drink, but there is a limit you should try to follow. The U.S Department of Health Dietary Guidelines lists moderate alcohol intake as one drink per day for women and two for men.

4. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Generally, body mass index (BMI) is the tool that measures healthy weight and excess body fat. The study lists a healthy BMI as 18.5 to 24.9, so you’ll want to be within this range. You can calculate your BMI manually, but the math is a bit tricky. Talk to your doctor about calculating your BMI, or use one of the free tools online.

5. Eat a High-Quality Diet

We all know nutrition is a big part of a healthy lifestyle, but it can be confusing to know exactly what you should include in your diet. The study used a tool called the Alternative Healthy Eating Index (AHEI) to determine what a high-quality diet looks like. The AHEI allows you to develop a score based on the number of daily servings you eat certain foods such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. The goal is to follow a diet that is rich in foods that can help prevent chronic illnesses. The study suggests a score of 40% or higher as the standard for a high quality diet.

Along with following these guidelines, you can enhance your food choices and maintain a balanced diet by using high-quality supplements. One takeaway from this study is that even if we know the steps to take toward healthier living, we need support and reminders.  From probiotics to multivitamins and more, Life’s Abundance nutritional supplements provide key elements necessary for good health.

If you’re questing for the Fountain of Health, start by applying these healthy habits and you can potentially add more than a decade to your life.

Bewitching Chia Pudding Recipe

easy pudding recipe



With the year’s biggest candy extravaganza right around the corner, what’s better than a sweet, healthy, no-bake recipe? No tricks here! Just a delicious, berry pudding using our Greens Blend and a handful of granola for that perfect crunch.

Follow this simple recipe when you need to satisfy that wicked craving:

Recipe:

Makes 2 servings

Instructions:

  1. Mix yogurt, chia seeds, and Greens Blend together in a bowl and cover.
  2. Place in the refrigerator for four hours.
  3. Remove the pudding mixture from the fridge.
  4. In two glasses, layer the chia pudding, blueberries, and granola.
  5. Serve immediately and enjoy!

chia pudding recipe

Tip: If you are preparing ahead of time, wait to top your dessert with the granola so you maintain maximum crunchiness!

The Benefits of Green Lipped Mussels for Pets

dog chasing a ball

People often wonder why we choose the ingredients we do for our products, particularly when our selections appear unconventional. Green Lipped Mussels are no exception to this curiosity, so you may be surprised to learn that it is one of the best natural supplements that promote pet agility and support joint health.

If you are ready to take a deeper dive into this superfood and how it can benefit your dog or cat, you’re in the right place!

A Sustainable Supplement

Green lipped mussels, also known as Perna canaliculus, are a shellfish that also happen to be an extremely beneficial superfood. Originating off the coast of New Zealand, these pure and clean waters are free from pollution. Impressively, it is internationally recognized as one of the top eco-friendly seafoods in the world. This means that the green lipped mussel is a nutrient dense, ocean-friendly seafood. They are popular in New Zealand and have only recently been introduced in the West. They are commonly used medicinally as they contain vitamins, minerals, omega-3 fats, and more that are essential to a healthy diet.

A Beneficial Ingredient

Green lipped mussels have numerous benefits for your dog and cat that can help them overcome their joint issues. Some people may turn to NSAIDs, like Rimadyl, for a quick fix but this can result in some negative side effects that you don’t want for your companion, such as vomiting and diarrhea. As an alternative, mussels are a natural supplement that are much healthier and do not have any known negative side effects. It works to promote pet agility and joint health, even for those that already have painful joints. They help keep the cartilage strong, healthy, and flexible so the joints are properly cushioned as they glide. As an extra advantage, these mussels have also been known to boost immunity and skin health!

Pet parents usually have a general idea of the importance of the fatty acids, EPA and DHA, but did you know that mussels contain a third called Eicosatetraenoic Acid, or ETA. ETA is that one ingredient that does more by lowering the production of cyclooxygenase, an enzyme that is responsible for inflammation. So, receiving ETA in their supplements can mean more playtime!

cat playing with toy

All of this is why we’ve been sure to include this amazingly beneficial ingredient in our Agility Formula for Dogs & Cats as well as our Pork & Duck Cat Food. When it comes to Agility Formula, which is designed to support the entire musculoskeletal system, the mussels pack an extra healthful punch because they work well with the glucosamine in our formula. It can be hard to watch your dog or cat struggle to climb stairs or play the way they used to. With the right diet and targeted supplementation, you will know, and see with your own eyes, that you are helping them live a healthier and happier life.

