Valuable addition: Why you should use journaling as a yoga teacher

Journaling is all the rage. The many variations of therapeutic writing are suitable for almost any situation in life. Numerous journals that you only have to fill out are now on the market to help you get started.

Journaling has also arrived in yoga classes. By means of specific reflection questions, the effect of the individual asanas can be additionally deepened, whereby the students profit even more from the practice.

As a teacher, you should definitely consider making journaling a regular part of your own routine, and not just offer it in your classes. Why? Here are my top 3 reasons why you should use journaling as a yoga teacher.

Personal growth as a teacher through journaling

Of course, in addition to teaching, you shouldn’t neglect your own practice. By documenting it-whether you’re practicing on your own or taking a class-and noting what felt good and what didn’t, you’ll get a better sense of what might be good for your group, which asanas are appropriate for which subject, and more. But you shouldn’t just write about your yoga practice, you should also engage with yourself through journaling.

With regular journaling you get to know yourself better: As a person and as a teacher. You learn who you are, what your values are, what you want to stand for, what you are comfortable with and what you are not. The better you are in touch with yourself, the more authentic you can be in the classroom.

Refined cuing

As you get into the habit of keeping track of your own practice, you will notice that your announcements become more accurate over time. Why? You are much more intensely aware of how individual exercises feel and what they can trigger on a mental level; what parts of the body are involved, where attention should be directed. If you incorporate this knowledge into your announcements, they will become much more understandable and vivid for your participants.

More creative lessons

Have you ever wondered where to get fresh ideas for new lessons? One way is to keep an “inspiration journal”. In it, you record everything that could be inspiring for your classes: creative sequences and transitions that you picked up as a participant; asanas that you didn’t know yet; announcements that were particularly on point; but not only things from yoga class, but also from everyday life. Quotes, experiences, and interesting conversations might give you topics for new lessons.

No matter what strikes your fancy or how banal it may seem to you – write it down! Feel free to add comments to the entry about why you think you could use this point in your teaching.

So, both personally and professionally, you can benefit greatly from journaling. Just grab a blank notebook and pen and get started right away!

Have fun writing, teaching, and growing!

Writing as Healing – Journaling for Grief

Grief is a powerful emotion. So powerful, in fact, that you might be inclined to think that writing is nothing more than a drop in the bucket. But in fact, it can greatly help to break through the lethargy often associated with grief, and reach for pen and paper.

Nowadays, there are numerous studies that prove that writing about traumatic events can have a positive influence on the healing process. And the loss of a loved one is definitely a traumatic event.

The grieving process

After a loss, you are forced to learn to cope with a new situation – one that you initially reject rigorously. You do not want this new reality, reject it, resist it. With time, however, acceptance comes. Gradually, you get used to the new circumstances, learn to live with the grief, and thus, step by step, come to terms with the loss.

The role of writing in this process

How can writing support this process?

Writing provides a good method for reflection. It’s a way to explore the feelings that come with grief. Do you feel more paralyzed? Sad? Angry? Do you feel regret about something? Once you engage more deeply with your emotions, exploring and questioning them, you can gain valuable insights. These, in turn, support the grieving and coping process.

You can confide everything to paper. There may be things you don’t want to tell others for fear of being judged or that they might tell others. You don’t have to worry about that in journaling. Here, you can be completely open with your feelings, without shame or fear.

Alone or with others

Journaling for grief is first of all a method for you alone. However, it is also increasingly used in grief groups. Here, participants are given the opportunity to share what they have written with others. In this way, it can happen that other people report similar feelings and experiences. When this happens, there is a sense of connection: you are not alone in what you are going through! For many, this realization is liberating and brings them a good deal further on their path.

You always decide for yourself whether you want to write for yourself alone or share your inner life with others. If you feel the desire to do the latter but don’t want to join a grief or therapy group, you can ask friends or family members if they would be willing to talk about it with you.

Methods for journaling when grieving

Of course, you can just go ahead and write everything off your chest without any concept. That’s one of the appeals of writing – that it can be so simple!

For those who don’t know how to get started without a concrete starting point, here are a few tips.

Letter to the deceased person

Write a letter to the person you lost. Feel free to write more than one! Share with the person everything you feel or write things from your heart that you were no longer able to share with this person. If you think that this method could be something for you, then read this article – there you will learn more about it.

