The Benefits Of Journaling And How To Start A Journal Practice

Woman sitting at a desk writing in a journal, practicing journaling

Do you want to start journaling but have no clue where to start and what to write about? 

Starting a journal can be a great habit for anyone who wants to organize their thoughts and improve their overall well being. If you are a beginner, a journal is basically a personal diary where you write your thoughts, experience, and emotions. 

When you decide to start journaling it’s completely up to you to choose how much time you can keep aside and how often you can write as there’s no rule that you have to practice journaling every single day, you can start with just a couple of days in a week. 

4 Benefits of starting a journal

It has the ability to reduce mental clutter and chatter

According to the study we get around 60,000 thoughts per day and almost 90% of them can be repetitive meaning that we speak to ourselves almost all the time. Sometimes these thoughts are positive and other times they can be negative. 

PS- It is another great way to note that completely getting rid of negative thoughts is not a realistic expectation to have. 

And there’s no secret that they do have the ability to distract you and that is the main reason you need to start writing them down instead of letting them swim around in your mind.

When we write them down, we allow ourselves to see patterns emerge in our thinking and get clarity on which area of our life needs our attention at this moment. 

 It helps you reduce stress and anxiety 

Journaling is especially great for people who are often stressed out and anxious. Journaling can also help you let go of fear, negative emotions that you were holding for a long time and at the same time create space for new, better and positive things. 

You get to know yourself better

We all are very well aware of what’s happening around us but not a lot of people know what’s going on in their inner world. 

When you start to journal you get to understand yourself more and more, you understand your behaviors and thought patterns and also you notice a lot of different things that maybe you had not identified before. 

Some other ways on how journaling can help you get to know yourself better-

  • You set your priorities and get clear about your values and vision. 
  • Putting your emotions into words can be beneficial and helps you understand them even better.
  • You also get to know about your strengths and weaknesses which you otherwise would not be aware of. 
  • You become more creative but in your own way. 

You stop holding grudges against yourself and others

It really becomes easier to stop holding grudges against others and yourself when you start shifting your perspective towards the situation. 

Remember you can’t change the situation but you can always find alternate ways to see yourself and others. 

As I mentioned earlier it is crucial to provide that safe and judgment free environment for yourself so you can self reflect.

PS- I know it is always hard to let go of such feelings but forgiving someone (including yourself) is a first step to move forward and journaling is a way to do that. 

Related reads:

the benefits of starting a journaling practice
How to start journaling and why you should be doing it

Here are a few things you can do to start journaling practice 

Now we have discussed the benefits, let’s know how you can start journaling. 

1 – Decide if you are a digital or pen and paper person

So first thing first, there is no right or wrong way to start journaling but to make the process fun and interesting you need to decide whether you are a digital person or a pen and paper one. 

If you are unsure about it, I would recommend trying out both ways for a week and then choose which method you want to continue with.

2 – Decide when you will write about

Although it’s a good idea to set aside some fixed time to write. That could be in the morning after you wake up or at night before going to sleep. If you have a full-time job and hectic schedule, you can choose any time that works best for you even if it is just a few days in a week. 

When you are ready to write in your journal you can start with writing down your thoughts and feelings. You can also write about things currently going on in your mind. 

So for example- if there’s something bothering you or if you are journaling at night you can write about your experience of the day even if it is not-so-good be honest with yourself.  

PS- While journaling it is important that you create a quiet and  distractions free environment and also a judgment free zone where you don’t judge yourself and instead can have a creative, safe, and fun experience.

Decide what to write about 

As we have already discussed before, there are many things you can write about- your good and bad experiences, emotions and feelings. 

But there are always times when we just go blank and can’t think of what to journal about. In those situations, I recommend that you take help of journal prompts. It will surely help you discover a lot of new things about yourself that you would not have thought of before. 

Last but not least, journaling is to reduce your stress and make you a stress-free and happy person and that being said, do not stress over it too much. Just go with the flow.  

Author: Disha from Stunning New Life

Disha is a personal development enthusiast and creator of Stunning New Life blog where she shares all her life experiences and provides ideas and helpful info on mindset and lifestyle-related topics that helps people make better life decisions and live their life to the fullest. 

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