University lecturer brings journaling phenomenon to Manchester Central

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A university lecturer who landed her job after journaling about her career ambitions and plans is behind a new large-scale journaling event being held at Manchester Central next month.

Becki Cross, a lecturer in business and enterprise at the University of Central Lancashire, started to map out her career ambitions when the pandemic forced life to pause. “I’m really career-focused and decided it was an opportunity to reinvent myself and follow my long-term career goals. By daily journaling I was able to work through my thoughts and clarify what I really wanted from life. I firmly believe I wouldn't have got my current job without journaling,” she explains. 

“It allowed me to make action plans, think through issues thoroughly and stopped me from burying my head in the sand. Now I want to open the doors for others to use this as a tool to make a lifestyle change - no matter how big or small.”

On Saturday 1 July, Becki will host JournalFest, alongside PlannerFest and StationeryFest. These combined events will see more than a thousand fans descend on Manchester Central to interact with and hear from inspiring people who use journaling for good. Aimed at both beginners and established journaling fans, it comes as the popularity in journaling continues - with more than 400 million views of  ‘journaling ideas’ on TikTok. 

Becki added: “Journaling allows you to get perspective on a variety of things happening in everyday life. I have several journals ongoing and I change my style depending on what's going on and what my brain needs. It’s all about the action of putting pen to paper - it doesn’t have to be time consuming - so it’s accessible for all at a relatively low cost; while having a really positive impact on wellbeing. I am now even exploring a PhD researching the positive impact reflective writing can have for entrepreneurs and small businesses.”

The events are part of Manchester Central’s incubator scheme, bringing new ideas and a wealth of visitors to the region. This event is understood to be a ground-breaking event - the first journaling meet-up on this scale within Europe.

“Manchester Central allows us to host these events in a fantastic space which gives visitors a unique experience. We would like the city to be the UK’s beating heart for all things journaling, planning and stationery and I can’t wait to see what the events will bring next month,” explained Becki. 

Shaun Hinds, CEO at Manchester Central, said: “It’s exciting to welcome this brand new event concept to our schedule through Incubator and journaling certainly has become a phenomenal success. Becki is testament to how such pastimes can make a really positive impact. I’m thrilled that Becki and her team have been able to bring this brilliant initiative to Manchester and am sure it’ll be a huge success.”

PlannerFest and JournalFest will be hosted conference-style with the promise of a full day of activities, workshops and presentations, including food and refreshments. With a festival vibe, these VIP tickets are priced at £90. StationeryFest will provide an exhibition and shopping experience for £10 (£5 concessions, carers and under 5s free). There will also be ‘creativity stations’ offering attendees the opportunity to participate in small activities, try products or learn new skills.

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