The word “loss”

Take a closer look at the word “loss” and what it means to you. Forget about common definitions from the dictionary, but write only about what the word means to you personally. What external circumstances do you associate with “loss”, what feelings go along with it? To what extent does this idea fit to what you are actually feeling right now?

The ups and downs

In this journaling method, describe how you experience the different phases of the day. When do you find grief particularly hard – more in the morning or in the evening? When do you feel a little better? What activities are good for you? Document your ups and downs in your journal. Healing is by no means a linear process! Just because you were doing well once doesn’t mean it’s all uphill from here on out. But you may be able to identify in what circumstances, at what times, and in what company the bad times feel a little easier.

Significant Lessons

Did you learn something from the person who died? If so, what? Write about it. You may have learned things that are still useful to you today, that may have changed your life for the better. Cherish those lessons and the memory of them. In this way, you are reminding yourself that something of the person who died has stayed behind and is still with you.

A new life

The world continues to turn as before, everything goes on as usual – only in your case life has turned upside down. This can feel confusing, uncomfortable and uncertain. Often, mental chaos is the result. Describe to your journal what your life without this person is like, getting as detailed as you feel comfortable. You’ll be able to organize your thoughts a little better this way, and you may even find that some things haven’t changed at all – that can be sad, but also comforting.

Have you had any experience with journaling for grief? What has helped you? Share it with me and anyone else who might benefit!

Not just pen and paper: Three beautiful journaling options for creatives

Painting, crafting, creating – are you one of those people who are bubbling over with creativity and love to create things with their hands? Maybe that’s why you find it rather boring to just buy a notebook and write away for your journaling routine?

If so, here are a few ideas for you on how to harness the healing power of journaling while living your creative streak to the fullest!

For crafting enthusiasts: Scrapbook or Bullet Journal

Create your journal just the way you like it! Get a blank notebook and get started – it’s a blank canvas just waiting to be filled with life.

For a bullet journal, you usually create your own “template,” a pattern that you can follow and fill in day by day. Here you decide which fields you want to implement. Date and day of the week should not be missing, but for everything else there are no limits to your imagination. You can always change this template. However, I recommend to use the same template for at least one week to develop some continuity. If you don’t like it anymore, you can simply create a new one.

With scrapbooks, you don’t just write and paint, you also collect, cut, and glue. Here you document the important things, insights and events of your life in the form of photos, tickets, ride tickets, grains of sand and anything else you can think of. Arm yourself with scissors, glue and some nice pens and get started!

For movie buffs: a video journal

Cineastes who are rather fond of pen and paper can use their camera as a journal. How? That’s entirely up to you! Maybe you just want to record yourself entrusting your camera with all the things you would otherwise entrust to a journal. Or maybe you’d like to take a more artistic approach and make little reports of your life, cut together from individual impressions of your everyday life.

For the talkative: an audio journal

Writing isn’t your thing, but you’re good at organizing yourself when you talk? Then an audio journal might be just the thing for you. Choose a way to record yourself talking about whatever’s on your mind, as if you were telling a loved one or recording a podcast.

Important with all three formats: Also pay attention to whether you’re more visual or auditory. In fact, with all journaling methods, it’s important to go back over the material you’ve written so far every once in a while so that you can recognize any patterns. So if you easily forget things that are auditory, then audio journaling may not be for you. But if you’re also an audiobook fan, for example, then it could be ideal for you.

To be able to recognize said patterns, continuity is also important. So choose a variation that you enjoy so much that you have no problem staying with it.

Which creative type are you? Share it in the comments!

Make your dreams come true: Journaling for manifestation

What are you dreaming about? Do you wish for a new job, your soulmate, more financial stability, your dream house?

For life’s little and big longings, manifesting is all the rage. The idea behind it is that everything is energy and like attracts like. In plain language, this means that if you yourself vibrate at a high, i.e. positive, frequency, you will in turn also attract things that in turn vibrate at a high frequency. This can also explain “self-fulfilling prophecies”, where you think to yourself “this won’t work anyway” – and then it actually doesn’t work.

