Journaling is therapeutic.
“I can’t believe someone I call a friend would always write down all the times she’s been offended, I’m shocked to say the least” a friend had blurted in the heat of a disagreement.
And there I had to explain to her what I meant by ‘writing in my diary’ before I could properly process conflict.
Journaling is a hobby I learnt from my father.
“I had seen your face just as it now long before you were born and I described in my journal that year” he would often say.
He writes his dreams- I mean the one we have when we sleep together with his dreams & goals and ticks them off as soon as they come into reality.
At times, he would search his shelf for the diary he had 10 years back to check for something.
I can also remember my mum, about 4 years ago sent a note I had written with my apologies when I was about 15 and it just had me in smiles.
I started journaling about 10 years years ago following the traumatic experience I had when I newly got into medical school. I remember always writing in the journal my daily experiences amidst tears.
Journaling could take on several forms, each after figuring what is mostly convenient for you as a person.
Could be a soft copy format on our devices or a hard copy note. Now is also the choice of recording your voice. I actually use the combination of the aforementioned two.
My hard copy earlier in the day and later at night & my phone during the day.
It has so much evolved for me, each form with its doting goodness.
Here are ways journaling has been of help to me and I think can do same for you.
1)Tracking goals and dreams: Clichey maybe but invaluable.
Every year, I write my vision board and check at intervals to see if I am living up to it. It has held me accountable in numerous ways. Hard a few times but I think l love it still.
And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.
For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
2) Planning , Scheduling & Reminding.
Planning my day is something I sometime create at the beginning of the day to help with time management and sieve out frivolities.
I slack out sometimes but I tell you it could have been worse without planning.
Again, it reminds me of important dates in history. For example, the day I got saved- June 19 2011, it was a Sunday & many other dates in history.
Like it is said, the faintest ink is better than the sharpest memory.
Biblical dates of events and history could have been wrong without journaling by men that lived at the time and queried in this dispensation- who knows!
I schedule dates I am going to reach out to people to check up and also plan my financial spending for the month.
This has certainly helped in living a more organized life and will help you with same if you will consider.
Having a journal has bolstered this by encouraging me to always fill my journal leaving no spaces. I’m usually not happy to see gaps left of days I couldn’t have a wholesome devotion, courtesy of waking up late or being on call(as a Doctor). This usually prompts me to still create time at work to have it properly and transfer to my diary when home. Writing down also brings lessons to my sight & helps me to pray there and then.
It has also consistently helped me to see how God relates with me and how I should respond to him.
Randomly flipping through my diary reminds me of my failures and victories.
I’m always reminded of who I was before and who I am now and how I have grown through the years.
Reminds me of answered prayers and in all spurs a heart of gratitude, thanking God for the present phase while hoping for a better tomorrow.
4) Helps in self awareness and personal development.
Oftentimes, before sleeping at night, I go through the events of the day then make a note of what I think I did well and where I did otherwise and how I can move forward from there subsequently.
I also do not fail to learn from the experiences of others.
“Your Journal is like your bestfriend, You don’t have to pretend with it, you can be honest and write exactly how you feel”
– Bukola Ogunwale
I write my thoughts and it has provided clarity on who I am, highlighting my strength & weaknesses and how I can reinforce , develop and harness them to becoming the best. Through journaling, I am also able to recognize my needs and how they can be met in the right way. Altogether this has improved my self confidence still knowing well that I’ve got the capacity to be better.
5) Improving emotional and mental health
Writing is therapeutic
It is a good way of easing stress. Through journaling, I can identify, name, sieve and process my emotions in a safe space and this inevitably creates a safe harbor for my mental health.
“Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about. Be willing to be split open.” — Natalie Goldberg
6) Resolving conflict & improving communication skills
Journaling is a space that holds no lies for me – Awolehin Gloria
There, I honestly review what went wrong, what I could have done differently and how I could have done it differently.
It is usually overwhelming having all these conversations solely in my head and writing down in my diary is always a breathe of fresh air.
You might want to read this WHAT ABOUT CONFLICT RESOLUTION?
Makes me review constructively, not sabotaging my feelings and at the same time creating a safe space for the feelings & thought process of the other party. This by extension has improved my communication skills.
As a creative, journaling sets a good environment to tweak your your imaginations to the best it can be.
It gives room to see your thoughts clearly, edit and make better each time.
Putting your ideas & thoughts down right there brings your imaginations a step closer to reality
I am sure every creative can relate to this, so keep up at it.
Everyone needs to practice gratitude.
Any one living, is on a journey of personal development which would be nice to track.
You actually do not have to be a writer or a creative to own a journal. It offers more benefits that you’d certainly realize once you start off.
You could download a note pad on your device if that works better for you
Or you could get a hard copy journal.
As the year ends and another unveils in a few days, a journal is an invaluable need I’d encourage you to get.
Let me know in the comments if you are encouraged to start journaling.
Compliments of the season, wishing you with one filled with love.