Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Value of Journaling

Five Reasons to Keep a Journal
By Debbie Roome

The word journal comes from the same root as the words journey and day. A journal is a day to day record of the journey of life. Keeping a journal can be extremely meaningful and a wonderful way to unwind and analyze feelings.

Record Thoughts and Memories
Write down special happenings and events that impact your life. This may be for your own personal enjoyment or as a record for future generations. Never underestimate how important these words could be for your children and grandchildren. If writing from a historical point of view, mention significant medical advances or incidents that may interest family in years to come.

Times of Solitude for your Soul
Journaling is generally a private affair. It forces you to take time out and find a secluded spot to pour your feelings onto paper. It’s a time to relax and think; a time to examine heart issues and write about them.

Journaling is a Form of Creativity
Because journals are mostly for personal enjoyment, it is easy to write freely without worrying about polishing words and perfecting punctuation. It’s a place to experiment, to write snatches of creativity and phrases that appeal. If you want to fill a page with words describing cookies or a stormy lake, that’s absolutely acceptable.

Writing can aid Inner Healing
A journal is a place to explore emotional pain and write things that can’t or shouldn’t be expressed verbally. Writing things out is often cathartic and brings clarity and healing. I love this quote from Shakespeare’s Othello: What wound did ever heal but by degrees? Journaling can be part of that healing process.

Connecting with God
Journaling can link well with devotional times. Reading the Bible and recording thoughts and revelations in a journal can reinforce what God is saying to you. It can also be a means of expressing deep feelings to God; feelings you may have difficulty verbalizing can be written down.

Many people journal every day as part of their routine. Others journal erratically as inspiration strikes or something significant happens that they want to record. Whichever way you journal, it can result in great growth and personal satisfaction.

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1 comment:

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

I've been journaling for about seven years on an almost daily basis. During my late husband's illness and the grief process, writing my thoughts, pain, concerns, and prayers helped ease the stress. It's almost like I transferred them from my heart to the paper.

Thank you for your article. I hope others will find joy and comfort in journaling.

Susan :)