Manifestation is an incredibly broad field with a wide variety of steps, methods and tips. Journaling can play a valuable role in the process of manifesting your dreams.

Here are the top 3 journaling methods for manifesting.

Gratitude Journal

Gratitude is one of the highest frequencies you can vibrate at. By practicing gratitude, you train yourself to focus on the positive things in life. Regularly reminding yourself of how much you are blessed with automatically triggers a sense of well-being – and that is essential to manifesting. A gratitude journal supports this beautiful practice.

Every morning and every evening, write down three to five things you are grateful for. Try to always find something new, because there is so much to be grateful for! If you are going through a difficult time, it can feel hard to be grateful. Therefore, direct your focus to the things that are not only related to you. You can be grateful not only for an understanding boss or a loving partner, but also for a beautiful sunset, melodic birdsong, or the smell of a freshly mowed lawn. Sharpen your eye for the beautiful!

Positivity Diary

Just like the gratitude diary, the positivity diary is intended to sharpen your eye for the beautiful. The method: complain less!

Our brain is predisposed to register negative stimuli in order to keep us safe. Unfortunately, this also results in us perceiving negative aspects of our lives to be greater than they are – even though they are not necessarily threatening. As a result, we often first tell people about what has been bugging us when we meet up with loved ones for dinner in the evening.

However, to achieve the positive frequency that is important for manifesting, nagging tends to be counterproductive. Take a little time each evening to write down all the things that were nice that day; things that went well; great experiences and the like.

Manifestation Diary

This method is wonderful if you already know exactly what you want to manifest – this is not yet necessary with the previous two journaling formats. You can also use them if you want to raise your vibration in general. With the manifestation diary it becomes more concrete.

Here you use the manifestation method, in which you put yourself in the mood as if you had already achieved what you want. So think about what you want to achieve and why. How would you feel if you had it? What would change? What would your everyday life look like? Imagine it in all its details and write it down. Formulate diary entries as if you were already in the situation you are dreaming about. For example: “Since I got my dream job, it is much easier for me to get up in the morning because I am already looking forward to the day ahead. I enjoy doing the tasks that are waiting for me. My job feels meaningful and fulfilling to me.”

What is the wish YOU would like to manifest? Share it in the comments!

Selfcare – a necessity, not a luxury

What’s your relationship with selfcare? Do you find it easy to be kind to yourself or do you feel selfish whenever you carve out some me-time? Right now, the world is facing pretty dark times: the pandemic, climate change and, most recently, the war in Ukraine. Even though you may not directly be affected – you haven’t lost a dear person to Covid, climate change might seem far away, and the war is in a different country – it’s possible that there’s a lot on your mind. You might feel tired of the pandemic restrictions and unsure about what to do about the other things that are going on in the world, leaving you feeling helpless. That’s natural! Even unconsciously, you might be worried or scared about the current situation. This is why taking care of yourself is so essential.

You might have heard it before: You can’t pour from an empty cup.

Do you feel guilty for taking care of yourself while other people are suffering? I get that. I’ve had that feeling too, trust me! It felt so mundane to stick to my morning routine, my skincare rituals and stuff like that. But the truth is: Nobody who has just lost their home, or a beloved person will feel better just because you skipped the things that make you feel better. You don’t help anyone by neglecting yourself. You help by donating, by demonstrating, by volunteering. And guess what? You won’t have energy or motivation for any of these things if you don’t pay attention to your own wellbeing. So, this is a plea for selfcare and a little directory about how to do it.

General selfcare advice for difficult times

You are what you consume

That’s not only true for the food you eat. While it is important that you pay attention to what you eat, it is just as important to take a look at your media intake. Limit your media consumption to fixed timeframes throughout the day, and only watch or read news from trustworthy sources. Try not to spend too much time in the comment section on social media.

Acknowledge your feelings

No matter if you’re feeling scared, anxious, nervous, sad, confused – don’t suppress it. Allow yourself to feel the way you’re feeling and talk about it if it helps you.

Do what you can

If you feel like you want to help, inform yourself about what you could do right now, where you are, with what you have. Don’t think that you have to do huge things – every little step counts.

