The many ways to Journal

When journaling is prescribed in therapy it is often met with resistance. “I’ve tried that….I don’t know what to write…I can’t write that much….I never can find the time…” All valid feelings on the topic. It might be helpful to break down the different ways and different kinds of journaling that are available to you. Please note, if there is another way you find is helpful to you, continue with what you are already doing. The first step is deciding whether you like paper and pen or something digital. Some people like the feel of the paper between their fingers and being able to easily flip through the pages; it feels more tangible. While others find it more efficient to do things on the computer or through an app. It all comes down to preference. Once you’e decided the initial medium you would like to use, it is now time to discuss what can go in the journal. There are various ways to journal. One way to journal is to free write. What this means, is that you write down anything and everything that comes to the top of your mind. Some people find it helpful to set a timer while doing this so that it does not feel like an endless task. Another way to journal is to track your moods throughout the week. This is especially important if you are having periods of time where you are feeling more up and down in terms of your mood and are having a hard time identifying what the root cause is. Other people make lists each day and find this satisfying especially to ease any anxiety that may be creeping up. Journaling can be two lines or two pages. The act of journaling simply needs to be intentional whether it is five minutes or fifty. The real benefit of journaling is in the ability to reflect. If you journal each day in isolation, while that may be cathartic, it is the ability to view your timeline of events that really helps piece your world together that is useful. If you have any journaling ideas that have helped you please share them in the comment section below!

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