Too many thoughts inside your head, troubles to come, regrets over the past. Maybe you can’t sleep.
You just wish it would all stop.
As someone who tends to worry too much, think too much, I am often burdened by the thoughts that arise through the day. They all swirl around in my head, leading to a lack of focus, anxiety, and fatigue.
I write a personal journal, not everyday, but just as and when I feel the need to. Also during the day I use a notebook to write down my thoughts, ideas, emails and so on, as they occur. So I can write them up later.
What I have learned is how useful it is to write the important stuff down, it helps to get it out of my mind. I can pay no more attention to it, and instead focus more on what I was doing, or coming up with more ideas.
Trying to remember all the things I want or need, along with all the turmoil and stress that can come with it, can leave me exhausted and demoralised.
Writing it all down can really make help you feel more relaxed.
How journal writing can help
Reduction of Stress and Anxiety
Troubles can go around and around in our head, in a constant repetitive loop. By writing it down you can break that loop, and clear your mind.
Having trouble sleeping because of your worries? Journalling can help here. Get out of bed, write down your thoughts and feelings until you can’t write anymore, then go back bed. If it fails to work, thoughts still keep coming, repeat the process. Then you will find yourself waking up the next day.
By writing your thoughts and ideas down you can gain a greater understanding of what is troubling you. By not being locked up in worry you can now focus on creating solutions to the problems your mind was troubled with. It makes it easier to filter and prioritise tasks, and in so doing become more efficient with your time.
It also allows you to see your own reasoning, making it easier to spot flaws or errors, and in so doing promoting better decision making.
Big Picture Thinking
By writing all your ideas down, you can now look at them collectively. Seeing connections, commonalities, themes, and patterns. This allows you to grasp a project or a problem from a greater perspective, which help find greater clarity and understanding.
By writing the journey down you can track the progress of your life, the projects or tasks have going. Also, you can get some idea of where to go next, further still it also helps you learn from past mistakes.
Whenever you feel demoralised, that you can’t seem to succeed, you can look back and see evidence of your accomplishments. You can see how far you have come, congratulate yourself on obstacles overcome and rejoice that you have made a difference.
Looking back over past journal entries can bring back a lot of memories.
Past journals I feel can help you remember the good times, and remind us that we can overcome problems, and look at the bad moments with the perspective that time can bring. It also marks important events in your life, so you can say to yourself, that you have lived life, instead of just drifting through it.
Journalling helps you to understand yourself a lot better by looking back through the past, and seeing patterns of thought and behaviour. It gives some idea of what matters to you, where you excel, and where you struggle. It helps because journalling requires conscious reflection, something in this modern fast paced world many of us fail to do.
In putting thoughts into words it helps to better understand your own mind, and accurately express it to others.
Also I have noted, this writing down of thoughts can lead to greater creativity. Once I start writing I find it just keeps going. Because you are no longer focused on the same ideas, the same thought repetitively. Writing them down leads one idea to another and so on. Soon you will have a lots of ideas and thoughts down on paper. So the more you write the more you create.
“All art is a reaction to the first line drawn. Unless the artist sits in front of the canvas and paints, there can be no art… unless one acts, nothing is created or discovered” – Michael Michalko
Retention of Ideas
Journalling helps you remember ideas, since memory, is fallible, and even that act of writing something down can help remember it. We can learn faster by writing down concepts in our own words.
Writing a journal is one of the best habits I have adopted. Through writing I feel far less stressed, I get to see how my own life is playing out and make better decisions for the future.
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Image credit: Ferli Achirulli / 123RF Stock Photo