Find balance with yoga, Ayurveda and journaling


Practice grounding slow flows and balancing positions. Make sure to include meditation in your practice and listen to your body even more than you usually do. Pay attention to how the poses make you feel, physically and mentally. Practice the Nadi Shodhana breathing technique to calm anxiety.


Eat warm, nourishing comfort food like soups and stews. Take a walk in nature – ideally barefoot. Green is a healing color. Diffuse calming essential oils like lavender. The effect of scents on our nervous system shouldn’t be underestimated!


Use therapeutic writing to make sense of the mess in your head. Here are some journal prompts that you could use:
How am I feeling right now? Can I even identify the feeling?
How does it feel in my body?
What would make me feel better right now?

Give yourself permission to treat yourself like someone you love. Practicing selfcare doesn’t mean ignoring what’s going on. It means making sure that you’re in good condition to get through the crisis and being able to help.

Unsent Letters Part 3: Letters to a living person

Okay, you guys, we are at the end of our little article series about unsent letters in therapeutic writing, and this one is a little tricky. In our mini-series, we have covered letters to a younger version of yourself and to people who have passed away. In this last part of the series, I want to talk about writing letters to people who are alive and well. So why is this tricky? First, let’s discuss why this writing technique is worth a try. Why should you write letters to living persons without sending them, and how can it help you?

There are people in our lives that intimidate us. A boss, a crush, a dominant mother… even if you are a person who doesn’t usually find it difficult to stand up for yourself, you might feel more reserved around certain people. When we have relationships – with family members, work colleagues, a partner, or friends – where we feel like we need to hold back what we are really thinking, that will result in frustration and resentment sooner or later. However, if you really cannot speak openly or you think you cannot, spilling it all on paper could lift some weight off your shoulders.

Here are some situations where you might consider writing a letter without sending it as a form of therapeutic writing:

  • You have a rude boss that terrorizes you, but you fear you might get even more problems at work if you spoke up
  • A family member or your partner annoys you, but you don’t want to poison the atmosphere at home
  • You feel like there are still some things left unsaid between you and a person you have lost touch with
  • You miss someone
  • Your feelings for someone have grown deeper and you don’t dare to tell them (yet)

The perks

  • You get to be brutally honest, because no one is going to read it
  • You avoid conflict
  • You will be calmer, because you got everything off your chest

Just imagine: Next time your boss is being rude, you can stay calm, knowing that you can vent to your journal later. When you try to talk someone but you are always interrupted, you can get it all out later on.

Here is the tricky part

In part 1 of this series, we have covered unsent letters to a younger version of yourself – the letter is meant for your own eyes.
In part 2, we have talked about unsent letters to someone who has passed away – the person this letter is meant for will not have the chance to read it.
This part is about unsent letters to a person who is alive. Someone other than yourself. When you decide to use this technique of therapeutic writing and pour everything onto paper, without holding back, you might feel so relieved and empowered that you find yourself thinking “This was awesome, but now I want the person to actually read it!”. Pause before you send that letter! Oftentimes, it might be good to let the other person know how you really feel, in other cases, though, it can be counterproductive. Sleep over it, and when you still feel like you want to send the letter, it could be a good idea to follow your intuition. Read it again, though, and see if you might want to take the edge off a little bit – you don’t want to burn any bridges.

Use this method of therapeutic writing whenever you feel like it. Of course, you can take plenty of time for it, make yourself comfortable, but when you’ve just left the office fuming or just slammed the door shut behind your partner after you two had a fight, you can also get started right away. This method has the huge advantage that you can really let off steam, without having to fear that you might hurt your counterpart. Just let it all out – the pain, the rage, the grief, whatever it is that you’re feeling. Don’t pay attention to your style, your wording or your handwriting, because nobody will read what you’re writing. Try not to put the pen down until you’re finished. You’re having a hard time getting started? Then use the following journal prompts!

7 Journal Prompts to inspire your letter

  • Once you’ve picked a person to write to: Why did you pick this specific person?
  • How do you feel about this person?
  • How do you act when you are around this person?
  • Do you feel like you can talk openly to this person? Why? Why not?
  • What would you like to tell this person? Why?
  • What might be different if this person knew what you are thinking or how you are feeling about them?
  • In what way would your relationship change?

We’re at the end of the “Unsent Letters” mini series! Read the previous parts here, if you haven’t already.

