Self-care is an important part of any mental health plan. A lot of things can be done in your life to improve upon your self-care, and there is plenty of evidence to suggest that keeping a personal journal can result in strong mental health improvement. Let’s look at a few of the benefits, and briefly look at how to start your own journal.
Being able to keep track of your experiences is the most key benefit to journaling. By doing so, you can tell in a concrete fashion how you were feeling on a particular day, and organise any thoughts that might be jumbled. Linking into that, by expressing those thoughts in a journal, they can become clear and visible, as opposed to keeping them purely internal. For those with intrusive thoughts, for example, journals can be a strong outlet to releasing those thoughts in a very final fashion, marking them down with a possibly literal stroke of a pen, improving on one’s mental wellness. Here are some benefits.
Another key benefit is that by journaling, you enhance your creative instinct, and can focus that creativity in a positive manner. The old phrase goes that there is always a silver lining even on a gloomy day, and journals can help you find that silver lining. You might not have noticed these silver linings before, but by having a routine of focusing on what happened during the day, that focus can give light to new ideas or insights, which can be extremely valuable to your goals.
Whilst there are many more benefits to journals, the final one we want to touch on in this article is that there is an indication scientifically that there are physical benefits, as well as psychological ones. For example, there have been studies suggesting immune system strengthening, blood pressure reduction and an increase in sleep quality, all as physical benefits from journaling.
How to start a journal
The first rule to journaling is that there are no set rules or guidelines. The intention is to provide yourself with the opportunity to recount your experiences and doesn’t even necessarily need to be with a pen and paper. If you are musically or artistically inclined, using those mediums, or whatever medium suits you best, is just as effective. Start small, but consistently; ensure that you journal regularly on a schedule, to ensure that you get into a rhythm. If you need to, pick a theme for a given period of time, and from there, use that as a catalyst for your journals, but as said, not necessarily rigidly!
There are countless benefits to starting a journal for mindfulness and mental health, so we’d definitely recommend considering it. The benefits are both mental and physical, with starting a journal as easy as just deciding to. We’ve just scratched the surface on this topic, so if you have any questions, get in touch with us today.