7 Ways Daily Journaling Can Change Your Outlook on Life
Do you live in a constant state of mental clarity and complete satisfaction? If you’re like most modern humans, the answer is a resounding no.
The truth is, for most of us, life goes by in a blur. We’re so busy with the hustle and bustle of the daily grind that one day we look around and wonder how the heck we got to where we are. Our greatest highs and lows are buried under a constant stream of distractions until they become nothing but a distant memory.
Committing to a daily journaling practice empowers you to tell your life story in a way only you can. It gives you an outlet to document your daily successes and struggles, your ambitions, insights, fears, and revelations. Journaling allows you to tune into who you really are and recognize life’s hidden lessons.
Here are seven more ways the power of journaling can literally change your entire life.
1. Helps You Connect with Your Values and Beliefs
When you’re busy trying to make it through the struggle of everyday life, it’s easy to lose focus on who you really are. Keeping a daily personal journal is the clearest path to self-discovery and finding your own identity.
Whether you’re struggling with a specific situation or just feel the need to reconnect with your core values, your private journal gives you a safe outlet to do just that.
2. Allows You to Clear Your Mental Clutter
Getting your thoughts and feelings out of your mind and into your journal frees up space for other mental tasks. It allows you to see things more clearly and create a manageable “to do” list.
Organizing and analyzing your thoughts on paper gives your mind a chance to relax. This allows you to handle stress more effectively and may even help combat anxiety and depression.
3. Gives You Greater Clarity
Journaling improves mental clarity and allows you to see both the big picture and tiny details you might otherwise have missed. If you find that something or someone is robbing you of your happiness, you may come to the painful realization that you need to make a change. Other times, taking a deeper dive into the situation will help you see that you’re overreacting or contributing to the issue.
When you’re feeling confused or overly emotional, personal journal writing can take you on an exploration and help you find the root of the problem. Only once you understand what’s truly going on can you devise a plan to set things right.
4. Inspires Creativity
We live in a time when we’re constantly bombarded with input. When we wake up in the morning, we immediately hop onto our phones, checking email and social media. Every spare minute of our days is filled with TV, radio, Facebook, Instagram, and more. We’ve allowed ourselves to constantly live by an agenda that others have created.
We’re so busy consuming and reacting to information that we stifle our own creative outputs. Journaling gives us a chance to use our imaginations, express what’s in our hearts, and find a piece of ourselves that we may have forgotten was even there.
5. Creates a Productive Inner Dialogue
If you’re an introvert, you probably have an inner dialogue going on in your head all the time. You’re constantly evaluating situations and applying your own insight to what’s happening around you. Journal writing does essentially the same thing, giving everyone the chance to have conversations with themselves and gain valuable insight.
Re-reading your journal entries from time to time can help you recognize patterns in your life and give you a unique understanding of yourself. You can also use positive journaling to silence your inner-critic and re-frame your thoughts.
6. Helps You Achieve Your Goals
Let’s face it, achieving our goals isn't easy. We often start with good intentions, but then life gets in the way and we lose focus on why our goals were important to us in the first place. Journaling helps you bridge that space between who you are and who you strive to be.
When you use your journal to write about your goals, they become more real to you. The more time you spend thinking about your goals, visualizing what your life will be like once you get there, and figuring out ways to make it happen, the more likely you are to achieve them.
Write about your goals each day and they’ll become a part of your subconscious mind. Allow your mind to become consumed with the prospect of your future, and you’ll manifest your new reality.
7. Gives You Closure
Journaling at the end of each day helps you gain closure and set yourself up for a successful morning. Take a few moments to review what you’ve accomplished, the things that went well, and what you could have done better. If there are things that are bothering you or that you need to remember, write them down. This allows you to release the thoughts from your mind, so they don’t disrupt your ability to sleep.
No matter how your day went, close it out by taking a moment to express gratitude. Search your mind until you can find at least one good thing that you’re thankful for. Sometimes it could be that you have a warm bed, a roof over your head, or that you’re still alive. Whatever it is, know that it’s enough and tomorrow is a new day filled with promise.
Some Final Thoughts
If you haven't started journaling yet, there's no time like the present. The most important thing to remember is that there's no right or wrong way to go about it. Simply sit down with a pen and paper (or your laptop) and let your thoughts pour out.
You have a story to tell, whether you think you do or not. Take the opportunity to connect with yourself and you'll be amazed at how your life begins to change.
Have you started a daily journaling practice?
Have you experienced benefits from daily journaling, or struggled with starting the habit? I would love to hear your stories! Please share your comments below.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2018 Beth Deyo