Frozen Berry Bites Recipe

frozen berry bites

This delicious and healthy, no-bake treat is so easy to make at home with the kids! These frozen berry bites are not only tasty, but they are also packed with nutrition. The Greens Blend used in this recipe helps you and your family get the recommended 5-9 servings of fruits and veggies daily!

Follow these simple directions below to create a fun, quick snack for when you’re on the go:

Recipe:

Makes 12 servings

  • 3 cups coconut yogurt
  • ¼ cup Life’s Abundance Greens Blend
  • 1 cup granola of your choice
  • 1 cup blueberries

Instructions:

  1. Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners
  2. In a medium bowl, combine yogurt and Greens Blend and whisk until fully combined.
  3. Spoon yogurt mixture equally into muffin pan
  4. Top with granola and blueberries
  5. Freeze overnight
  6. Enjoy!

 

Journaling For Your Self-Improvement

woman writing in journal

There’s never a better time than now to evaluate your habits and goals plus make changes that will benefit you. Some people might reflect on their daily routine and decide they want to start a fitness plan, focus on their diet more, or learn a new skill. It’s also just as important to pay special attention to your mental and emotional health while truly investing time in YOU!

This year has brought many difficulties as well as a “new normal” that we are all trying to get accustomed to. While physical distancing is necessary during these times, it is not optimal for mental and emotional well-being. It is natural for people to want social interaction and the lack of time spent in person has led to a great deal of anxiety and stress for many. There are multiple ways to work on your mental and emotional health, but journaling is an effective way to track your day-to-day moods. This is an age-old activity that allows you to reason through daily situations as well as make sense of both positive and negative thoughts.

Types of Journaling

Journaling can take many different forms. Many of us may have had a diary when we were younger, and though the fact that Kristi had a crush on Chad isn’t of great consequence, that was a form of journaling. You may have had to keep a journal in your English class when you were in school or maybe your healthcare provider asked you to keep a nutritional journal or one for any type of therapy.

The great thing about keeping a journal is that there are no real rules. Your journal can be about any topic that helps you or about anything that you're interested in. Some people keep journals full of poetry or little blurbs about daily events in their life. It can be a way to write out all your thoughts on paper. Journals can be strictly private for your eyes only, or they can be shared with others. Blogs, for example, are sometimes considered online journals. These are the blogs that are often personal in nature.

What Journal Method Is Right for You?

This is a personal decision. Some people are comfortable sharing their journal and they get a great deal from the feedback they receive from readers. In other cases, it might be easier to be fully honest if you know that no one else will read your thoughts. A mental health journal should help you gain clarity and it needs to be honest.

Your journal should be a way to guide you with self-improvement. This is going to be specific to your own needs. You might find that it's a good place to help you prioritize the things that you need to do in your life. Or, maybe it's a good space to write about the things you're afraid of or the relationships you're having trouble with. Again, there's no right or wrong answer here. You'll find that the act of writing these things down can offer a great benefit both in the present moment and long term.

Writing in a journal can be like a form of meditation. You have the ability to clear your mind and verbalize all of the thoughts in your head on the page. You can also look back at your writing later, with a clearer mind, and really analyze the thoughts in a more unbiased way. This can help you decipher and analyze things in a way that is exceptionally difficult to do in the moment.

How Do You Begin Journaling?

While journaling is unique to you, there are some basic rules you can follow to stay on track.

  • Choose the method that's most convenient. If you prefer typing or keying information, you might open a blank document to become your journal. You can also create a blog that's private or public.

  • Add your own creativity to the process. Journaling doesn't need to only be words, unless you prefer to use prose exclusively. You can add any form of creativity that you want to make it yours. This might include adding photos, drawings or paintings, and decorations of any type. This works for an online journal as well as a physical book.

  • Develop a routine. Journaling reaps the most benefits when it becomes a habit. You can set aside time each day to work on your journal or you might simply keep your journal handy to add bits as the mood strikes.

writing in journal


Your journal may change over time as your needs and goals change. It’s not a static process. Your goals now might focus on your health while in a year you may start to work towards a new hobby. Journaling can become a self-improvement tool that you can turn to at any point in your journey through life. So, grab your journal and start making strides towards the best version of yourself!