5 reasons to start a daily journal when life smacks you in the face
5 reasons to start a daily journal when life smacks you in the face

5 reasons to start a daily journal when life smacks you in the face

You wonder what I mean by life smacking you in the face, or you might be right with me nodding your head. So do you journal? Have you tried to get into the habit of putting your pen on an open page and just writing? What if you’ve tried and it just won’t come?

Well, even though I write every day, there are times when I look at my many journals and think – get lost. The truth is though when I pick one of them up and just start, I am always amazed by what comes out.

The last few weeks have been for me a smack in the face. When you look at x-rays and you are asked do you want the bad news or the bad news, naturally you ask for the bad news…

However, let’s rewind.

Because I write, walk and reflect, I have spent many hours pouring my heart out in my journal, learning about who I am and finding clarity for all kinds of things.

So I listened and looked within.

What I knew was that evening I would be writing and writing and a bit more of the writing stuff. I knew I would get answers, I’d see stuff that I needed to know about. Leaping out would be aha’s and deep divine inner wisdom.

The full moon was on its way which is a great time for a declutter and letting go. Several letters were written and some goodbyes said. Then I wrote a love letter to me. I could feel my soul expand and while the pain did not go, I could feel it saying hi thanks for getting to know why I am here.

So when the bad news was delivered, I cried, but I was calm because I knew I could and would find a way to learn, reframe and find a way forward.

Let’s take a look at some of the stuff I knew would help me.

One – Gain clarity about your life

As you write in a journal you become more aware of what is really going on around you.  When you reflect on your writing you see things more clearly.  I find that when I am confused about something, it’s best to write down what I am thinking, ask some questions, leave it for a day and I usually find the answers come to me the following day or whilst I am walking the dog.

Two – Writing in a journal reduces stress

Once you have journaled and the words are on the paper, they are out of your head and subsequently, you no longer worry (or worry less) about them.  There is something cathartic about writing and getting it all out that really helps to let things go.

Three – There is no expression like self-expression

Often when you are having difficult times with life and others, it can be really helpful to write down what the issues are.  Hold the conversation, looking at all perspectives on paper.  Then write what you would really like in an assertive and affirmative way.  Two things happen.  One you have already had the conversation so it’s easier the 2nd time around and two because you have had time to reflect you can really consider your language and think about what you want from the conversation, without blame. This works both in conversations with yourself and others.

Four – Know yourself better

When you write in a journal you will start to see repeated patterns of behaviour or types of conversations that seem on an endless loop and are never resolved.  As you read and reflect these become more obvious and allow you to make more conscious choices. You’ll certainly start to see if you are on the right life path.

Five – Expressing yourself in a journal increases creativity

When you write you will start to notice that your vocabulary increases – the same as when you read. The way in which you write and think develops before you know it, your inner voice awakens.  As you scribble solutions form. Life, problems, questions to all kinds suddenly become apparent. Not only that the way in which you solve problems evolves.

What about these?

Writing in a journal is the starting point for your memoirs or personal story

Currently, I have a book in edit, but I know this osteoporosis journey will develop into something as well. I have a journal just for that, alongside the others, to record what I do and how I am feeling. We all need inspiration for our personal stories and a reference point for when we come to write the book.

A journal is the best ‘almost free’ self-help tool available

For the investment of a journal or a pad of paper and a pen, you have a confidante who will not criticise you, tell you what to do, call you names, think that your ideas are nuts or any number of things.  Your journal is a reliable trusted friend for you to share your innermost thoughts, ideas and emotions.

PS. If you don’t already own a journal, get off your bum and buy several. Start writing today. You never know where this adventure may take you. I hope it will take you into the realms of writing a book or a blog to share your experiences so that you can inspire others to know that there is a way through this thing called life.

 

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Dale Darley

Strategist, Coach, writer and author. Helping you to make sense of your ideas and personal stories so that you can create simple strategic direction and design the right products and services for your business. Mum to three dogs and a family of swallows. Life without cake is a life unlived.

  • Great post Dale, I love how you use your tools and resilience to turn around a situation like this PLUS turn it into a written piece that inspires others and shows what each one can do 🙂 Thank you!

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