You might have kept a journal as a teenager just for fun, and it might be time to get back at it again. Experts say it improves mental health and boosts your mood. However, it is easier said than done.
If you try to open your journal just to end up staring at a blank page, well, you are not the only one. To help you get back into journaling and reap its many benefits, we share tips to follow.
Make it a habit
Doing something every day or regularly turns it into a habit. If you want journaling to be a part of your daily routine, you should try committing to writing down your thoughts every day. It can be for a few minutes before going to bed or whenever you need a break during your busy day. You will find this practice soothing enough to want to repeat it every day.
Choose the right setting
While you can take your journal out any time and anywhere you like, it is better to find the right place and time to start jotting down your thoughts.
You can sit on your porch every night or at your desk with a candle burning beside you. Whatever setting you choose must be relaxing and peaceful enough for you to be able to write with no interruptions or distractions.
Journaling doesn’t have to look a certain way to make sense. When you start filling out those pages, don’t put too much thought into how they must look. You can write a paragraph and then decide that a to-do list is necessary or you can even write about what goes on in your mind using bullet points and drawings.
Remember that your journal is your own personal world that is shaped just the way you want it, so write openly and don’t let your thoughts restrict you.
Set a time limit
If you know that once you get to writing you will get sucked into it and the next thing you know you will have filled 10 pages, then it might be better to set a time limit for yourself.
You can start with 5-10 minutes a day when you forget about the outside world and dive into your writing activity. You can then work your way up to 20 minutes of mindful relaxation a day.
The important thing is never to force yourself to write. It should come naturally and must bring you joy rather than stress.
The benefits of journaling
Studies have proven that journaling in all its shapes and forms helps improve memory, reduces levels of anxiety and depression and boosts the immune system.
Since journaling is a safe way to let out all your frustration and bottled-up feelings, it is considered to be an amazing stress relief and mood booster.
It can also help you improve your confidence and identify negative patterns in your life so you can put a stop to them. It is a healthy way to let out strong emotions that you have been struggling to cope with.
Keeping a journal can also serve as a safe for your cherished memories which you can come back to anytime you are craving a little nostalgia.
Any time you practise it, journaling is the perfect way to unwind, relax and set your thoughts free. Start today and enjoy the peace that comes with this amazingly soothing activity.