I can’t think of a better New Years resolution than committing to a journalling practice. Journalling feels good in the moment and has proven to have lasting benefits of stress reduction, enhanced emotional intelligence, and greater overall ability to crush personal goals. (All this for cost of a notebook you want to work with!)

If you’re starting from scratch with journalling, a little direction will go a long way to get the most out of your time and effort. Here are five local workshops that can help set you off on the right foot.

Cathartic Writing with Sana Badhwar
Dec. 5th, 7 – 9 PM, Centre for Social Innovation, 720 Bathurst Street, $30 – $40

This workshop is all about practicing the art of rules-free, stream-of-consciousness writing with the goal of getting in touch with your subconscious. Sana is a health and wellness entrepreneur (check her out at here) who incorporates creative writing, meditation and breath work into a holistic practice that aims to leave participants feeling inspired and centered.

Story of My Life
Jan. 7, 11:00 – 12:30 PM & Jan. 9th, 10 – 11:30 AM, Central Library, 1 Atkinson St., Richmond Hill, Free

This is for aspiring memoirists and storytellers. If you’re the one in your crew who has stories for days, get organized and start putting those tales together with a dedicated journal practice. This series of two introductory workshops will guide you through the process of journalling your life story.

Visual Journal Journey Workshop
Jan 14th, 21st, 28th, and Feb. 7th, 10 -12 PM, $185.00

Your inner child will have a heyday at this series of four art journalling workshops. It’s hosted by an art therapist and designed to help you jump-start and maintain a creative practice that works. Through mixed media prompts, you’ll learn how to tap into your inner wisdom and guidance system through art.

Firefly Creative Writing’s Keep Your Pen Moving: A creative writing workshop for anyone who wants bulgy hand muscles
Jan. 17th – March 7, 10 – 12:45 PM, Junction

For those who may not call themselves writers but love the act of writing (or maybe would love it if their inner critic didn’t attack at the sight of a blank page), Firefly IS the medicine. Run by a crew of passionate ladies who are the definition of in-it-for-the-right-reasons, this organization is all about support, acceptance, and getting your words on paper, whatever it takes. This workshop will focus on writing letters, poems, tributes, rants, memories, and exploring creativity through words.

Urban Writing Sanctuary
Jan 28, 9:30 – 4:30 PM, 555 Richmond St. W, $145.00

Wind down January with a restorative Saturday creative writing “sanctuary” dedicated to recharging your spirit and reconnecting you with your writing practice. Designed to be a retreat away from the world, the sanctuary will guide you through short writes and supportive sharing (any form of writing from “grocery lists to manifestos” are welcome), good food, and quiet time in a creative studio space on Richmond.