Journaling, in its most basic form, is the act of keeping a written account of your thoughts and feelings of the events occurring in your life. But journaling is so much more than that.
Journaling is a vessel to explore one’s emotions, a way to channel difficult feelings and a way to create a healthy and creative outcome for our daily events. If you don’t journal, here is why you should.
Your journal becomes a time capsule.
As you grow older, no matter your health, memories fade. You might remember the big milestones of your life such as graduating college or getting married. But will you remember that time you and your friend stayed up all night watching Marvel movies, eating pizza and talking about life?
Your journal then becomes your reference to remember not just the huge moments throughout your life but the little day-to-day laughs.
Writing helps you think through critical problems.
Allowing your thoughts to flow freely from your mind to the page will allow you to guide yourself to the answer that you may need. It gives you time to reflect on the issues at school, work or in your relationships.
Coming to fully understand these issues will allow you to apply a critical level of thinking to any future issues that you may face.
A journal requires you to write your goals and hold yourself accountable.
When setting goals, it is so important to commit yourself to paper. Writing your goals down also allows you to articulate them accurately and makes them more tangible.
It sounds so simple, but the journal allows you to remind yourself of the goals day after day without them changing. It allows you to annotate the goals on how to achieve them and after completion, you can satisfyingly cross them off the list.
Writing before bed can help you to fall asleep.
It might seem counterproductive to add another step into your bedtime ritual, but writing in your journal before bed can help you sleep. Most people blame worrying thoughts and life stresses for the reason they cannot get a peaceful night’s sleep.
But if you could write down all of those worries, you might spend less time laying in bed thinking about them. Writing them down can help them to be structured and help you find an answer to the issue you are facing.
Tips to keep a good journal:
1. Find a media that you are comfortable with. Whether that be paper and pen, a word document on your laptop or the notes app on your phone.
2. Commit to a writing schedule. It does not have to be every day but commit to at least once a week and try for more.
3. Show you care about the content of your writing, not how you write it. Ignore perfect grammar and sentence structure and just allow your thoughts to flow freely.
4. Explore and try different methods of journal writing like using prompts, bullet points and lists.
Most importantly keep your writing simple, ignore mistakes and don’t stress about it.
If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com.
Skyler Weber is a third-year student majoring in biochemistry with a minor in biology.