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Benefit From Keeping A Journal!

Everyone's heard about journaling. Many of you have been keeping journals and diaries for years, as a carry-over from childhood. I began to keep a journal in my teenage years.

So, why do it? There are many personal benefits for journaling. I will share a few below.

Have you ever felt like there was a battle being waged inside your head? Maybe it had to do with how you handled a job issue, parented your kids or a struggled with your partner. A journal can become a mediation forum between those warring factions of your brain, giving each an opportunity to be heard. 

At times you may be shocked at what comes out on paper. You may realize you've been unfair to yourself or another. This
can be the beginning of understanding and personal change. 

Is your prayer life stale? To freshen your prayer power create a "Prayer Journal" and journal your prayers to God. It's a good aide in talking to God, one-on-one. This is a great tool for "focusing" your prayers. There are times when you start a prayer off with gusto and then your mind trails off . . . . Journaling prayers keeps you focused until you dot the end of the line. Title each prayer by theme and you'll have your own personal prayer book in no time at all.

Do you enjoy genealogy, keeping a historical account of your life? This is a sort of word scrapbook, which can mark significant experiences along a time line during your life.

Any poets out there? I first began journaling by writing poetry. I can't claim to be a great poet, but I've purged onto paper many experiences and emotions over the course of time.

Problem-Solution journaling is popular in therapy. This is where you simply journal about an event where the problem was present, so you can learn about the problem -- almost as if it were a person. You study it's behavior, goals, how it influences you and other family members etc. Journaling in this manner is a way to bring a problem into the light -- and in this manner you come to greater understanding, drawing insights and planning actions to conquer the problem in the future.

Anyone ever become confused about situations where your feelings don't seem to match the experience you just had? Like becoming angry at an 8 on a scale of 10 when the event really called for about a 4 instead? Journaling by using rating scales like this can help you begin to better match your emotional and behavioral responses to situations in your life.

Are you committed to lifelong personal growth? If so, here is a nifty journaling exercise which is quick and efficient for this purpose. There are three components :

1 -> The Gratitudes -- Write three gratitudes
2 -> Right as Rain -- Write one thing you are doing right
3 -> Work in Progress -- Write one thing you are working on.

As you can see there are many journaling styles. No single style is right or wrong. The right journaling style is the one that fits your needs at the time you need it.  Journaling styles change, just keep journaling!


Happy Journaling and see the review at the right for a great beginning!



Dave Turo-Shields (email)
Veteran Psychotherapist, Trainer & Life Coach

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Resource Review 
"The 5 Year Journal"

A while back I was contacted by the author of "The 5 Year Journal," Doreene Clement.  She asked if I'd like to review her journal.  Ever since I began receiving a decent amount of traffic to my websites I've been hearing from folks like Doreen.  In the hundreds of requests I receive, I rarely accept, and even more rarely do I feel strongly enough to pass it along to you.   This is one of those times that I would be doing you an injustice if I did not let you know about this fantastic resource.  

The worst thing about  writing in her journal is that it's so beautiful, you may cringe as you consider writing in it.  I'm not kidding.  It's a green hardback book with an awesome cover that you'll want to run your hand across just to feel the texture of it.

The journal covers 5 years of your life, all in one book!  What an accomplishment.  And somehow she still manages to include powerful quotes, focus questions, quarterly reflection questions and more.  No, the journal does not weigh 86 pounds.  It's only about an inch thick.

It's built perfectly for the busy life. It allows for the highlights of your day.  If you're a serious journaling enthusiast, spending more than 15 minutes writing and you write several  pages a day, this journal is not for you.  You'll need more space.  Otherwise, it's among the best journals I've ever come across.

Take a closer look! 


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