Sometimes we associate wellness or self care with meditation, exercise or yoga. They undoubtedly can be helpful ways to look after your physical and mental health.
Have you thought of journaling and the benefits it can bring?
In this blog we explore some of the reason you may want to start keeping a regular journal.
As a topline thought - journaling can help us stay mindful - in that if we keep a journal every day it helps to remind us what is important to us and the values we hold dear.
The process of writing things down, can in itself help to relieve the stress you maybe feeling. For example, listing the 3 things you feel grateful for, any wishes you may have can certainly help your frame of mind.
The process of journaling encourages us to reflect on our deepest thoughts and feelings. Research has shown that over time this can have the impact of reducing levels of stress, lowering blood pressure, improving your mood and generally improving a sense of wellbeing. An enhanced sense of wellbeing can have the result of people less depressed or anxious.
By writing down your thoughts, it can help you distance yourself from them. If you are having negative or unhelpful thoughts, the process of writing them down can help you rationalise them. Having written them down, you can then question them or even position them in a way that states - My mind is thinking.....in this case you are able to acknowledge that you are NOT your thoughts.
I find that writing my journal at the end of the day helps me to process my emotions. By waiting to write the journal has allowed me to allow my emotions to settle from earlier in the day and the process of writing them down helps me to sort / articulate them. Also, by writing our emotions down may also have the affect of reducing their strength.
Seeing your emotions, feelings in black and white helps to define them. Having defined or articulated your feelings it can help to provide clarity as to what the next potential steps are.
Having written down thoughts and feelings, you are mentally more prepared to articulate them as and when required.
Research has shown that when people regularly journal about their deepest thoughts and feelings that they visit the doctor less and have fewer sick days.
Over time you may find you notice a range of themes from what you feel grateful for, your range of emotions. Reviewing your journal can help highlight broader values and feelings in your life. Recognising these themes can provide a first step in working out how to address those emotions or feelings may be affecting your general wellbeing.
The key to journaling is to keep at it, over an extended period of time. Don't worry if you let it slip once in a while; it's as important that you restart it when you are able to.