Writing things down by hand, in a daily journal planner, brings important benefits; many of which are linked to improving your mental health.
You’re no doubt familiar with the many benefits of list writing and work diaries. That’s not what we mean.
A daily journal adds a crucial extra dimension, including retrospective writing and techniques to make you happier.
Let’s start with a blank page, preferably in a lovely new journal like the Getting Stuff Done planner or the Make It Happen notebook. It can be incredibly liberating. You’re free to write whatever you want, as this is your own private space, with no limits and an audience of one – you!
PROCESS YOUR DAY
A daily journal planner shouldn’t just be about the necessary evils of task and time management. Use the space to declutter your mind of lots of other little stuff too. If you need some tips to de-clutter your mind, why not try this bullet journal method?
This is fabulous stress relief and a way of reducing distractions. Do you need to pick up milk, ring your Mum, put the right colored bin out or find your umbrella? Why not include some treats too, like booking a beauty treatment, picking up a posh coffee, or chatting to a friend?
Putting it down on paper reinforces it in your memory and makes it more likely to happen. That’s just as true of ‘me time’ as it is of work commitments.
COLLECT YOUR DREAMS AND GOALS
Daydreaming on paper and creating a ‘bucket list’ can be good for you, including healing you when life is getting ‘too much’. Why not learn how to create a vision board here?
Note ideas and random ambitions that come to mind too. From such spontaneous musings comes a determination to make positive changes, and the beginnings of plans to help achieve your goals.
INCREASE YOUR EQ
Journaling is a valuable tool to increase your ‘emotional intelligence’ or EQ.
Your daily journal is a wonderful way to vent, letting all your emotional responses flow on to the page either never to be read again or to look back on from a new perspective. Gratitude journaling alone has so many benefits, find out how to start gratitude journaling here.
Why bottle up a bad day, or keep personal satisfaction to yourself? Writing it down can be very cathartic, which is why journaling is widely recommended by mental health professionals.
Write a letter to someone who has hurt or offended you, instead of chewing over what you’d like to say for hours.
LEARN TO BE A BETTER PERSON
THROUGH YOUR JOURNAL
You could expand your intellect with your journal, with a topic of research or new word or phrase ‘of the day’ to practice using in conversation or report writing.
Or, better still, include daily uplifting messages to improve your positivity. The Getting Stuff Done planner helps by prompting you to fill in your daily plan, your meals, your self-care, water intake and more, so you can journal your way to a better day.
Writing in journals is a great way to practice mindfulness too. To relax you could craft a fiction piece, poem or observation about nature. Or just doodle! Doodling has been proven to be highly therapeutic.
One important ‘rule’ to finish with – there are no rules!
Writing in your daily journal could become second nature, but you don’t have to write every day, and there’s no limit on the amount you write either.