26. FLASH. What about a journal?
In episode 26, I write:
Valuing my feelings and intuitions, 'never say never,' and not being afraid of my and others' judgment: this is a basic recipe that I learn after having made the same 'mistake' for many years.
I think that if I had written a diary - which I did from 12 to 30 years and then later on to treat - I would have been able to identify and listen to my most intimate impressions and intuitions about the people and situations in my life.
In this article DIARY: WRITING ONE CAN HELP YOU HEAL, Teresa Varriale writes:
Writing your thoughts, dreams, feelings, and ideas in a journal is a beneficial practice. Writing helps to get to the heart of one's pain and emotions. Writing about the feelings that emerge after an argument or the upset that arises after a transition period helps make those feelings real.
Knowing and confronting difficult emotions allows the recovery process to begin. Writing a diary is an effective strategy for dealing with the feelings that make us suffer. A journal is a tool to keep our mental health under control. Suppose you find yourself in a recovery situation after a loss or significant pain. In that case, writing allows you to express yourself without conditioning, which is a first step to feeling better.
BENEFITS OF KEEPING A DIARY
It reduces stress
It helps manage depression and anxiety.
Help prioritize your fears and anxieties.
It allows you to recognize the reasons that cause your anxiety.
It is an opportunity to talk to yourself and encourage yourself.
If these benefits aren't enough to convince you to take a pen and paper, think that simply writing down your intentions and reviewing your goals has been shown to improve your mental state significantly. Here are some benefits of writing:
Improve blood pressure levels
Improves the mood
Improve your well-being
Improves the functions of the immune system
THE THERAPEUTIC DIARY
Keeping some therapeutic journal that supports you on your journey of recovery and healing improves your awareness. Writing can also be a tool for resetting or trying to regain balance after a, particularly stressful situation. The report can break negative thought patterns and reorganize our minds to find helpful solutions.
Here are some tips for those new to journaling:
Make it private.
Meditate before writing.
Write the date for each new thought.
Reread what you write from time to time.
Write straight away.
Write without censoring or modifying ourselves.
Allow yourself to tell the whole truth.
Write it in a way that feels as natural to you as possible.
Writing can be an essential part of a holistic healing approach.
WRITE A DIARY WITHOUT RULES
One of the best things about keeping a journal, whether you've been doing it for a short time or years, is that there are no rules. As you decide to keep a journal, it may be helpful to consider the following:
Will you dedicate the diary to a particular topic, or will there be a bit of everything?
Will your journal have lines or just blank pages?
Will there be other people's phrases or just your original thoughts?
Will it be a private diary with a lock, or if someone read it, there would be no problem?
Will you write your thoughts and emotions by hand or on the computer?
Will you write exclusively for yourself, or will you share your thoughts on a blog?
Remember, there are no rules. The possibilities are endless.
TECHNIQUES AND TIPS FOR KEEPING A DIARY
If you feel like starting a journal, the techniques described below will encourage you to develop and maintain this practice.
1. FREE WRITING
Stopwatch for 10, 20, or 30 minutes and let your thoughts flow freely; instead of censoring yourself or writing with a goal in mind, register for the sheer pleasure of writing. You may repeat yourself or get stuck, and if this happens, take a deep breath and keep writing. Write your name! Write "I don't know what to write" write, write, write. You may find you have a lot to say. Reread what you wrote and underline everything that catches your attention.
2. WRITE A LETTER
You could write a letter without the intention of sending it to someone. For example, if you find yourself in the situation of having to divorce or having to overcome a trauma related to a relationship, first read it aloud to yourself or a friend and then burn it. If you find yourself in the situation of having lost someone, write to the person that there is no longer what you feel and how you think, what you miss, what you have learned from him/her, what you have forgotten and what you remember, and how he/she is still alive through you.
These letters are for you. If you are trying to manage addiction, fear, anxiety, a wave of anger, or a state of depression, try to embody these concepts and write them a letter. Tell your worry about losing you, ask your addiction to leave you alone, thank the depression for stopping and making its way. If you are looking for motivation, write a letter to joy, optimism, positivity, or perseverance; this could be the beginning of a therapeutic diary.
3. WRITE A POSTER
A manifesto is a public or private statement of what your values are. Taking some time to think about how you intend to live your life can help you give your life meaning and direction. Spend time thinking and writing about your priorities. Find your motivations, your source of inspiration, and your unique life goals in your diary.
Once you have completed the draft of your manifesto, rewrite it in fair copy or print it; keep it in a place that allows you to read it daily. The next step? Alive!!!
In front of a mirror, read your poster aloud.
4. WRITE THE MORNING PAGES
Start the daily practice of writing three pages of your diary every morning. It is a way to recover and harness your creativity. Take note of the date, time, and place where you wrote those pages. Reread these pages and underline everything that strikes you and every action done. Not a morning person? No problem, do the same around noon or in the evening; don't make excuses. Try to keep this commitment for 30 days and see how it goes.
5. WRITE A GREETING CARD TO YOURSELF FOR YOUR BIRTHDAY
Write yourself a birthday letter with your dreams, wishes, and goals for the next year, the next five, and the next ten years. Write down everything you want to remember. Address it to yourself and write a loving message at the end. Hide this letter and open it on your birthday. Birthdays can be extraordinary occasions to evaluate if you are living the life you want.
6. WRITE YOUR GOALS
Setting nourishing goals is one of the primary purposes for keeping a journal. Start writing 2 to 5 big goals you want to achieve in your life. For each big goal, note 3 to 5 actions you should take every day to support these ideas of yours. Remember, goals that work are specific, measurable, attainable, and relevant to your life.
7. WRITE A DIARY WITH A FOCUS
Start keeping track of your habits in a dedicated journal. Write down any changes in your life: your daily eating habits, how your emotions change during the day, your rhythms regarding the moon phases. Write your dream journal every day and every night enumerate three things you feel grateful for, all of which can speed up your recovery.
8. USE OF SUGGESTIONS
It could be a challenge knowing where and how to start writing. You might ask yourself: "Should I write about what? Using hints or questions can help you get through this initial block.
Below you will find 22 tips to get you started; they are invitations to complete the sentence. Try one a day as many times as you want.
What would you do if you knew you shouldn't fail?
Write a love letter to the world.
If I were sincere...
What I do every day is more important than what I do once in a while. So today ...
Imagine having a whole day to do what you love. How would you spend this special day?
How do you feel right now?
I act ...
What imbalances can you identify in your life?
What scares you about the future? What should you do when fear makes itself felt?
If you think about the future, what makes you happy? What could you do to be more comfortable in your life right now?
It makes me angry that ...
I wonder ...
Write your obituary ...
The best adventure of my life began when ...
If I had waited to be ready, I would never have ...
Keeping a journal has benefits for both the mind and the spirit. Whether you are new to this practice or are looking for some encouraging inspiration, start now! When we recover from a loss, trauma, addiction, or any challenge that life presents us with is hard work. May you find comfort and consolation in the pages of your diary and trust your pen on your journey. Happy writing !!!
Translated by Mariangela Bettanini
DO YOU HAVE A FRIEND WHO TRAVELS IN PAIN? SHARE USING THE BUTTONS BELOW, HERE