Have you tried one of the methods? Let me know!

Unsent Letters Part 2: Letters to someone who’s passed away

When we are grieving, therapeutic writing can be a wonderful tool to handle the mental stress – just like in other crises. While people we confide in might say “you need to move on, it’s been a while already”, paper is patient. It won’t set you a deadline and won’t complain when you repeat yourself. It won’t interrupt you or try to convince you that other (own?) losses are much worse. It doesn’t act awkward when you completely lose your composure due to grief. I’ll admit, it also won’t wrap you in a comforting hug. But when you just feel like getting rid of some of the weight that’s so heavy on your heart, it is a great idea to grab a pen and paper. Therapeutic writing when grieving can be a relief.

There is a beautiful quote that says, “Grief is just love with nowhere to go”. When a beloved person passes away, we might remain clue- and restless, not knowing what to do. Often, you will catch yourself thinking that you would like to tell stuff to the deceased person, discuss situations with them or ask for their advice.

Sometimes, though, we quarrel with the death of a person because we think there are still things left unsaid. This feeling can turn into regret very quickly, and that’s when it gets really uncomfortable.

It gets even more uncomfortable – almost unbearable – when there is regret attached to the death right from the beginning, for example: Should I have cared or done more? Have I really made the most out of the last time together? Did he or she feel abandoned by me? Thoughts like that can get very heavy. Give a little of that weight to your journal!

Why write a letter?

Of course, you can use therapeutic writing in many different ways when you are grieving, but writing a letter to the person who has passed away is a very profound method:

  • You can approach the deceased person “directly”
  • That way, you feel like you’re not only writing for yourself
  • You can say things that you kept to yourself until that point
  • You can ask for forgiveness

Your own attitude towards death also plays a role, of course. What do you believe in? Heaven and hell? Reincarnation? Something entirely different? Your beliefs determine whether you believe that what you write will reach the recipient in some way. But even if you don’t believe this, journaling when grieving will still offer relief.

Until now, we’ve only discussed the case of a beloved person passing away. But what happens when we lose someone who has had a negative impact on us? Chances are, there are a lot of things left unsaid. Maybe you never really dared to speak up in front of that person? Maybe you want to really break away from that person for good? Draw a line, feel liberated? Writing a letter can also help in this case and might leave you feeling lightened up, even when you know that the person will never read the letter.

How to do it

Use this method of therapeutic writing whenever you miss a beloved person who’s no longer with us; or when you feel that you still haven’t shaken off the negative impact that someone who has passed away has had on you. Try to be alone with that specific person when you sit down to write. Maybe you would like to put up a picture of them while you write or remember them in another way. Start the letter like you would when they were still alive. Then, tell them what you would like to tell, explain why you miss them or why you are now breaking free from their influence for good.

Especially when grieving, we can feel paralyzed. That makes it very hard to write more than “Dear XY”. In this case, you can use the following ten journal prompts:

10 Journal Prompts as inspiration for your letter

  • Describe the person who has passed away. What did they mean to you and what significance did they have in your life?
  • How did you feel when that person passed away?
  • What is different now? What do you miss?
  • Is there something you would like to say to that person?
  • What version of yourself were you when you were with that person?
  • In what situations do you miss that person the most?
  • What do you feel when you remember that person? Are these feelings pleasant or uncomfortable?
  • If they are uncomfortable – can you explain why?
  • Describe your day to that person.
  • Ask that person for advice. Explain why you chose to turn to them for that matter.

Unsent Letters Part 1: Letters to your younger self

Our past experiences and decisions shape who we are today. Oftentimes, though, we quarrel with them, thinking we’ve made unforgivable mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes somewhere along the way. It’s human, it’s natural! There are very few mistakes out there that can never be amended. Most of the time, you f*ck up and you learn from it. The real problems start when you’re unable to forgive yourself. That doesn’t just happen automatically when others forgive you – you basically have to accept your own friend request!

But not only our own mistakes can make it hard to be friends with ourselves. If you’re dealing with trauma or grief, you might find yourself wondering if it was somehow your fault, if you could/should have done something differently, etc.

