Most of us have experienced a time when we just don’t know what to do about a situation. This often leads to us feeling overwhelmed with no idea of how to even begin to tackle the problem. One way to sort out the chaos in your mind and to give you a clearer picture of what’s going on is to write your thoughts and feelings down. By taking a piece of paper or a journal and writing down everything that’s going on in your life – and we mean everything from your work or school commitments to your social obligations and everything in between – you’ll get a clearer picture of what is important and what’s not. The following are just some of the benefits of journaling;
Clears Your Mind and Prepares for Decision Making
Writing down everything indiscriminately helps to clear your mind and put some order into the mass of thoughts that make decision making so difficult. It helps you to clear your mind of the clutter and prepare it for taking action to resolve the issue or problem.
Helps You to Deal with Stress
Writing in a journal is a great way to deal with stressful situations. For example, if you’re a student who is struggling financially and you’re thinking about taking out student loans to help fund your education, writing down the pros and cons of taking out a loan can give you a clearer picture of how these loans work and what you can expect with repayments. Do you know the difference between federal and private loans? Do you know whether the interest rate will be fixed or variable? When will you be expected to pay the money back and how long will the repayment term be? Putting it all down in black and white will put the process in perspective.
Clarifies Your Emotions
When our minds are busy, it can be difficult to understand what we really think about something. Putting your thoughts into words helps you to process these feelings and enables you to work out what’s important. The more you unload onto paper, the closer you’ll get to the feelings underlying those thoughts and the more you’ll be able to understand what you want in life and what’s holding you back from achieving it.
Helps You to Take Action
The process of writing your thoughts down helps to solidify them. Seeing them on the paper allows you to see them more clearly and will push you into taking action. This doesn’t just apply to negative thoughts or problems; writing down your ideas and ambitions for the future is the first step to making them a reality. They become the foundation of your action plan, which can then be broken down into achievable steps so that you can reach your goals.
Gives You a Record of Your Personal Development
If you choose to write your thoughts and feelings in a journal, over time you’ll create an in-depth record of your personal development. You’ll be able to see how you handled issues in the past, what your hopes and dreams were and whether you’ve achieved them, and if and how your personal values have changed since you began journaling. You may even see a common thread running through your entries and discover things about yourself that you hadn’t realized before.