Saturday, October 9, 2010

Dear Diary. On the Uses of Journaling

I saw David Sedaris the other night and was inspired to journal more. He read several of his incisive diary entries. There’s a lot of research to support the benefits of journaling for physical and mental health, learning and creativity.

Uses of journaling include:

*Gratitude journaling

*Figuring out problems

*Working through stressful situations/writing to heal

* Documenting positive events to refer to later when needed, i.e., when you’re feeling down

*Tracking progress in various endeavors, e.g., dieting, forgiveness

*Visual journaling for wellness/stress-reduction

*Pursuing goals

*Consolidating learning and enhancing creative thought

*Practicing writing

Journaling is free, you can do it almost any time and it doesn’t require any physical exertion or special equipment. People have all sorts of admonitions as to how it must be done: daily, 20 minutes, keep it private, buy a pretty journal, a new pen, etc.

There are just two things I think might actually be important. First, to try not to self-sensor. Your journal is your opportunity to say what you think. Next, if you want to really give it a try, you’re going to have to commit to doing it for a few weeks.

Dear, dear diary, I want to tell my secrets.  ‘Cause you’re the only one I know who’ll keep them.
 Dear DiaryPink.

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