Journaling Benefits For The Mind
Dear diary. That’s how we sometimes see journaling, isn’t it? We conjure up an image of a teenager lounging on their bed, writing about their crush ignoring them in the cafeteria. We overlook its value as a tool. Yet, repeatedly science tells us that journaling offers a host of benefits for the mind. (https://www.uwhealth.org/news/the-benefits-of-journaling/48224).
Let’s take a look at how.
• Embracing Mindfulness
When you journal about your frustrations, concerns, and anxieties you remove their power. When worry loses its edge you can move to a more mindful place.
• Stretches Your Vocabulary
As you write in your journal you will be exploring language. You will reach points where you wonder what word to use in the moment and you will search for new ones. This is going to stretch your vocabulary, as well as encourage your imagination.
• Chasing Goals
Your journal is a place where you can write about your dreams, ambitions, and goals for life. Simply writing them can’t be enough to achieve those goals, can it? While it’s more complicated than that, you certainly can’t achieve your goals if you don’t know what they are and note them down. By writing your dreams out you’re telling your brain it’s important. It encourages your brain to red flag opportunities that will help you achieve your goal.
• Supporting Emotional Intelligence
A journal is an ideal place for you to process your feelings. As you do this, you will learn to manage and perceive emotions (yours and others). It’s this that will increase your self-awareness as well as your emotional intelligence.
• Increasing Comprehension & Improving Memory
Words represent ideas and as you formulate those ideas by forming letters your brain retains that information. So, by journaling, you are improving your memory and also increasing your comprehension.
• Increasing Self-Discipline
How can journaling support self-discipline? It requires you to set time aside to journal, daily, and that in itself is an act of self-discipline. Discipline breeds discipline. Just like a muscle that becomes stronger the more you exercise it. When you form a positive habit like journaling you are supporting your self-discipline and increasing your ability to spread good habits throughout your life. So, journaling will have a domino effect on healthy habits.
• Better Communication
The more you write, the better you can communicate with others. You put more thought into the words that you choose and how you communicate certain ideas. Journaling might not make you a better public speaker, but it will certain improve your overall communication skills.
• Promotes Healing
There is a healing power in the pen. We tend to overthink things and create unnecessary stress and anxiety for ourselves. Writing all of that out in a journal helps relieve those emotional blockages. What you’re doing as you write it all out is processing it in a way that makes it easier for you to comprehend. By doing that, you are freeing your mind from the emotionally tangled web you have weaved for yourself.
• Triggers Creativity
We already touched on creativity, but it bears repeating. Allowing yourself to write freely without thinking is an excellent way to beat writer’s block, trigger new ideas and thoughts, and just allow yourself to let go.
• Boosts Self-Confidence
When you journal about the positive experiences you have had your brain relives that joy and gets a healthy boost in self-confidence. It’s a great way to smother self-doubt when it rears its ugly head. It’s also a great mood booster.
Different Methods of Journaling
You don’t have to feel forced to keep a certain type of journal, since there are so many different ways to use one. Here are just some of the many methods of journaling you can use.
The first method of journaling is the most traditional form, which is where you simply write down your thoughts as often as needed. You might write in the journal a couple days a week when you have the time or a reason to do so, or you may journal once a day at the end of the day, similar to keeping a diary. This method is the most flexible since it is really up to you how you want to do it. With a general method of journaling, the frequency, what to include, and type of journal organization you use is entirely up to you.
This is a newer form of journaling, but one that is getting popular very fast. Bullet journaling provides a way to keep track of everything in your daily life, including finances, goals and bucket lists, family life, work, mental and physical health, and tons more. With bullet journaling, you are using primarily symbols and short words or phrases to discuss different things instead of full pages of writing like with a general or standard form of journaling. It also has an index and page numbers since there are so many different sections in the journal.
There are journals about a specific topic, such as your dreams. If you are someone with confusing, elaborate, or vivid dreams, this is the perfect journal to keep. You can have a dream section in a bullet journal, or dedicate one small journal to nothing but recording your dreams. It helps to write them down immediately upon waking, as you will forget them rather quickly.
A gratitude journal is one where you aren’t just talking about all your thoughts or what you do day to day, but actually only talks about the good things. It is meant to help you practice mindfulness and live a happier life through gratitude. You look at the positive parts of your day, no matter how big or small they are, and put those in your journal. By doing this, you are able to focus more on the things in your life and dwell less on the bad things. Over time, you can start to heal and live a more optimistic life.
To your continued success