Guest Author Mari McCarthy

Today Robyn, from WOW, is stopping by with an old friend who has visited in the past.  She has a new book out that can help all of us.   So without further ado, please help me in welcoming Mari McCarthy back at the CMash blog!!


When Multiple Sclerosis robbed her right side of strength Mari decided to teach herself to write with her left hand. She gained more than strength, she found herself–buried talents, hidden baggage, and a way to heal herself from the inside out.

 Now a certified Journal Therapist, Mari shares her knowledge and experience with others by teaching them how to find their own strengths and talents and use them to solve problems and achieve goals.

Mari L. McCarthy is The Journaling Therapy Specialist, founder of Create Write Now and Journaling for the Health of It™.  Mari offers guidance, counseling and encouragement to writers through her many journaling eBooks and in private Journaling Jumpstart consultations. Mari’s next Start Journaling and Change Your Life in 7 Days Challenge will be June 4-10 Please join her!
Vist Mari at her website and blog.


Offbeat Journaling Practices – Journaling on your daily train commute, or before bedtime, or doing your Morning Pages faithfully are some commonly known journaling habits. Here are some less common ones.

Offbeat Journaling Practices
By Mari L. McCarthy

Though mostly we think of journaling as something we do in quiet, private moments at home, it may be useful to remember it can be a far more mobile habit than that. If conditions at home aren’t always conducive to journal writing, try any of these substitutes.

Take your journal with you and write:

  • During your morning commute
  • At your lunch hour
  • Sitting on a bench, as part of your daily walk in the park
  • Instead of ducking out for an afternoon snack
  • While waiting for appointments
  • In the bathroom, if you tend to sit for a while
  • To get back to sleep if you wake up in the middle of the night

Where you journal is one thing, why you journal is another. Again, the most common concept of journaling suggests it’s for the purpose of emotional dumping. And while that purpose is extremely useful and good, it alone is far from the only motivation to journal.

Journaling may be done for the purpose of remembering, documenting, guiding projects and challenges, projecting the future, solving problems, and a million more reasons.

You can also journal to record elements of your life. This is where things can get sweetly offbeat, while the returns can be remarkable. For fun, let’s consider a few ideas along these lines.

If you think of journaling as keeping a (usually) daily notation of something, creating a record that you can read over anytime in the future, then you could journal:

  • How you feel while drinking your coffee this morning
  • Today’s weather
  • Comments on your closest relationship
  • What you notice on the way to work
  • What you have for lunch
  • What you want today
  • Today’s achievements
  • Today’s failures
  • Today’s mistakes
  • Today’s humor
  • Something new I learned today
  • The most beautiful thing in your day
  • The song that’s playing in your head
  • How your workout went
  • Something you are grateful for
  • Spiritual musings of the day

Well, as you can see, we could go on forever. Which is the point. Just about anything you care about can be journaled.

I suggest a separate notebook for offbeat journals like these. And note that you’re likely to start off enthusiastically but eventually hit a wall. After many days of eager entries, suddenly one day you do not know how you feel, or you just don’t want to talk about the weather or today’s mistakes or whatever your chosen topic. Remember that this is the precise time to persevere! It is after you go beyond this hump that your discoveries multiply.

I’d love to hear some of your ideas about offbeat journaling, so please drop in a comment!

Mari L. McCarthy, journaling therapy specialist and author, owns Create Write Now, a website dedicated to all things journaling. The site includes hundreds of journaling prompts, personal journaling stories, interviews, a blog, and many other resources. Mari publishes many ebooks and e-workbooks to help journalers accomplish amazing things. She also conducts online Challenges, and you won’t want to miss her upcoming Start Journaling and Change Your Life in 7 Days Challenge, June 4-10.



Journaling, like any writing adventure or exercise program, tends to be cyclical—there are the times when you can’t wait to get-to-it and times when you can’t get started. Mari has the fix! It is her new e-workbook Start Journaling and Change Your Life in 7 Days.

In this workbook Mari addresses the most common roadblocks we come against in our journaling practice, from writer’s block and lack of time to finding motivation and silencing our inner critic. Whether you are new to journaling or need to climb out of a slump these seven days of writing prompts will get you moving in the right direction.



No items that I receive
are ever sold…they are kept by me,
or given to family and/or friends.

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2 thoughts on “Guest Author Mari McCarthy

  1. Everyone keeps telling me how important it is to keep a journal, but for some reason I struggle with it. This post is a great motivator to get people started in keeping a journal!!

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