Journaling can help you record your thoughts and process your memories or find self-expression. However, even more importantly, journaling is good for your health. Journaling can help keep your brain healthy by boosting comprehension and memory. Your working memory, in particular, can be increased helping improve overall cognitive processing.
Journaling allows an opportunity to develop and maintain our sense of self solidifying our identity. It also helps us reflect on our experiences and therefore discover our authentic self.
Journaling can:
  • reduce stress
  • lower your blood pressure
  • improve immune functioning
  • boost your mood
  • and strengthen emotional functioning including emotional regulation
It can be simply writing down your feelings and thoughts to help you understand them more clearly. If you struggle with anxiety or depression, or are experiencing a difficult period it can help you understand your emotions by helping you prioritise your problems, concerns and fears.
Journaling  can be an opportunity to identify any uncomfortable feelings or unhealthy behaviours and create an opportunity for positive self-talk.By tracking your thoughts and or symptoms it can help you recognise any triggers allowing opportunity to learn better ways to manage.
If you’re experiencing pain this is also an opportunity to track this and note any patterns or triggers. To help build the habit, keep a pen and paper handy, and try to write daily. You might like to express yourself in prose or drawing. You don’t need to follow a particular structure, this is your own private space to explore and express yourself as authentically as you can.
If you are someone who likes structure and prompts there are journals available to help you e.g. The Resilience Project; Self Journal. In short, journaling is a wonderful tool to be able to understand yourself and what’s happening for you.
Written by:

Cheryl Gale
Psychologist
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