Have you been pondering whether to keep a journal? Perhaps you’ve bought yourself a gorgeous new notebook but are scared to put pen to paper?
Don’t worry – getting started with journaling is by far the most difficult part of the process. Once you get into the swing of things, it will transform your life for the better. As all avid journal-keepers will attest, allowing yourself to unleash thoughts and feelings regularly comes with a host of mental and physical benefits.
So, if you require a little extra motivation to get journaling, we’ve put together a few irresistible benefits below. Remember – journaling doesn’t necessarily have to take the form of a traditional diary. You could create a work journal, an art journal, a food journal, a pet journal, or a travel journal.
So long as you’re documenting meaningful aspects of your life, you will reap significant rewards.
Improved writing or artistic skills
Practice makes perfect, so documenting your thoughts in written or pictorial form every day is a great way to boost your writing or artistic skills. Try not to be a perfectionist. Allowing your ideas to flow will hone your skills more effectively and nurture your creativity. If you’re feeling a little self-conscious, remember that nobody needs to see the results!
Ability to record your best ideas
Have you ever had a great thought while out and about, only to forget it hours later? By carrying a small thought journal around with you, you can ensure none of your genius ideas goes to waste!
Stronger communication skills
Journaling represents a safe and effective way of learning to express your feelings and communicate better with other people. Writing down issues regarding a certain relationship, for example, will force you to think logically about the origin of the problems and what to do about them. When it comes to addressing these issues with the person in question, you’ll find yourself better able to communicate calmly and constructively.
An improved memory
Writing something down boosts the chances that you will remember it. Writing regularly, therefore, could improve your brain’s ability to make strong connections and boost your memory.
Motivation for achieving your goals
When our dreams and aspirations stay safely nestled in the back of our minds, we feel less driven to achieve them. By documenting your goals in a journal, you can record your progress and motivate yourself to reach them. You could even promise yourself certain rewards for passing certain milestones.
Documenting any pent-up anxieties or frustrations is a highly effective form of stress relief. Don’t censor yourself when you need to vent. Write in a stream-of-consciousness style or paint something wild, free, and outrageously colorful. Your journal is like an old friend – it will listen to you when times are tough and help lift your spirits.
Improved capacity for self-reflection
If you have a hectic life, it’s all too easy to get caught up in minor problems at work or take on too many familial responsibilities. Journaling can help you to pause for a moment and reflect on your life and relationships with others. You may come to realize that you need a little more time to pursue personal projects, or you may recognize how grateful you are for having certain people in your life.
An outlet for creativity
If you’re a creative person with a demanding, technical job, you may feel frustrated by a lack of opportunities to unleash your inner artist. Journaling is a great way to turn this around and allow your imagination to run wild.
A stronger immune system
Amazingly, studies have shown that journaling helps to strengthen the immune system and could play a vital role in treating common disorders such as asthma and arthritis. Physical health and mental health are closely related, so giving structure to your worries is a great way to come to terms with them and boost your chances of overcoming an illness.
Are you convinced of the benefits of keeping a journal? Check out the post on how to start a journal for more inspiration.