Journaling is a tool we can use for self improvement, we record the day’s events and record our memories by writing down in a journal.
We can use journaling to explore ourselves and grow as a person, and improve our mental wellbeing.
The reason why it is beneficial to our mental health, is because it allows us to examine how we think and feel.
Therefore we learn how our minds work, just by writing down what has happened in the days events.
The way we write our thoughts in our journal has an impact to our development.
We must not write in a matter of fact way, as this will not help us develop or progress in a positive way.
We must do it in a more introspective way to benefit our mental growth.
How to start to journal for self improvement
Journaling is most effective when you do it daily, for about 20 minutes.
Each of us will find it easier either to set this time aside in the morning first thing, or in the evening after the days events.
The main thing is, to create the habit of writing in your journal at your set time.
Benefits of journaling
When you begin to journaling, we access the left side of our brain, which is analytical and rational.
While the left side of the brain is busy, this allows the right side of our brain to become creative.
1. Learn with gratitude
For your personal development, gratitude is very beneficial for happiness for growing into the person you want to be.
Being grateful naturally makes us feel happy most of the time, rather then depressed or sad.
When you learn to write down the things you are grateful for, it identifies the reasons to be happy.
Just make an entry in your journal a list of things that you are grateful for, or think of things you are thankful for.
Then write a bit more in depth why you’re thankful for these things, and what they mean to you.
While you are focusing on positive things in life, and not the negative things, this will create a good habit and boost your mood.
Pick out things that aren’t vague, choose a moment in your day you feel thankful for, and truly appreciate and be grateful.
2. Explore your emotions
Exploring your emotions is a great tool for learning about yourself, when you feel they are out of control.
Becoming more aware of what triggered these emotions, and why, can help towards gaining control to how you feel.
Write in a lot of detail to how you felt, and identify what did trigger these emotions.
Then when you find what caused this situation, try to to think why that provoked you.
Was it a past hurtful experience or a deep seated insecurity, then work out the connection between the two.
Now come up with ways to ease your difficult feelings now, and prevent them from happening again in the future.
This process will help you understand yourself better, and be more prepared if the situation happens again.
3. Clears your thoughts and feelings
Do you sometimes have many thoughts and feelings racing through your mind?
Writing down these emotions quickly will get you in tune with to your internal world of your mind.
4. Get to know yourself better
When you get yourself in to a habit of writing in a journal regularly, you will feel more happy and confident.
You will learn to avoid toxic people, or certain situations that damage your self esteem, therefore improve your mental wellbeing.
5. Reduces stress and anxiety
When you put your pen to paper, and write down what made you angry or sad or other painful emotions during the day.
It will help you to release yourself from these feelings, and will make your feel calmer and feel more in the present.
6. Solves problems
Journaling helps you with problems by writing them down, that you face in your daily life, can be solved better when we analyse these events when written down
We can rationalize them, not from a personnel perspective, but from an outsider looking in.
You will find strategies that allow you to solve your problems more quickly that you can apply to your situations.
When you are faced with a difficult problem, write in your journal about the situation your facing.
Both the facts and the thought and feelings that you have about it, because these things matter.
This allows you to access the problem solving part of the brain, so that you might find the information and ideas to solve the problem.
Reread what you have written, and evaluate it, and will have a better understanding what to do.
7. Analyse our conflicts with people
When we get into a dispute or argument with someone, we automatically think is are right.
Its only when we later write in our journal that we might learn something from these events.
The conflict that we encountered could of been just a misunderstanding by either party.
You might find that you were maybe a bit aggressive and they reacted to this, or vice versa.
But whatever your discoveries about the situation, you should learn and adapt to future similar events if they arise again.
8. Stream of consciousness
Writing in a steam of consciousness makes you aware of things lingering in your mind, that you’re not fully aware of.
Bringing these thoughts to the surface can help you to get to know yourself better.
It will bring to your attention your needs, fears and other things, and help you to make better decisions and what to do with your life.
Start the exercise by closing your eyes and taking a deep breath clearing your mind.
Now open your eyes and start to write in your journal, just writing what comes into your mind
If the urge takes you to draw a doodle do it, do whatever you feel, and don’t judge.
These thoughts might not feel relevant or important, but you will never know where your thought will lead you.
Don’t worry about spelling or punctuation, just let your thoughts flow onto the paper.
When you have finished, read what you have written, and consider why these thoughts came out.
They could reveal something about yourself you have never thought of before.