Benefits of keeping a journal
Life is hectic and oh so hard. At times it’s down right brutal. But then there are these magical moments that make us forget all the pain that came before. As we have progressed as humans are starting to become more aware of mental health; keeping a journal is more current than its ever been. Why keep a journal though? Let’s go though some reasons why you may want to keep a journal.
1. To store feelings
Our number one reason is simply what a journal is by design: to store feelings. It’s oddly satisfying to have a place to write about your feeling without anyone watching. Put all those ifs, buts in place and just tell your own side of the tale. We are emotional creatures after all and having an outlet for all these raging emotions throughout the day is a strong benefit of keeping a journal. Plus this ties in perfectly with benefit number two.
2. Looking back from a distance
Do there are a few ways you can approaching writing a journal entry. It can be as simple as keeping a chronological order of events told from the I perspective. But at some point you will probably mention people around you. Events that occurred. And how you got into a mess in the first place. During life we experience these events in the here and now. In the heat of the moment with no place to hide. While writing though we are sorta looking at it from afar. This practice can come with great new insights and empathy for other characters in your story of life. You may even realize you should’ve done things differently. Hopefully saying sorry and making amends for the mistakes we all do inevitably makes is still on the cards.
3. Emotional resistance
There’s a lot to be said about mindfulness. Living life to aware of your feelings, actions and all your senses being engaged. To be present at all times. Listen mindfully to others and practicing your craft as if there’s not a worry in the world. These beautiful characteristics come with one potential flaw; emotional resistance. How well are you equipped to deal with the sudden brutal curveballs life throws at us? Keeping a journal helps create some distance between our emotions and the raw event that triggered these emotions. A simple way to see how this works is by using this template: During my day …. happened and this caused me to feel …. Emotions are created in our body and should be embraced. Often however putting emotions on paper before handeling on its merits is the better approach. For example you are trying to keep a diet. One day suddenly you find yourself craving chocolate and caving in. Your direct response can be to enjoy that bar of chocolate and perhaps even give in on more treats as “this day is already lost anyway”. The next day knowing you are no longer on that steak of successful days it may be attractive to again jump off the bandwagon a bit here and there. If you were keeping a journal you would’ve seen that these last few days made you feel empowered. And that this last day wasn’t a strong one and actually didn’t give you the satisfaction you were seeking. now you have not only saved you from diverging from your goal but you also made yourself more aware they caving in to chocolate doesn’t give you the satisfaction you may seek.
4.Keeping a journal is fun
So far we’ve discussed good emotional benefits to keeping a journal or diary. We forgot to mention one very important benefit: it’s plain fun. Keeping a diary is like working on a time machine. You can open any page and re-live a day in your life in hopefully vivid detail. Go back and read how you overcame obstacles, enjoyed a visit to Disney Land with the kids, or spent the entire day on the beach eyeing an attractive guy that is now your husband.
Reading back on your journal we hope you experience joy. We hope your tale is one with many facets and of course that happily ever after. To get there though if you haven’t already we hope today can be your day dot.