Having a journal has a lot of wonderful benefits. I use it as part of my healing process. It allows me to pick up thought patterns and sometimes it allows me to put myself in other people’s shoes.
Benefits of having a journal
- Keeps your thoughts organized
- Improves creativity
- Improves your writing (the more you write, the more your writing improves)
- You are more likely to do something if you write it down
- Relieves stress (release emotions as you write them)
- It allows you to self-reflect (take a moment to focus on your thoughts)
- Helps with memory (writing it down may help you remember it later)
- Boosts your mood (releasing thoughts that make you sad will release stress)
- Help you connect with your inner-self
- It helps you let go of negative thoughts (if something is troubling you, writing it down may help you relieve some of that stress)
- Helps you come up with solutions (If you write down your struggles, you can release them and find ways to fix them)
- Enhances your self-awareness (Notice your thought patterns and triggers)
- Track progress (sometimes we have so much to do and so much to accomplish that it helps us when we track our progress especially if we are doing some sort of challenge, you can notice how far you’ve come)
- You can also track your goals
- Enhance communication skills (you learn how to express yourself better)
- You can use your journal to write pros and cons about a situation you are not sure of
When to Journal
-Write as soon as you wake up
Our mind is more clear and active when we wake up. Maybe write down your dreams and notice if you are having similar dreams. Or you can write down what you are grateful for as soon as you wake up. Maybe write down what you expect from the day or any plans that you might have.
-Write when you’re feeling a certain emotion
This helps me, sometimes I am sad or confused about something but when I write it down, it helps me better analyze the situation.
-Write before bed and analyze your day
What was the best part of your day? What would you have changed? Did you accomplish what you wanted to accomplish? What did you not accomplish that you could leave for the next day? And so on…
Remember to be honest with yourself, you are the only person reading your journal
Don’t be hard on yourself, noticing some thought patterns might take you to new realizations but the idea is to find solutions, not dwell on them.
Whether you use your journal to clarify your thoughts, get to know yourself better, put yourself in someone else’s shoes, explore mindfulness, self- discipline, track progress or goals, or for healing purposes, just keep in mind that that is your safe place. No one should have access to it unless you want them to. Be realistic but also be kind to yourself. The point is not really to beat yourself up but to help you better yourself and keep yourself organized.