Your Company Appalogue

The health benefits of journaling



It’s no secret that writing is good for the health. It’s been scientifically proven to positively contribute to keeping stress in check. Lately, there’s been much talk about healthy habits related to writing, such as taking a few minutes before bedtime every day to make a mental or yet better written list of negative thoughts, to get rid of them, as well as a list of positive things, to practice gratitude. This habit is supposed to help unwind and allow for a better night’s sleep. We could add other examples such as writing a letter to one’s inner child, writing to cope with trauma, the pros of writing are many.

 



Now, you might be hesitant to give it a try because you feel like writing is for writers only, just like drawing is for artists only—we’ve all been guilty of thinking such limiting thoughts. But, isn’t it as silly as saying that dancing is for dancers only? In fact, the reason why writing has such positive effects on the state of the mind and soul is probably tied to the fact that it’s, when practiced right, an art of letting go.

If you write just for the sake and art of it, you might not achieve the blissful sense of relaxation and quiet which writing in the journaling acception of the word can bring. If you are after the perfect choice of words and most elaborate sentence you are missing the point completely. Writing to soothe a running mind is about facing a blank page (or screen) judgment free and letting the pen (or keyboard) taking the lead. The idea is to let your train of thoughts (what some novelists might call the stream of consciousness) feed your writing without second guessing it. The end goal isn’t so much what you write, but how you write it.

As a result, re-reading your journals isn’t something which we would recommend doing right after submitting a new diary entry, but rather after a long period of time, when the contemplation of your past writing might bring about some sort of perceptiveness about past events or feelings. But really, bare in mind, that writing for journaling isn’t so much a reflective practice but more of an instinctive one. It is only when you surrender to this approach that what you write might be telling, otherwise it will just be a projection of your ego and will do more harm than good.

From relieving stress to increasing focus, improving memory and mental clarity, the benefits of journaling which we've discussed today should be diversified enough to encourage you to give it a try, today.


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