Even if you’re someone who doesn’t have regrets about mistakes you’ve made or if you haven’t gone through trauma, there could still be events in your past, events that might seem minor, but that have complicated your relationship with yourself. Very often, these events are associated with relationships with other people – family members, partners, friends.

Are you friends with yourself?

If you find yourself being very hard on yourself, having harsh inner dialogues or unconscious beliefs like “I’m not good enough”, “I’m stupid”, etc., you might be at war with yourself – maybe without even realizing it. Here are some journal prompts to help you find out how healthy your relationship with yourself is:

  • Are you uncomfortable with thinking about the past? Why?
  • Do you have regrets? About what?
  • Are you talking to yourself like you would to a friend? Write about an example.
  • How important is it to you to get validation from others?
  • Is the feeling of “not being good enough” familiar to you? In what situations does it occur?

You’ve come to the conclusion that your relationship with yourself could need some improvement? Journaling might help! Writing letters to your past self is a powerful method to reflect, see things from a different perspective and start the process of making peace with yourself.

“Dear younger self…”

When can this writing therapy method help?

  • When you’re unable to forgive yourself for something
  • When you’re battling addiction
  • When you’re dealing with trauma
  • When you’ve felt unheard in the past or when you’ve been afraid to speak up
  • When you catch yourself talking down to yourself

How to do it

Grab a pen and a piece of paper or a notebook. Choose a time of the day where you have little to no distractions at all. Make yourself comfortable, maybe with a cup of tea or a candle. Think of a time in your past that springs to your mind right now or that’s on your mind a lot. You can choose that version of yourself to write a letter to. However, it doesn’t have to be that specific. Just figure out if you want to write to the child you once were or to a more recent version of yourself. If there isn’t anything specific you wish to address, you don’t even need to make that decision – just write to your “younger self” and see what happens during the process.

You can just start writing and watch what comes up once you’ve started. Anything goes! If you’re hesitant about free writing though, here are seven journal prompts for you to inspire what your letter could be about:

  • What did your younger self do/think that your current self is uncomfortable with? How did that contribute to where you are now?
  • Is there something you want/need to forgive your younger self for?
  • Is there something that your younger self did that you’re grateful for?
  • What did your younger self do better than your current self?
  • What advice would you give your younger self?
  • What do you know now that you wish you knew back then? Why?
  • Describe your younger self and how different or similar this version is to today’s version of you

Let’s go – get started right now and let me know how it goes!


5 simple tips to start a journaling routine

Journaling can help you with a lot of things: It can clear your thoughts, create more mindfulness and even support you when dealing with trauma. No matter why you choose to start journaling, one thing is always important, and that is consistency. Establishing something new as a routine is not always easy. Here are a few tips how you can integrate this healing type of writing into your everyday life.

Treat yourself to nice accessories

Buy a notebook and a pen that you really like. You are more likely to grab a book you find pretty and a pen you can easily write with. That way, you get really excited about filling all the blank pages.

Don’t fear the blank page

You don’t consider yourself a writer and feel weird about just starting to write? Then maybe a book to fill in could be the right pick for you. In books like this, you will find questions and food for thoughts, or lists to complete with the possibility to write directly into the book. They are an awesome alternative for people who don’t like to write on their own.


Try different types of journaling

If you have chosen a notebook with blank pages, you have the choice: either just start writing, look back on the day, use journal prompts… the possibilities are endless! Gather some information about different methods of journaling and use those that are the most appealing to you. Maybe you will discover one that you stick with, maybe you like to switch back and forth – having a routine doesn’t mean that you have to use only one method.

Find the time of day that suits you best

Some people love to write in the morning, when the mind is still clear, others prefer to finish the day with a journaling session, and yet others like to write both in the morning and in the evening. Experiment a little and try writing on different times of the day. Find out what time feels best for you, but also when you are calm and relaxed, so that you don’t have to write in a rush.

Create a ritual

Just like with yoga, it is important to make your sessions enjoyable. There should be no distractions or interruptions, a nice atmosphere, a comfortable temperature, maybe a mug of tea, your favorite incense sticks… whatever helps you feel your best! When you establish a nice ritual, you will start to look forward to it and it will be easier to stay consistent.

Which of these tips are you going to try first? Do you need any more advice to start journaling? If yes, feel free to contact me – I’d love to help!