By EMERSON SUTOW
At first glance, journaling may seem like a joke. How could writing down ideas that are already in your head help you work through problems? Well, take me for example. I thought the same thing, but once I actually took it seriously and started writing, it opened my eyes to how much it helps.
Journaling can have many different uses and can help achieve many different goals. For instance, Psychotherapist Maud Purcell, in “The Health Benefits of Journaling,” addresses how journaling helps clarify thoughts and feelings and also is a stress management tool. Additionally, it can be used to more effectively solve problems while also helping you learn more about yourself.
Journaling originates from 10th century Japan, according to Michael d’Estries in “8 Famous Visionaries Who Kept a Journal.” It was once used as a form of documentation, but in today’s modern society it is almost the exact opposite. He also points out that many successful people of the past have kept journals, such as Albert Einstein, Marie Curie, Mark Twain, and Charles Darwin. Journaling is supposed to help because it uses your left brain, leaving the right brain to be creative with the writing.
People used to write diaries about their daily life so that others could read it and remember that time period. However, in today’s world, it is used more for personal reasons, like helping one get through a situation, after which it is often discarded.
People journal because they can tell a story similar to a rant or vent, but there are no repercussions. Paper will never judge, question or interrupt you; it is just your thoughts are being written out to make things easier to understand and process, which can help you work through tough situations or feelings without outside pressure or opinions.
Writing in a journal could also be put in place of meditation since it is relaxing and brings clarity to life problems according to various studies cited in “83 Benefits of Journaling for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Management” from http://www.positivepsychology.com.
The best thing about journaling is probably that it connects you to yourself. It gives you the chance to see a situation from a different angle and find the best way to deal with problems.