Keep track of any symptoms daily so you can recognize triggers and learn ways to better manage them. Provide an opportunity for positive internal conversation and identify negative thoughts and. Keeping a creative diary gives you the opportunity to take a break from life, relax and let your imagination take hold of you. It helps to calm anxiety and reduce stress by giving you something to focus on in the present moment.
In addition, when you do something creative with your hands, your mind has time and space to process thoughts in the background. Keeping a diary can be effective for anxiety, depression, PTSD, and other mental health conditions. It can also help you manage daily stress, manage your mood, and create a sense of gratitude. You can write a narrative of how your day went or a reflection of a recent trip.
You can vent some of your strongest personal emotions that can't be suppressed. You can discover clarity by classifying the jumble of your mind into words. If you want to dig deeper into using Bullet Journaling to calm anxiety, you can get my free 5-day email course that will specifically teach you how to do it. Of course, there are some disadvantages and possible negative side effects that can come from keeping a diary, such as overwhelming emotions, dragging memories that you would rather leave forgotten, or pushing you into an introspective state that leaves you too focused on your inner experience and neglected from your outer experience.
Of course, any time that can be devoted to keeping an effective journal is time well spent, but the best practice is a regular journaling session. Keeping a diary allows you to capture these thoughts on paper, process them in a more analytical and non-emotional way, and then respond appropriately to them. I think that for some people, closing the diary and keeping it is probably, in itself, an act that helps create some distance between oneself and the problems that you may have been writing about in a journal. It has even been shown to have an impact on physical well-being; avid journalist and magazine writer Michael Grothaus points out that there are studies that suggest that keeping a diary can strengthen the immune system, lower blood pressure, help you sleep better, and generally keep you healthier (201).
have also shown that keeping a diary can reduce the frequency of intrusive depressive thoughts, help college students who are vulnerable to depression, and reduce overall levels of depression in those diagnosed with major depressive disorder. Keeping a journal also allows you to deal directly with things you've experienced instead of avoiding them and not taking the time to process them. From my personal experience, journaling provides an excellent variety of zooming in or out depending on how you want to see life, how much time you have and what you expect from the diary as a companion. As you write in your journal, you can take the time to remember your loved one, process the loss, and start moving on.
In fact, when Pennebaker originally envisioned the diary as a mental health exercise, she was inspired by the benefits of therapy, but aware that not everyone has the means or inclination to talk to a professional about their problems. While you can write in a journal in many different ways, one of the best-studied techniques is called Expressive Writing. If you are looking for some journal prompts to help you become more aware of your emotional responses and how to better manage them, you can download my 30 diary prompts for emotional awareness and self-care. Regardless of the event, habit, or disorder you're struggling to overcome, keeping a journal can help you find healing.