A journal has a lot of positive benefits. Journaling can be very helpful with your personal growth and development. When you regularly record your thoughts you’ll gain a lot of insight into your moods and your behaviors. Journaling is used to help you solve problems, reduce stress and help you to relax. It has been shown to improve your mental and your physical health. It improves self esteem and according to Dr. John Grohol, a CEO of Psych Central, it is estimated that at least one out of three persons suffer from a mental illness. Journaling can help to lower these mental illnesses and be used in conjunction with medication as well as counseling.
Additionally, journaling is a great tool to use in healing. At the age of 8 I began keeping a journal. As I matured, I wrote the typical issues of teen angst. Eventually, I began to journal into a more sophisticated practice. When I was in my 20s I took the time to read all of the Anaix Nina Diaries. I began to study Ira Progoff and attended a journal workshop and implemented the methods taught there. By using these methods I was able to go through the turbulent time of my divorce and I found hidden lessons from that experience. Today, I continue to use those techniques as well as other techniques that I have learned. In recent years, I have found new and creative art forms in my journaling. By using mixed media, I have learned to express and reshape myself in creative and unusual ways.
While there is lots of paper in the written word, some of those words are challenging to find. I have learned to make a collage of my thoughts and drawings. I can now create a true representation of my feelings and my thoughts and move beyond my analytical writing. This has helped me in my life. From failed relationships to recovering from grief and loss, I have a way to express myself. I can look back and reflect on where I have been and where I am going. This has given me a new understanding of my life. In ‘The Artists Way’, author Julia Cameron has suggested writing three pages of 750 words each morning. IN the beginning, this was a challenge. I found myself a bit overwhelmed, but with time, the jewels of wisdom and the direction emerged and I found myself finding new creativity when I followed her guidelines over the 12 weeks challenge.
If you truly wish to improve your perspective of life and clarify your life, begin journaling. You won’t know where you are going if you aren’t sure of where you have been. Your journal can be private. You can put it online with a secure password if you wish so that no one can ever access it. Keep it for your eyes only no matter where you put it. Here are some great tips to get you going on journaling.
1. Begin writing today. This very moment. Take a moment and describe your living situation, your job, your family, your relationships. Is this where you want to be? Be honest, this is for your eyes only.
2. For five or ten minutes each day, write. Let your thoughts wander and put them down. Do not edit your thoughts just keep writing. They don’t have to make sense. You don’t have to be a grammar nazi. You don’t have to worry about spelling. Just write. Center your thoughts.
3. Begin with dialogging your inner child. Write with your sub dominant hand. Answer them with your dominant hand. This exercise will help you to talk to your inner self.
4. Create an attitude of gratitude. Keep a daily list of what you are thankful for. Use uplifting quotes or scriptures if you are so inclined.
Keep your writing in one journal. Write in a separate section and take the time to read over it now and again. When you are down, read the uplifting section, when you need to vent, read that section.
5. Take pictures and put them in your journal. You need to draw, color, use collages, make it yours after all, it is your self expression and way to open up your world. Accept yourself as you are. Love yourself as you are. You cannot love others until you can love yourself.
6. Add in a nature diary. Connect with the natural world. Take pictures of fall leaves and pick a few to put in your journal. Take pictures of nature. Live in the real world around you and share what you are living and seeing when you are out and about. Note the sky, the weather and the various seasons. Pick a favorite place and take your picture there seasonally.
7. Keep a success log. Write in when you are successful. That great accomplishment at work. Your most profitable day or week. Let your list grow for inspiration.
8. Create a playlist of your favorite music. Let it move you.
9. Share your struggles but share them in third person. This can help you to separate from them and give you renewed perspective.
10. Create your intuition. Write down your thoughts, questions and ideas. If you can’t find the answer, wait for it and then put it in. Listen for the answer.
Everyone has a bad day now and again, black moods, dark days and anxiety. Write through the darkness. In time, you’ll find your inner light and when you do, it have been worthwhile.