Throughout my life, I’ve always been quite independent and alone. I grew up as an introvert, so I tended to keep to myself most of the time. I was scared of being judged or being an inconvenience to others, so I always bottled things in. My safe space to express myself was my diary. It is where I like to go when I’m going through a difficult breakup, coping with losses, or when I have no clue what my future will look like.
Over time, my appreciation for journaling grew, I would start my day by letting my mind drift while my hand filled up the pages. Journaling has gained popularity in recent years as a helpful tool for mindfulness. If you are on the fence, here are a few reasons why you should start journaling.
Organizing Your Thoughts and Goals
For those of us who are always striving to achieve new goals, journaling is where we keep our roadmap, keep track of our goals by breaking them into smaller, manageable tasks, that we can expand on them with greater details. It is important to always revisit and revise our goals, so keeping them in our journal and diary will make it easier for us to read when we need to be reminded. If you find it awkward to start writing on your own, I recommend trying prompted journals. These are short prompts that are sure to get your thoughts started.
Reflecting on Your Thoughts and Emotions
Writing our feelings down can sometimes feel cathartic. All of our emotions, good or bad, are easier to understand when we can read them out loud. I found this extremely helpful when I was experiencing self-destruction splattered with harsh criticism. I wrote down all of the negative thoughts that I had about myself, and it was a wake-up call to read all of those things back to myself. We tend to internalize negative thoughts, which can affect our emotions. So by seeing those negativities in writing, it will help to hold us accountable for our own thoughts.
Entering a Safe Space
I find my journal to be my safe haven, in fact it is one of the places that I like to withdraw to on a bad day, as part of my self-care. I think it is a place where my brain can put its guard down, and start processing new emotions without fear of being judged. Journals can be taken anywhere, on a road trip, long flights, even on a solo date. We can share a few short sentences or fill up pages until our hand is cramped.
Many of my blog and vlog topics start in my journal. Journaling is so freeing and relaxing to the brain, and when our brain relaxes, that’s when new ideas tend to pop up. It allows us to be creative with our words and emotions. As ideas show themselves, we can quickly jot down our new ideas, expand on details, and curate a plan to make it happen. All of these are kept in one safe place where we can go back for references.
Increasing Personal Gratitude
One practice that I always seek is to write down the things I’m thankful for. Whether it be waking up next to my boyfriend in the morning, talking on the phone with my parents, dinner with my close friends, or a nice walk with my dogs. As I slow down and start writing my blessings, I feel more humble about the things that I have. Personal gratitudes are things that we can read back on when we are going through a tough time.
Journaling is like writing our own self-help book, and it is a guideline that provides us valuable insights into our brain. We may not know 100% of how our brain operates, but journaling can help us capture the dialogue that our feelings and thoughts are trying to convey. It is a great tool to help inspire our creativity and keep track of our gratitudes. I hope you enjoyed this blog, and I hope it’ll inspire you to start journaling. See you in my next post.