Hi there lovely readers! I published an article about filling up notebooks in October 2013 and it is one of my most-read articles ever: many people seem to have many notebooks laying around! I've discovered that buying notebooks is an addictive activity: I have various really cute notebooks stacked on my desk but I simply don't know what to write in them. Here's another list of notebook-themes. Enjoy!
1. Keep track of your time
Whenever I can't sleep I lie in bed, wondering what I did with my time that day. Some days I find myself to be very happy because I've been very productive all day long, but other days don't give me that satisfying feeling because I know I wasted lots and lots of time on doing nothing. Keeping track of your time can help: writing down '1 hour of procrastinating' isn't half as satisfying as '10 minutes of work'!
2. Keep track of what you eat
I usually don't really care about my diet - I mean, I'm a vegetarian and I try not to stuff my face with crisps and sweets on a daily basis - but I've never been obsessed about it. However - sometimes keeping this 'natural balance' is a bit harder: this always happens when I don't have a rhythm in my life, on vacations for instance. I have a little notebook for days/weeks like this: I write down everything I eat (everything - including that piece of licorice I consumed oh-so-sneeky!) - doing this makes you realize how much you eat without realizing it.
3. A one-line-journal
Keeping a diary can be a lot of fun (and it will be so funny to read your sad and cheerful stories in 50 years) but it's a very time-consuming activity as well: I used to keep a diary when I was 10 or so, but I stopped doing this about two years later because I simply didn't have time for it. A simple solution for this - keep a one-line-journal! Think of something funny, beautiful, or even something sad that happened to you today and write it down in your journal. Doing this won't cost you long and you actually will have something 'of the past' to read in the future.
4. Create a bucket list
'The Bucket List' (you know, that movie where Morgan Freeman dies (beautiful movie, though)) inspired me for this idea: writing down the things you want to do before you die can be interesting. Don't wait 70 years to execute your ideas, though - if you want to go skydiving, go skydiving! If you want to write a book, start writing a book! Create a bucket list of things you want to do before you die but try to cross of as many things - having hopes & dreams is a good thing, executing them is even better.
5. Write down your expectations
You can choose your timespan yourself: it doesn't matter if you write down your expectations for next week, next year, or the next 20 years - re-reading your little list after a certain amount of time can be helpful. You can check if you've accomplished what you wanted to - if you have, you can be proud of yourself and enjoy the moment / and if you haven't, you can always work on your former goals as well.
6. A random word
Go to another room in the house, go outside, go to a restaurant - it doesn't matter where you go: just change your environment. Seek for a random object and write its name down - including every word that pops into your head while thinking of it. This might sound silly but I actually had lots of fun doing this! You can expand your little 'mind map' even further (if you're even making a mind map) - for instance, if you see a chair, write down 'wood', wood can be connected to a forest, et cetera. Doing this may inspire you and if it doesn't - hey, you've filled up another page of your notebook!
7. Make a collage
Grab some newspapers, magazines, old books - and search for passages, pages & images you like. You don't really use your notebook as a notebook in this way but who said you had to! Hehe.
8. Analyze books and movies
Watching a movie or reading a book is a relaxing activity - and the kind of numb feeling lying on the sofa under a blanket gives you might ease your brain as well, which'll result in less attentiveness. This is great if you're watching a careless and funny movie but many movies include beautiful quotes, moments worth remembering and inspiring passages and letting these go to waste is a shame. Grab a notebook, sit up straight and take notes. There's a difference between watching and seeing.
9. Just carry it around
Choosing a specific theme for every notebook you own is nice but just carrying a notebook around is a personal requirement for me, too. I often find myself sitting in class, on a train, doing absolutely nothing and that inspires me - being in a different environment excites me and listening to the people around me often gives me new ideas. I jot them down so I can use them in future blogposts - or just to have those memories.
(My sister virtually apologizes for her chipped nails)
I just wanted to add one more thing: the title of this blogpost is '9 ways to fill up your notebook' and this sounds like you have to write things down, fill the notebooks up so you can start writing in another one - this isn't what I'm trying to do in this post, I'm just trying to inspire you to write more and more diverse, as I believe writing is good for lots of things and can shape you as a person.
I hope I inspired you! Much love, Sjoukje