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Joyful Nature Journaling with Hannah Bevan 

Cornwall-based writer & founder of Journal For Joy, Hannah Bevan, shares her tips for getting started with creative nature journaling. 

27/03/24

Hannah Bevan is a writer, author and creative journaling workshop facilitator based in Falmouth, Cornwall. She founded Journal For Joy to inspire more people to make space for positive journaling and feel the wellbeing benefits it can bring.  

Here she tells us about these benefits and shares her tips for practising creative journaling to connect with nature – a theme that runs through many of her workshops.  

What is nature journaling?  

Nature journaling is about noticing and getting curious about your natural environment, and then creating something that’s inspired by it in your journal. There’s no right or wrong way to do it! You might like to write, draw, take photos or something else. 

It gives you a chance to practise mindfulness and engage your senses, find new perspectives and reflect on (and strengthen) your own personal connection to nature. And it’s accessible for everyone – all you need is a notebook and something to write with.

How can nature journaling impact our wellbeing? 

Journaling is a simple-but-powerful practice, which is why I’m so passionate about it! It can provide so many wonderful benefits for our mental and physical wellbeing including reduced stress and anxiety, improved brain function and an increased sense of optimism.  

Nature journaling has the added benefit of getting you immersed in the great outdoors, which we all know is so beneficial for our mental health too.  

What are your tips for getting started?

Choose a journal that you like the look and feel of 

You’ll be more likely to want to pick it up and use it and, hopefully, you’ll learn to associate this beautiful, tangible object with self-care.  

 

Remember there’s no right or wrong 

One of the beautiful things about journaling is that there are no rules! Everyday your entries might look different – and that’s ok. It might be filled with spelling errors – that’s ok too. Experiment, be playful and embrace the freedom that it allows.  

 

Bring focus to positive emotions 

…like gratitude, awe, hope and joy. As humans we tend to have a ‘negativity bias’ paying more attention to the bad than the good. It’s not about ignoring or disregarding difficult stuff but rather striving for a more balanced mindset, which is often just the thing we need. 

 

Try using prompts if you feel stuck when faced with a blank page  

There are lots of inspiring guided journals out there, as well as free resources online. Here are a couple of prompts to get you started: 

  • Find a peaceful place in nature to sit, close your eyes and listen. Make a list of the sounds that you noticed. 

  • Write a thank you letter to Mother Nature. 

  • Sit in the same spot outdoors for 10 minutes and quickly sketch natural details that catch your eye. See if you can fill a page in your journal. 

  • Write a short poem titled ‘The ocean and me’. See if you can let go of what you think a poem ‘should’ be and instead freely express your emotions or imagination.  

You can find out more about Hannah’s work at www.journalforjoy.co.uk or on Instagram where she shares lots of uplifting content and journaling inspiration: @journal.for.joy

 

 

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