5 Ways a Journal Can Help You Feel Happier

Did you ever keep a diary when you were younger? If so, you know how good it felt to confess your deepest secrets, unload your worries, focus on gratitude or maybe you simply enjoy the art of writing. Diaries aren’t just for kids and teenagers! Adults might call it a journal, but the concept is the same and can have great benefits.

Using a journal can help you solve problems effectively, reduce stress and anxiety and cope with emotional traumas, including grief and loss. Journals can also serve as a dream holder, goal saver or companion for whenever you need to get your thoughts out of your head and onto paper.

Another benefit of journaling? There are no rules. You don’t have to do it every day and there isn’t one single way of doing it perfectly, just do what feels right for you. If you’re inspired to start journaling, but don’t know how to start, try one of these five approaches:

  • Log what happened that day. Journaling is an effective way to relax and decompress at the end of the day. Did anything special happen during the day? Did you meet someone new? What remarkable thing happened at work? Reflecting on the positives puts your last thoughts on an up note.
  • Show your gratitude. Keeping a gratitude journal is a fantastic way to stay positive and remember of all of the amazing things that happen to you on a daily basis. This mood-boosting activity can also help you stay optimistic since it reminds you how many positive moments you have. What you’re grateful for can be as large as getting a new job or as small as a woman at the coffee shop complimenting your scarf.
  • Say it with a picture. Where words don’t work, photographs Those pictures you took during a recent family dinner, outing with a friend or even on a nature walk alone are perfect for your next journaling session. Try a program like AirPrint or Cloud Print that allow you to print your pictures right on your home printer.  Caption the pictures with memories, thoughts or  something that stood out to you.
  • Be inspired. Have a quote that keeps you motivated? See a picture on Pinterest that inspired you or Facebook that made you smile? Hear someone at work say something uplifting? Use your journal to keep note of these moments and sayings that you can refer to at any given time.
  • Plan your passions. What is that one dream that just won’t let you sleep at night? That one passion that would be your life’s goal to fulfill? Committing your goals onto paper not only makes them more real, but helps you get started on the road to making them come true.

 

Photo Credit: Elizabeth Cooper

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