Benefits of writing in a journal
The benefits of writing in a journal are fairly well established due to the long history of journal writing.
When considering the benefits of journal writing, some of the wonderful aspects of writing is there’s no age limit to using a journal. There are many benefits for children of all ages, as well as adults. Whether it is a teenager reflecting on the social ups and downs of high school, young adult jotting down thoughts from work, a parent taking a few minutes at night to write about important family moments or grandparent reflecting the how the world has changed. Writing in a journal has more benefits than just stepping back for a few moments in life and reflecting, you can gain much more.
I throw ideas out into the open when I really should just be writing them down in a journal. ~Dan DeaconClick to tweet
The Joy of Writing in a Journal
Writing is healthy for the heart and soul. Some of us may think of journaling as reserved only for our childhood and teenage years when we kept a diary or journal. In those books of blank pages, the writer would fill the pages as they express their thought on the day’s events. Each page might have recorded the anger or joys, good or bad events, the agreements or disagreements. It was a way for us to heal our hearts when love past us by, and a friend to talk to (write to) when love filled our heart back again. When we were young it was a fun way to chronicle our daily adventures. But what some of us have forgotten, it is as important today as it was then, because today our journals will benefit us as it did back then. Writing in a journal still, aids our healing process, releases some stress and will take us to a place where we can spend a little more time reflecting and embracing the wondrous joys of life.
All that is needed is a pen and paper. Simply by writing, situations start to arise, fears start to fade, anxiety begins to lessen, and worrying start to wash away. Once your stress levels have been lowered, you are able to look at life with more clarity, insight, and direction. Writing not only reduces the emotional stress, but science reveals the benefits to the physical body are profound.
Patients who had asthma increased their lung function by 19% when they wrote about the difficult situation. For those individuals who suffer from epilepsy, journaling is useful for mental stimulation. Cancer patients who journal benefit as well. In many cases the person with cancer accepts their illness, learns to enjoy life and relationships. Many times relationships with family and friends can increase as a result of journal work.
In a hard, scientific study conducted by Dr. Jeffrey Pennibaker of the Southern Baptist Church, he recorded that if an individual writes for 15 to 20 minutes each day on an especially difficult matter, the individual’s immune system will increase. It remains elevated for six weeks after the journaling study.
How Writing in a Journal Reduces Stress
Stress can be a killer, yes!. We all live such hurried, rushed lives that stress seems inevitable. There are many ways to reduce stress and some of those ways are common knowledge, such as exercising and eating a clean diet. But did you know that writing every day can also be a way to significantly reduce stress? By writing in a journal you’ll be able to release how you feel, what’s weighing on your mind, and what you want from life. This may help you get control of your emotions, reduce stress, and release pain. Keeping a diary or journal can help with this process.
When you write once, twice or every day your stress will be greatly reduced. You may notice your mind feeling sharper and less cluttered by unresolved matters that could solve themselves by writing. You may notice relationships alter and improve as frustrations are etched into the paper and you’re able to reflect on what is really important. Feel your stress release, your body relax, and your mind calm as you let your words and emotions flow onto the paper.