This post inspired Episode 12 of the Everyday Confidence Podcast
Should I start a Journal?
I recently wrote an article, where I suggested that keeping a journal, was an incredible thing to do. It can improve not only your confidence but your life generally.
I’ve since been sent a few emails asking what exactly the benefits are, to writing a personal journal. Especially when it probably won’t be seen by anyone else…ever! And also, “how do I get started?”
Well, actually the benefits of Journaling are immense, so I thought I’d give you some of the most common.
Whatever your reasons for being here, I’m sure you’ll find at least one to make it worth your while.
So, today we’ll dip into some of the reasons to keep a journal. And specifically, how it can help you to cope with everyday life.
The majority of people keep a journal so that they can get things out of their head.
Whether they’re starting a new job, getting divorced, etc. they’ve got somewhere safe to express their feelings and thoughts.
For me, I wanted a way of recording my thoughts, problems, and resolutions when I started a new business.
Everyone makes mistakes and the best way to deal with those mistakes is to get them down on paper. Then you can analyze why something didn’t work and develop a better strategy for next time.
In the beginning, most journals tend to just consist of single thoughts. Generally, more like a list of ideas and problems than anything else. Another issue in the beginning, could well be that you can’t find the time to do it every day.
How should I go about it?
The benefits of journaling get significantly better when you make the commitment to do it every day, even if you only write a small entry.
When I found myself in that position, I decided that if I was going to do it, I needed to do it properly. From that point on, I promised myself that I would write in my journal for at least 15 minutes every evening, even if I had nothing to say.
That was when I really noticed the power of it.
From the people I’ve spoken to, one of the top ways to make writing easier is to treat the journal like it was a trusted friend. Then, each day you write to them to catch them up on the day’s activities.
Once you begin to write regularly, you’ll find that what started out as a struggle begins to be therapeutic. Like anything, the more often you do it, the easier it becomes.
When you share how problems from the day made you feel with your‘friend’, it can be extremely satisfying. When you then go on to describe how you intend to make it better, the confidence in your abilities goes up.
It’s surprisingly empowering to spill your thoughts onto paper without worrying that there may be consequences to you thinking that way. You can shout and scream through your pen and come out the other side calm, resolute, and fully restored. No one gets hurt and sometimes you get a whole new view on the subject.
Writing things down gives you a great deal of clarity and allows you the opportunity to logically think through a solution, or next move.
The best thing about writing in a journal is that you set the rules. You can write as much, or as little as you like and nobody’s going to complain to you about it!
So, here are ten great therapeutic reasons for starting a journal……..
- It helps you to focus your thoughts.
- It reduces your stress level.
- You can track your progress toward your confidence goals.
- You can write about your inner-most thoughts and desires.
- It’s a place you can do all of your complaining, and not worry that someone’s going to be upset with you!
- It allows you to learn more about yourself.
- You can write down all of your tasks and projects and the journal will keep you accountable.
- It’s somewhere safe to face your fears
- It saves you paying for a therapist!
- You can look back over time and see how much you’ve grown.
These are just a few of the reasons for starting your own journey into journaling.
As for how to start a journal, the best advice I can give you is to check out this page from the ‘Center for Journal Therapy‘.
So, if you think you’ll start your own journal in the new year, or even if you don’t think a journal is for you, let me know either way in the comments, below 🙂
Until next time, be your best!