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Can Young Kids Journal?

by Kim Ades May 27, 2016

kid writing
I received a pretty cool email from someone who participated in one of my coaching workshops. I’m grateful that he gave me permission to share it with you. But first, here’s a little bit of context.

For those of you that are familiar with our FOM Coaching method, you know that daily journaling, combined with daily feedback and weekly coaching calls, is what enables our clients to experience tremendous growth. Journaling is a self-reflection tool unparalleled to any other. It allows us to examine what is going on in our lives, what we truly want, and brainstorm how to attain it.

But is journaling for everyone, including toddlers? Here’s what he had to say:

My son, Ethan, is two years old. While I was journaling a few weeks back, I found myself thinking, ‘can a two-year-old journal? Wouldn’t they derive the same benefits from it as an adult would?’

Since then, every night at bedtime, right before Ethan’s last kiss good night, we journal together, sort of. We call this “The Ethan Journal,” and it involves talking through the feelings and events of his day from his waking moment up until bedtime.

He really seems to love it. His eyes fix upon mine the whole time, he listens ever so intently and he excitedly fills in any gaps I miss or corrects bits I don’t have right. We’ve only been doing this for three weeks, and he asks for The Ethan Journal by name at bed, and at nap time as well!

Now I hope I’m not building up his narcissism early, only to explode onto Facebook at age five. Just kidding – tech boundaries are huge in our household.

Seriously though, I feel as though helping him identify his feelings, make sense of his successes and setbacks, and demonstrating my interest in his life could really make a difference in his emotional development.

We’ll keep experimenting with The Ethan Journal as the dialogue becomes richer with age. Perhaps he’ll be lucky enough to have a journaling habit before he can write and for decades to come.

How cool is that? What Ethan is learning to do is to address the events of his day and learn from them. And he could even go a step further. After working through the ups and downs of his day, he could start thinking about what he wants the next day to look like!

What does he want to learn next? What does he want to achieve? Staying in a conversation with ourselves about what we want for our future allows us to align our thoughts with our goals, and eventually achieve them!

What is also interesting about this is that Ethan is journaling with someone. It’s as though he has a verbal diary that talks back, helps him unload, and can help pivot his thoughts toward ones that serve him. That is actually a huge part of what our clients do with their FOM coach.

So sure, journaling is for everyone, even two-year-olds!

Would you like to journal with a coach to help you start living the life you want?
You can start by taking our assessment.

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