As a child or teenager, we may have written a diary about our secrets or stories of our best activities or experiences. Writing a diary is a form of journaling and you can apply this journaling habit until you grow up.
You need to know that journaling has many benefits, especially for mental health. Many people journal to simply express feelings to overcome stress.
Definition of Journaling
Journaling or journal writing is one of the activities carried out to express ideas, thoughts, in the form of writing and images, both manually and digitally.
In this journaling activity, you can also write down all your activities, dreams, goals, and positive words for yourself. And according to research, journaling has many benefits, especially for reducing stress.
According to research from Dr. Elizabeth Gilbert, journaling activities can actually reduce feelings of anxiety, depression, trauma, to help us set goals. Other studies have also shown that journaling for 10 to 20 minutes a day can lower blood pressure and help improve liver function.
The Benefits of Journaling For Mental Health
When we are stressed or our minds are distracted, there are many things you can do to overcome it, one of which is journaling. Maybe there are still many people who don't know the benefits of journaling.
For this reason, this article will discuss the various benefits of journaling for our mental health.
- Managing Stress
Feelings of stress can certainly be experienced by everyone, regardless of age, gender, or profession. We can't really get rid of stress. However, what we humans can do is manage stress well. That way, the feeling of stress will not interfere with our activities.
When you feel stressed, you can try journaling. For some people, journaling can help the mind relax. That's because, when writing journaling, you release all your creativity in a piece of writing. That overflow of creativity helps relieve negative feelings that can trigger stress.
- Controlling Emotions
The second benefit of journaling is that it can help control emotions. Sometimes we often have difficulty controlling emotions.
By doing journaling, you can express feelings and emotions in writing. In the writing process, you can also digest what triggers your emotions. That way, you can find a solution to your own problem.
- Expressing Feelings
We may often have difficulty in expressing the feelings we are experiencing. Sometimes we want to be angry, but can't express our anger at that time. On the other hand, we also feel happy but cannot show that happiness.
To overcome this, you can do journaling activities. Through these activities you can freely express your feelings in a healthy way. You can start writing down all the feelings you are experiencing at that time. That way, you don't have to pretend to hide your feelings.
- Helps Recognize Yourself
Due to the busyness of our daily activities, lifestyle, and social interactions, sometimes it makes us forget our own identity, goals, and needs.
Here, journaling can help us to be more connected with ourselves. When writing a journal, we will feel like we are listening to ourselves. We try to give input to the events that we experience and so on.
Usually, when writing a journal, we also get to know ourselves better. We know what we don't like, what we like, and so on.
- Reducing Symptoms of Depression
If earlier it was explained that journaling can help deal with stress, then another benefit of journaling is reducing symptoms of depression. To get the benefits, you can start writing regularly for 30 days or more.
How to Maximize the Benefits of Journaling
Of course, to get the benefit of something, we need to do it right, so does journaling. Here are some ways you can maximize the benefits of journaling:
- Choose the journaling method that you prefer, such as writing, drawing, typing, or voice recording
- Express all your expressions when journaling. You don't have to think about having to write in the correct language or spelling
- When journaling, write down 3 little things you can be grateful for at that time. It makes you appreciate everything that you experience more and of course can give you positive energy
- Make journaling a part of your daily activity
Journaling is not just a writing activity, but it turns out to be much more than that. The benefits of journaling itself will help make positive changes in us.
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