While journaling may seem old school to many, it has been around for a long and is likely to stay. Most of us are overstimulated by information that is thrown at us online on a daily basis. Journaling can help you step away from the noise and focus on what matters.
While some prefer to write in a physical journal, having a digital one on your Mac has its perks. It’s easier to make the commitment, as you can refer to previous entries quicker, and some apps can mimic the feel of a physical journal quite well. As such, we’ll be looking at four of the best journaling apps for Mac.
This is an app that incorporates a mindful approach to journaling. As the name implies, the app is based on stoicism and tries to bring that approach into your life.
Each day, through a notification (which you can decide the time for), the app will ask you to write whatever is on your mind. When you tap that notification, it will ask how you’re feeling, whether you slept well the previous night, and what you’re trying to accomplish today. A similar system checks in with you each evening so you can reflect on how you spent your day.
However, you can just ignore all of this and use the journaling section to write freely whenever you want. Another great feature is that the app will often present you with helpful quotes and ideas from Stoic philosophers.
This is a useful app if you want to start journaling daily but want some accountability. It stands out because, on top of being a digital journal, it also helps you track your mental health and adapt to a different, more stable lifestyle.
Download: stoic. (Free, subscription available)
Evernote is one of the most powerful note-taking apps you can also use for journaling. With Evernote, you can simultaneously track your calendar, to-do list, and notes in one place. It also features a customizable home dashboard with widgets, allowing you to customize it to your needs.
The note section allows you to jot down ideas quickly, and you can use these notes to track progress on projects. A neat feature is that you can create tasks inside these notes as well, essentially combining a to-do list with those notes. It even syncs with your Google Calendar, ensuring you stay on top of your schedule.
From Evernote’s custom templates, you can find a couple that works well with journaling. For example, you can easily customize a template for a journal that asks you to reflect on your day. Set a time to get reminders for that journal every day automatically.
If you want to stay on top of things and track your progress, this is an app that will help you accomplish that. Evernote is more than a journal, so it can serve you better if you want to keep your task management and journal connected and in the same place.
Download: Evernote (Free, subscription available)
2. Day One Journal
The Day One journaling app mimics the feel of a physical journal while providing a lot of perks virtually. You can add photos, notes, audio, and even videos to your journal entries, making them feel more personal. It feels like your own private virtual space.
The app tracks your activity and sees if you are keeping up with the habit. It puts your journaling streak front and center, motivating you to keep it going. You can also add a widget to your home screen that tracks your weekly streak.
Along with your primary personal journal, you can create additional ones for other things in your life, like travel and fitness. It also has an interesting On This Day feature that lets you revisit past entries, much like Snapchat.
The search and filter options are also quite valuable. You can quickly sift through multiple journal entries using keywords or view them based on date and time. These features make the app easy to use and enjoyable, which goes a long way in helping you build that journaling habit.
Download: Day One Journal (Free, subscription available)
Notion functions like an all-in-one workspace that allows you to track progress on projects, check in on your to-do list, take notes, or even create a wiki-like interface to organize your research. If you want a tool that helps you to be organized, then this is the cream of the crop.
There are a lot of useful things that you can do in Notion, thanks to its customizable templates. For example, you can find templates for a bucket list, a daily journal, or a budget tracker.
Notion works well as a daily journal since all your entries are organized by date and time. You can create pages in Notion that link together, making it easier to reference other information based on your research.
This makes it a powerful app for journaling simply because you can link back to your previous thoughts and see how well you are learning and growing by reflecting on yourself. Since it works just like a wiki, Notion makes it easy to organize information without feeling overwhelmed.
Download: Notion (Free, subscription available)
Track Your Thoughts and Witness Your Personal Growth
Keeping a digital journal has never been easier, thanks to these excellent journaling apps for Mac. At the end of the day, though, a journal will only do you good if you commit to it. If you stick with it over a certain amount of time, you’ll see the benefits trickle into your life.
It turns out that while productivity apps are great, it depends on how you take advantage of their features. Otherwise, it’s just another collection of useless apps on your Mac. For example, note-taking apps are great, but that’s only if you keep track of what you’re writing inside them.