Why Journaling is good for our physical AND mental health

I’ll let you in on a secret: A pen coupled with paper can serve as a powerful self-coaching life tool.

The reason for this, is that when we start writing, we access the left brain, which is analytical and rational. And while our left brain is occupied, our right brain is free to create and feel. What this means is that writing removes mental blocks and allows us to use all of our brainpower to;

  • Better understand ourselves
  • Clarify our thoughts and feelings
  • Problem solve, effectively
  • Understand others
  • Track patterns and behaviors
  • Notice change over time.

But this is not all. Psychologists and researchers have also found that journaling has a positive impact on physical well-being. This includes strengthening the immune system, decreasing symptoms of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis, and lowering stress levels.

Journaling is often called “doing a thought download” or “a mind dump”. It involves writing for 10 minutes or so, without stopping, and without editing our thoughts.

The health benefits of Journaling are not a new thing. Journaling dates back to at least 10th century Japan. Successful people throughout history have kept journals including presidents and many famous people. Oscar Wilde, 19th century playwright, said: “I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read on the train.”

There is no downside to journaling. It is one of the most cost effective and useful self-help tools that we have available to us.

Written by Lynda Timperley BTCH, Dip Psyc, Cert Life Coach.

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