You might say to yourself, why should I start journaling, I haven’t got time to journal! How could journaling really help me? I’ve already got more than enough to do already” The following facts may convince you.
You might say to yourself, why should I start journaling, I haven’t got time to journal! How could journaling really help me? I’ve already got more than enough to do already”
The following benefits that may hopefully convince you.
1.It’s good for your health.
There is more and more evidence to support the fact that journaling has a positive impact on physical well-being.
University of Texas at Austin psychologist and researcher James Pennebaker reports that regular journaling strengthens immune cells, His other research shows that journaling decreases the symptoms of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis.
Pennebaker believes that writing about stressful events helps you come to terms with them, thus reducing the impact of these stressors on your physical health.
2. Good for whole brain thinking
More scientific evidence has shown that journaling accesses both the left and right side of your brain. Just by writing, you are using predominantly the left side of your brain which is responsible for being rational, objective and analytical.
While you are journaling and using the left side of the brain, you also use the right side as it is the side that is responsible for our creativity, emotions and intuition.
You are using your whole brain to better understand yourself, others and the world around you.
3. Clears your thoughts
It helps you clear your thoughts and feelings. Have you ever gone through times when you feel totally confused and jumbled up inside.
Just take some time out to write down what you are thinking and feeling – don’t edit. Don’t worry about your grammar or if it makes sense. It is a great activity to help you understand what is happening inside you.
4. Understand yourself more
By doing this on a regular basis, it will help you to get to know yourself better. You could start to understand what makes you feel happy and confident.
You will also start to know what’s good for you, what’s bad – including those people that you shouldn’t have in your life and to make sense of why they shouldn’t be around.
5. Reduces stress
It also helps to reduce stress. Writing about what you are feeling without judgement, without criticism. You could talk about difficult painful things that you find really hard to talk about. That you have held inside and can’t explain it to anyone else. By writing about them, it will help to release that painkillers
Because you are using both the left side of the brain responsible for being analytical, objective and rational – also the right-side of our brain responsible for our emotions, our creativity and intuition etc.
When we write down what we write down, it helps us to be both creative and objective, analytical – which helps us solve difficult problems. It helps us to use so much of our brain.
That’s why in the business world, you find people brainstorming to find a way forward for their business, they write business plans, reports etc – Most business people prefer to hand-write it first.
6. Keeps a record
Another good thing about journaling is that you keep a record of how you used to feel. I’ve looked back at some old journals and it makes me feel grateful for where I am now and that real lasting change is possible.
You will say to yourself “Oh my God, was that me?
How do you start journaling?
I like to get a nice book to journal in so that when I pick it up, it’s pretty, bright and colourful – but it’s entirely up to you what you use. You can buy some from Amazon, Paperchase in the UK and WHSmiths – If you are strapped for cash – You can get some from the Pound Shop.
Try and do it everyday – Just before you go to bed as it helps get rid of the difficulties you have faced during the day. To get all that stuff that goes round and round in your head, down on paper.
Don’t discriminate, don’t judge what you are writing. Your English School Teacher is not going to read this, this is for your eyes only.
You can use a journal for several purposes – you can just write down your thoughts and feelings of the day.
You can also use it to write down all the good things that has happened to you during the day, It could be something you ate that you enjoyed, a piece of music that you liked – doesnt have to be anything thing – sometimes we forget when we are depressed that the simple things that can make like seem worthwhile.
You could also use it to plan what you want to do with your days, with your life on a whole – just brainstorm and write down what you would ideally like to do, write down your ideas, your dreams, your passions, your hopes for the futures – By revisiting that daily, it will help you to focus on what you really want in your life.
If you have journaled or you are thinking of journaling let me know your ideas and what you think.
I am a Therapist based in Sutton Coldfield, UK also available online.
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