Journaling Proven to Boost Self Esteem.
Could that be true?
Journaling records go back all the way to 10thcentury Japan.
Successful people throughout history have kept journals. Presidents have maintained them for posterity; other famous figures for their own purposes. Oscar Wilde, the 19th-century playwright, said: “I never travel without my diary. One should always have. Why not try it?
Though clinicians make the claim about journaling benefits quite often, and more and more research backs it up. Some feel that a journal is an excellent way to get negative experiences and thoughts out of you and onto the paper so you can write about your feelings, reactions, anger, hurt and, ideally, conclude that entry with an action plan for the future to deal with similar situations differently.
Many journalists report a release of tension, anxiety and generalized unhappiness immediately after journaling a negative interaction or event. My clients have found this to be very useful.
Setting goals for happiness or achievement and the steps planned to attain them are particularly useful too.
Other professionals advise a journal to be used solely to compliment yourself daily on conducting yourself in an estimable manner, helping others, accomplishing tasks and highlighting your good qualities. Everyone has positive traits, behaviors, and accomplishments that are forgotten or that go unnoticed. Paying tribute to these can boost both self-esteem and self-respect over time.
Writing about gratitude is proven to fight both depression and anxiety.
Cursive writing uses your left brain, the base of analytical and rational thought so you can clarify your thoughts but leaves the right brain free to create, imagine, feel, and clarify what really makes you happy and satisfied.
Writing about disagreements and unpleasant encounters helps to come up with sensible solutions if you first let all the emotion out.
If you are right-handed, cursive writing is slightly more effective than for left-handed persons but highly beneficial for all.
There is no right or wrong way to journal, except it is highly advisable to do at least just a bit every day, any way you want, not worrying about spelling, grammar or how upset you may be with someone. It is easiest if you select a manageable size and keep the journal with you so that you can make a note whenever convenient or before an insight is lost. I do advise finding a way to keep your writing private though.
I’ve found that tremendous value can be had by reading your entries at the end of every month. You’d be amazed at how much you’ve accomplished, grown, decided on – or whatever was the theme of your writing over that month-long period.
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Author: Sharon Valentino, MFT
Valentino Therapy – CA LMFT, RAS, ChT, CATC IV (#51746)
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