The Power of Journaling: A Mindful Practice

How To Journal As Meditation

By Alexandria Rose Rizik

Meditation comes in many different forms.

For some, it is simply closing their eyes and focusing on their breathing.

For others, it may be a stroll in the neighborhood, becoming aware of all nature’s beauty.

Another practice of meditation is journaling.

The Benefits Of Journaling

To allow one’s self to write a few pages everyday — whether it be before you start your morning or when all has come to an end — can release anxiety, tension, and stress both mentally and physically.

Think of how easy it is for a young child to keep a diary — they have no fears of writing down their thoughts, dreams, passions, fears, the cute boy at school. As adults we have allowed society to replace who we are with who we are “supposed” to be. Plus, in a world consisted of advanced technology and constant exposure due to social media, we cannot help but allow stress and confusion to creep their way through our minds, forcing us to deal with angst. This practice of journaling really helps “adulting” become simpler. It puts everything into perspective when we see the truth on the page. Allow yourself to release yourself through words — it doesn’t have to be beautiful. It just has to be honest.

Sure, writing down your feelings helps you to vent (without consequences), take the power away from your thoughts, and gives you the tools by which to examine your thoughts through a more objective lens, but journaling is about more than just the mental benefits.

According to the American Psychological Association, patients who wrote about the most “stressful” occurrence they’ve dealt with regard to a physical ailment “showed improvement on objective, clinical evaluations,” as compared to a control group.

That is some powerful stuff — and it goes to show that everything begins and ends in the mind.

Keeping a diary allowed them to detox their mind. It was a release. A spring cleaning.

Dumping your feeling in a journal allows you to move on with your day without holding onto any sort of tension. Think of it as taking out the trash — a trash full of all your worries, feelings, concerns, pains, aches, moments, and also a way to share the good things as well. A venting mechanism.

How To Start Journaling

Check out The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. In this 12 week course designed to help you to (re)discover the creative artist inside of you, the first thing you are taught is the power of “Morning Pages” — which is writing every day when you wake up, before you do anything else, for three pages.

No sensors.

No stopping until you’ve completed the three pages.

It can be anything, even if you have to spend every line scribing “I don’t know what to write.” This daily ritual — that may be stronger than your morning cup of coffee — applies to so many aspects of life.

Buy yourself a notebook and write in it every day.

Write about what scares you, what you want, something you’ve always dreamed of doing but haven’t taken the risk.

Once a week, jot down any changes you have taken note of during this process.

Let the pen transcribe whatever comes to mind. During the process, when you begin to notice negative assertions, comments, and/or opinions about yourself, find a way to turn them into positives.

Use this practice as therapy. It’s free, natural, and so worth it — and goes to show there is a type of meditation for everyone. Like Julia Cameron quoted, “leap and the net will appear.”

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