How can journaling help your mental health

May 28, 2023 | Benefits of journaling

As it’s Mental Health Awareness month it’s a particularly good time to talk about the benefits journaling can have on your mental health. I could go on about this for ages so it’ll come up again I’m sure!

We all have mental health, in varying degrees of wellness, just like our physical health. And just like the choices we make to maintain, improve or repair our physical health, we can make choices that will have a positive impact on our mental health too.

So how can journaling help your mental health?

Journaling helps your mental health in several ways.

Getting the jumble of thoughts out of your head and down on to paper makes it much easier to make sense of them, to figure out what’s most important and to create some order out of the chaos, which reduces feelings of confusion and overwhelm.

Writing about how you’re feeling about something specific and drilling down deeper by asking, “What do I mean by that?” after every couple of sentences can be really helpful in becoming aware of the reasons behind your reactions. Awareness and understanding of the cause is always the first step to discovering a solution and feeling better.

The same goes for working out the pros and cons of a decision you need to make and DECIDING (and doesn’t it feel good when you’ve made a big decision and can just get on with it instead of dithering about in a state of uncertainty?!)

These are all quite chunky ways journaling can help your mental health and will take a little while to complete. But you don’t always have to spend ages buried in your journal to feel the benefits. Just like what we do for our physical health, the choices we make for our mental health can be big… or they can be small and cumulative.

You know what it’s like when you get out of bed in the morning and stub your toe? Puts you into a right old grump for hours doesn’t it?! Journaling can be like that, but in a much more positive way!

Just a few minutes spent journaling in the morning can boost your mood and send you off into your day with a spring in your step. Think of it like a vitamin shot for your mental health. Done regularly, these few minutes of positivity soon add up and can make a gentle but noticeable improvement in your overall wellbeing.

I’m all for making the introduction of something new and beneficial as easy as possible, because then you’re much more likely to do it, and, more importantly, keep doing it! Which is why I have a FREE Simple Daily Journal Sheet to get you started with journaling, to dip your toe in the water so to speak and see how it feels. (Obviously I hope it feels wonderful and makes you want to wade in a bit further, but just see how you go.) It includes a handful of prompts designed to help you to focus your attention on the good stuff and should only take you a few minutes morning and evening to top and tail your day. You can get it here.

When you deliberately put your attention on the positive, while it doesn’t take away the negative, it does boost your mood and lift your spirits which puts you in a much better frame of mind to deal with the hard stuff and come up with some solutions. When you start to make a little progress with your difficulties it makes you feel more hopeful and more in control, rather than swamped and stuck, which has a massive impact on your wellbeing.

I hope you’re curious enough to give it a try. Let me know how you get on.


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