Journaling is merely the act of taking some time out of the busy day, to sit down and write, draw, doodle anything that comes to mind. This might seem like a small act, however it does help one to stay clear of distractions and motivates one towards their individual goals. The act of journaling, can help you make better choices, learn which traits are destructive, all in all it evolves you to your ideal self.
Writing things down also gives you a new perspective on things, it helps you realize what things you must be prioritizing. In a way, it solidifies your personality, that’s why people at a young age are always encouraged to keep a diary. It helps them grow. It’s also fun to read those stories back and reminisce at all the issues, which presented themselves as life and death situations! This small act can be the reason, you realize that I have gone through much rougher times, and it might just provide you with the courage to keep pushing on.
Helps sharpens your memory
It’s been scientifically proven that our memories get corrupted over time, our brain tends to mess up our memories and make up scenarios which probably didn’t occur! This leads us to the conclusion that relying only on our memory to recall past events might not be efficient, as our brains might alter the reality. Therefor this is where journaling comes in handy, if you write even one sentence every day, the record of that day is kept and there is no altering of those events (unless someone breaks into your diary and changed the events, therefore changing the past and thus changing the future!).
However, the act of keeping track of your day causes your brain to remember the accurate events, as the words on the paper can’t lie. The memories might get fuzzy, but the journal you keep will be able to bring back even the faintest of memories.
Solidify your personality
Once you get into the habit of keeping a journal, you will be able to know yourself better. The personality of a young person for example, is not yet fixed yet, it’s still fluctuating. Keeping a journal will let them understand what is important to them, on what the place value on. Their beliefs are not yet rock solid, therefore keeping a journal, will let them figure out what their boundaries and limits are, what is acceptable and what is crossing the line to them.
However, this does not mean one needs to be young in order to start journaling, you can start at any age. Self-improvement does not have a set time frame, people keep improving throughout their lives and strive to achieve and do better. Journaling might just let you see the flaws and bad habits you have accumulated and help you understand the reason behind those habits. Keeping a journal and seeing those entries of bad habits might just cause you to have an assessment of the goals and motives of your life and whether this bad practice is necessary to obtain those goals.
Journaling for Anxiety
Life has become so hectic, that for a person not to experience anxiety, in some form has just become inevitable. Anxiety not only wears a person down, it blurs all the goals and milestones in your mind and until it just seems like your brain is stuck in fog. Penning down what’s troubling you alleviates the unrest and lifts the fogs of dread from your mind. We are social animals, we relieve stress by conveying our problems and thoughts to someone else. As great as friends and family are they can’t hear your woes all the time, that’s where the journal comes in.
A journal can be like your new best friend, eager to help you solve your problems and listening to your every whim. Writing down what causes your anxiety, might help you get to the root of the problem. It can help figure out your triggers. After you figure out what is causing your turmoil, you can either fight the problem head on or run from it.
Unleash your creative side
It’s becoming a popular trend on social media, to keep a journal for a year and notice the improvements you make during that time period. It’s a fun idea and a good self-care exercise you do every day in order to keep your mental health in check. This can be a great outlook to unleash the artist inside you and get creative.
Journaling doesn’t only limit you to words, it can be drawings, collages, paintings, anything that you feel like. It’s just an activity that helps your mind distress and not think about the other matters at hand. You don’t have to be a Picasso, just let the paint flow and go from there. The act of taking some time out just to spend with yourself, greatly reduces the chances of one developing a mental illness, or incline towards negative thoughts.
Once everything good or bad is in your journal, you’ll feel as if a weight has been lifted from your shoulders. The bad thoughts will remain in the journal locked away, however the happy emotions shall not double when you write about them in your journal.
You will often see people setting goals around New Year’s Eve. They always set resolutions but how often have you seen them actually gone through to the end with them. Barely. This is because during the New Year’s Eve, everyone is setting resolutions therefore it’s easy to get into the spirit and set goals. Unfortunately, after the end of January the hype dies down and you lose motivation.
Now let’s study why this occurs. The pitfall, of people once they set their resolution is that they rely on other people, and don’t observe self-discipline within themselves. They forget to realize that in order to achieve their goals they have to constantly think about it each and every day. They have to work on achieving their goals each and every day. Journaling and tracking your progress can help you push your limits and help you in your struggle. Keeping track on paper will help you have a clear idea of how far away you are from your goal.
