Healing Powers of Journaling
Written by Susan Day
Susan lives in country Australia with four dogs, three boss cats, three rescue guinea pigs, and an errant kangaroo. And, apart from blogging, writing and journaling, she loves coffee, painting and boxing.
The Healing Powers of Journaling
Can the Power of Words Heal the Heart and Mind?
Many people who have been through a significant trauma find writing can help them feel better.
In particular, the act of writing in a journal on a regular basis has quite a few advantages that some people may not be aware of.
When you write down your thoughts you get a greater understanding of what you are feeling. Keeping a journal helps you become more mindful, calmer, and gives you the ability to be more focused about what things are troubling you.
Sometimes, however, it is difficult to know where to start when facing a blank piece of paper.
Here are some suggestions to get you started.
You could write about what you see in front of you. What is on your desk or table? What is out the window or on the other side of the door?
You might write a shopping list for the grocery store or what you did during the day.
It doesn’t matter because the act of journaling clears the mind, and helps articulate your issues and concerns. And, once you start the mechanical process of writing your mind will take over and will pour out what it needs to.
You may begin with a list of things for tomorrow’s dinner, for example, but end up writing about a trauma from your past or a recent issue that is bothering you.
Did you know that it also helps you discuss your problems with others?
Let’s say you have an issue with a neighbor. They’ve done something that has upset you and you’re not sure how to approach them. If you rush over yelling you know nothing will be resolved. Instead you want to be able to communicate your concerns to them so you are heard and understood.
You should write about what’s bothering you in your journal detailing how you feel and what happened. Remember you can write whatever you like because your journal is private, and for your eyes only. You don’t have to worry about spelling or grammar errors. You can even rant and swear if that helps because no one is going to read it.
There are many issues we can’t fix ourselves because they are out of our control. This is particularly true when it comes to how other people behave.
When we write down what’s going on in our mind, we can let our logical mind take over and release the stress and tension that can cause us to say the wrong thing.
By expressing how you feel in your journal you’ll be able to speak to your neighbor in a calmer, logical way. Your words won’t be laced with tension or anger. Instead, you’ll come across better because you’re being more reasonable.
Journaling makes you more mindful.
When we are mindful we are able to raise our level of awareness about what is happening around us, and within us at any given moment in time.
Journaling and mindfulness go hand in hand because writing forces you to slow down your thought processes, and be more mindful about your ideas and emotions.
This helps lead you to reach a deeper understanding of what your mind is going through. As well, this can help you gain insights that helps you move forward on your journey towards healing.
When this happens our thoughts quieten down, and our mind becomes clearer.
The moment you pick up your pen, it’s a good idea to take a deep breath and close your eyes.
Once you’ve done this a few times, you’ll find each time you sit down to right your body will automatically go through the same procedure.
You’ll find that once relaxed, your body will sync with your mind and your thoughts and creativity will flow.
In this respect the act of writing has wonderful healing powers. Anyone can do it, and it doesn’t cost much – just the price of a notebook and pen. The power of words, the words you chose to put on paper, can have an amazing impact on helping you along your healing journey.
Susan Day, children’s author and writer. Her blog, Astro’s Adventures Book Club, is full of ideas and tips, for grandparents, parents and teachers to support children in their literacy journey. As well, Susan has created a guide for grandparents who want to build a more meaningful relationship with their grandchildren.
It has helped many people, it could help you, too!