Journaling is often described as simply writing down what you did during the day. However, the real purpose of journaling should be to explore your ideas and other’s opinions, and because of that, journaling makes good practice for writing all sorts of papers. Seriously, do you think you or whoever reads your journals in a few years will care how good the chicken sandwich you had for lunch was? Probably not.
Here are three aspects of journaling that will help you become an expert writer:
When you journal, it's like you're arguing with yourself. When you write a journal entry, you want to make sure you actually define and introduce your ideas. Writing the ideas out without bias will help you find the answer to the solution objectively. This is sort of like how you would introduce your topics in an essay. You make sure the audience understands each side of the argument, or at least the side you want to portray, so that they can follow your train of thought.
When you journal, you should write about how you feel about a certain topic, how others feel about it, or why you think it is important. To ensure clarity, make sure to emphasize and explain the benefits and drawbacks of each argument. Journaling will give you practice in exploring and arguing for ideas.
When you have explored ideas thoroughly, you should be able to come to a conclusion about the topic. Whether or not you include outside research does not matter in a journal. What matters is your personal conclusion and whether or not it will affect how you live.
Journaling will help you think thoroughly and critically, as well as give you lots of practice writing so that you can improve.