Accepting your past
We all have a chapter of our lives we don’t read aloud. Writing that chapter down in a journal, will help you heal and accept your past. Most of don’t realize the baggage we carry due to our past experiences. Penning those feelings down will help you understand why you function the way you do, why you overreact/underreact in certain situations. The traumas of the past can be hard but we all must overcome them in order to grow and be better.
If we keep carrying around our baggage, the situations of the real life will only tear you down more. Thus, it becomes essential for us to rid of our baggage and accept our emotions from past experiences. We must be kinder to ourselves. Writing about yourself and your experiences, and talking to yourself in a kinder tone would do wonders for your mental state. Therefore, writing about yourself in a kind tone might result in you being kinder to yourself in situations in the long run.
This benefit is just a given. If your journaling for a whole year and you write even a sentence each day, you will be able to improve your handwriting. Handwriting might not be your actual goal to obtain while keeping this journal, however it will be a great bonus skill. You will be able to relieve your mental stresses as well as get your writing style better. How cool is that, it’s a two in one deal nobody can resist.
This can even be your creative outlook to try out new writing styles. Discover what you like. Explore calligraphy, understand how you like to write your I’s and M’s. Realize that this is your creative space and that its free of any judgement, here you can start with horrible handwriting, however it’s a granted that you will have improved handwriting once you finish. This journal could be the place where you invent a whole new typographic line or just improve on the existing. The world is your oyster when it comes to your journal, as you as the writer shall decide its faith.
Whenever you get into a disagreement with someone you don’t always see the other person’s perspective. It gets muddles as you are too busy trying to think of the rebuttal you will present to the person. However, the approach of writing the argument down in your journal and seeing both sides, you are able to see where you could be at fault. The fault might be yours or the other parties however, writing the argument down helps you to at least see the argument from an outsider’s view, without having too many biases.
This is a practice, I have personally done and I can tell you it works wonders. In the heat of the argument you might not be able to see how you were also wrong, but after writing it down and reading the argument again you can always reach a mutual agreement, which caters to both the parties.
Helps you be Grateful
Journaling also is a self-reflection activity, it helps you realize that even though there might be a great may ups and down in life however you have many blessings to be thankful for. Whether this be your family, friends, spouse or whoever is special to you. Journaling every day, writing about the events happening around you and how you feel about them makes you realize how amazing your life really is.
Yes, there may be highs and lows, but you bounce back and that’s life. However, being grateful for the blessings you have only humbles you and makes you appear as a down to earth person. Nobody wants to be around someone who brags about their luxuries. Therefore, if this small activity can help someone realize how blessed they are, they might have a good state of mind, reducing their chances of depression and anxiety. Being Grateful and sending grateful vibes into the world only helps the person, as what goes around comes around.
To sum up this article, I would just suggest the reader to maybe buy a cute little notebook, or a sketchbook and just give journaling a go. You might not have the most aesthetically pleasing collages or Oscar winning essays on the first go, but you have to remember that is not the reason for keeping a journal. A journal is just for you, it a private ordeal.
Keep a journal and notice your habits and how they change or maybe don’t change. The act of devoting some time to just yourself and journaling can be a wind down activity for all ages to give a go. Journals can be of any types, be it a mood journal or habit tracker, they can all provide you with great benefits. These benefits can mold your personality and will enable you to communicate better and have more confidence in life. Happy Journaling!
Being in touch with your Zen
Being in touch with your inner self is vital to happiness. You can’t be fully happy unless your mind is happy. Being mindful and being happy are closely related. Therefore, writing in a journal each day is forcing you to feel, to get in touch with your inner emotions. In order to be truly happy, you need to set your emotions free and not bottle them all up. Its only by confronting them can you achieve true happiness.
As by journaling you are talking about your emotions every day, this will help you change the narrative and help you understand to even see the bad in not such an evil villain light. As journaling every day, will help change your narrative, it will also help you achieve a better mindset, that will be conducive to achieving your goals. Journaling will also provide you with an outlet to set your emotions free and this is the greatest benefits of journaling. It allows you the space to not pent up your emotions, but rather see them and acknowledge them in a good light.
Andrew Samaan (author) from egypt on November 24, 2020:
Name on November 24, 2020: