Journaling Therapy

Growing up, words have always been my passion. I collected notebook after notebook and journal after journal, filling each with my thoughts, dreams and all the quirky moments of my life. In happy times and in sad, I was always scribbling something to find comfort and direction. These days, I still do find joy in words and I’ve realised that journaling has amazing benefits to help through mentally tough situations. 

Everybody has their own preference when it comes to journaling: some like to use it to plan their schedules while others simply like to doodle and write down their thoughts. I’ve used my journals for almost everything from art to documenting my travels and it has brought me clarity in so many ways. So, here I would like to share some of the benefits of journaling and how it can help you better understand your emotions. 

Consider your journal a little retreat for your mind: a place you go to simply say how you feel and let your guard down. You can write about anything from your current life situation to your future ambitions. Once you feel inspired, grab your pen and let it take you on a journey of self-discovery.

  1. 1. Write what you feel

    By writing about your emotions, it becomes a lot easier to identify certain thought patterns. We often become so wrapped up in the stresses of our daily lives that we tend to neglect our emotions and as a result we can find it difficult to not only acknowledge them but also to express them. When certain emotions keep arising, it’s a lot easier to identify why you keep feeling that way if you have a record to reflect upon.

  2. 2. Tell the truth

    If you’re a very private person who struggles to share personal details with others, then journaling is a good way to share your personal life. Sometimes admitting the truth to ourselves is difficult, but I find that it’s so liberating to just say it like it is without the worry of sounding strange.

    grey book
  3. 3. Discover the real you

    What makes you happy? What’s that secret dream you’ve always had? By keeping a journal, you can stumble upon things that you hadn’t really thought of before. You can answer questions that you never really asked otherwise. It’s like going on a date with yourself and getting to know yourself from scratch.

  4. 4. When in doubt, sketch it out

    If words don’t come easily and the idea of writing essay-long reflections bores you, grab a pencil and draw something instead. You don’t need to have the most refined artistic abilities to draw how you feel. Create doodles or mind-maps of the thoughts occupying your mind and soon you’ll find yourself more relaxed and, who knows, you might stumble upon a hidden creative talent.

    Art class

So grab that pen and get going! Here are just a few prompts to get you started:

  • What’s your favourite quote? Why? 
  • Reflect on your day today. What made you happy?
  • Draw up a 5-year plan with a few things you would like to achieve (remember to be reasonable).
  • Reflect on your life a year ago. How have you changed? What have you learned since then? 
  • List 3 things you admire about yourself.

Happy writing!