Last week we started a series on journaling. I shared my journaling story, you can check it out by clicking the link if you missed it.
You may be wondering so what really is the big deal about journalling? Why do I need to journal? Well today, I will answer your questions and share 7 benefits of journaling.
But before we do that let’s find out what exactly journaling is.
What is Journaling?
Journaling is the act of writing your thoughts, experiences and observations. It is a private space reserved just for you. It could be an account of your day like a diary. From a spiritual point of view, it would involve writing what God is teaching you, your prayer requests, your gratitudes and answers to prayers. It could include your hopes for the future, your dreams, or thoughts on a book you have read.
Writing in a journal is more than just writing facts or recounting events, it is an opportunity to write from your heart as you reflect on what God is saying to you, events, occurrences and daily miracles in your life. It is a chance to get in touch with your inner self.
The word “journal” comes from the Latin word called diurnus meaning “of the day”. People have kept journals since humans learnt to write. Famous people have enjoyed journaling e.g Leonardo da Vinci, Anne Frank etc.
Journaling is one way to process and articulate your thoughts, to talk to God and tell him how you feel. It is a way to grow your faith as document your journey. You know how sometimes your heart is heavy with all kinds of worry but you are not able to pray…well you can write out your prayers instead. Your journal is a safe outlet where you can be the real you with no judgement or concern of what anyone else thinks.
Some people use their blogs or social media as a form of journaling. I kept a personal blog for about 6 years but I still find traditional journaling with pen and paper more therapeutic. Find what works for you. You don’t have to be a talented writer to keep a journal. All you need is an open mind to let those words flow as you write what is on your mind.
7 benefits of Journaling
Below are 7 benefits of journaling that I have experienced personally.
- You develop an attitude of thankfulness. The first thing I write in my journal every morning is three things I am grateful for. Even when I am having a tough time, this helps me look beyond my issues to what God is doing in my life and in the life of my family. Writing out my gratitude list has helped me live amazed everyday
- You can articulate your thoughts and change your perspective to life. It brings clarity. Sometimes when my mind is bugged down with all kinds of things, there is a release I experience when I write it down and read it back to myself. I am able to view my thoughts more objectively, give meaning to what has been on my mind. Sometimes I am able to completely eradicate some seemingly big issues that have been weighing my mind down just by writing them down.
- You can document prayer requests and most importantly document praise report when God answers your prayers. I mentioned last week about some of the answers to prayer God gave me and my family and how I was reassured when a new challenge came my way. I was able to take comfort in what God had done in the past for me.
- You worry less. I am always eager to write in my journal especially when I have a new challenge or issue because I believe God reads my journal and is waiting to surprise me with what He can do. I am always expectant instead of worrying.
- You desire to hear more from God and be closer to Him. Because I am eager to write what God is sharing with me, I write expecting to hear from Him as I read His Word to get a personal word for the day.
- It is safe place to be honest with yourself and with God. I can tell Him when I have messed up or what I am struggling with and I begin to hear Him teach me how I can do better next time. This has helped me know myself better and become a better version of me. It has deepened my relationship with God and myself.
- You slow down, live each day intentionally, full of hope and with a good attitude. At the start of each day, I write out a declaration in my journal to help set the tone of the day. Two of such declarations I like to write are: “this is the day that the Lord has made I will rejoice and be glad in it” or “I have peace today because Christ has overcome the world on my behalf”. By writing out declarations and meditating on them I am able to face each day with God’s strength and not in my strength.
I hope that after reading all these benefits listed above, you will be convinced that journaling is important.
What kind of journal do you keep and what benefits have you experienced since journaling? Please share in the comments below.
photo credits: Flickr by by Caitlinator Writing. | by Caitlinator