Everyone who has kept a personal journal knows that writing is a therapeutic process that helps integrate seemingly unconnected life events. Some believe the process works because the physical act of writing (using your hand-eye coordination) occupies your left brain, leaving your right brain free to access emotions, intuit connections, and create new insights.
How else can journaling help?
1. Journaling reduces stress by getting “monkey mind” thoughts out of your head. Mind chatter is a powerful stressor, stressor is a powerful health-buster, and journaling the chatter is a proven chatter-buster.
2. Writing about problems gives your right brain food for creative problem-solving. It’s amazing what happens when the creative part of your nature starts working on a problem—you’ll soon find solutions bubbling up from your subconscious.
3. Keeping a daily diary is one of the best techniques for discovering patterns, particularly those that are self-defeating. For example, a diary kept over the course of several months will clearly show any reoccurring difficulties like overeating, stress eating, poor (but similar) choices in relationships.
4. Want to better know yourself? Journal. Writing can help clarify your thoughts, your emotions, and your reactions to certain people or situations. In addition, as you read back through past journals, you’ll have ample evidence of the things that make you happy and those that are distressful.
5. Journaling can help clarify events, problems, or options. When you’re beset with a mind full of fuzzy, disconnected thoughts flitting here and there, writing about the event or issue will help bring focus and clarity. It will also help you decide on which action to take, or option to choose.