For the past three years I have kept a journal. It has ranged from daily gratitude lists, to half-completed poetry and everything in between. I now have a daily journaling practice that incorporates various mediums that I find evocative and appealing. Journaling is a meditative practice, a mechanical motion of repeatedly pressing pen to paper. No matter what you choose to write down, the health benefits range widely from cognitive and physical improvements.
I know what you’re thinking– I just don’t have time to journal. Believe me, I get it. In the same vein, if you have to force it — just don’t do it! The entire purpose of any self care practice is to enhance your joy and enjoyment of your time with yourself. Whether than means yoga, going for a drive, a trip to the beach or just McDonald’s, you have to follow your gut instinct. However, if you want your self care practices to also feed you in meeting long terms development goals, it is helpful to incorporate some practices that create & foster positive advancement in yourself.
Journaling is an accessible way to reflect as well as potentially creating a beautiful artifact of your life. If you don’t want to save what you write, just burn it or dispose of it in another fashion. The simple act of dedicating alone time for yourself to thoughtfully transfer your thoughts onto paper is enough to provide you with a variety of health benefits.
If you’re interested in learning more of the specifics, Laura Rubin discusses these proven health advantages in her journaling workshop which was hosted on the Goop YouTube channel at the end of July. She also assists viewers in guided journaling prompts to help get over some of the initial writer’s block. I highly recommend the class as a self-care break that may just turn you onto a new healthy habit. You can check that video out here: https://youtu.be/ayzlmYVA9vY
These past few months I have been focused on setting intentions and imagining what I want my life to look like someday. One specific journaling exercise that I have been doing frequently is transcribing these manifestations in my notebook. I allow myself to relax and daydream– picturing myself years into the future, living my absolute ideal life. I write about this life as if I am already living it, “I am… I live… I spend my time doing…” I claim these things for myself, having absolute faith that these intentions will be fulfilled in a way the universe determines to be most rewarding.
I use journaling as an essential tool to take introspective time for myself, allowing my thoughts to ebb and flow without the usual resistance and distractions. I allow myself the freedom to explore and impress upon the page whatever interests me in the moment. Lately, though my wrist has been aching from the increased wear and tear of typing and writing all day. However, this hasn’t hindered my journaling process too much– now I make an effort to type out my longer journal entries / passages I wish to quote, and I then print and paste them into my journal. Usually alongside, I’ll handwrite smaller phrases or notes I wish to remember. I encourage you to explore this potential for unlimited hybridity within your own journal– adapting to the resources and abilities at your disposal.
If you have the time and the desire to take up a journaling practice then know the process you develop for journaling is completely unique to you and there is literally no wrong way to do it. Any way of doing it that you find to be worthwhile is worthwhile, simply because you’re taking the time to get to know yourself a little better. This curiosity of the self is greatest motivation for journaling of all.
Goop Image sourced from: https://youtu.be/ayzlmYVA9vY
Second Image sourced from Pinterest, Artist: Liana Jegers
Cover Image sourced from: https://www.okchicas.com/curiosidades/creatividad/ideas-hacer-aupntes-obra-de-arte/ Artist: unknown