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Journaling is one of many ways to help naturally reduce your anxiety.
Writing is a form of therapy where you can focus on getting all of your thoughts out of your head.
This helps you create clarity and gives you a different perspective on your thoughts.
Usually when we’re so wrapped up in our thoughts, we lose sight of what’s real from what isn’t.
Your thoughts form your reality.
That’s why writing everything out in a journal is a great way to get out of your head.
When I went through my first serious break up, I was a mess. I could barely eat, or sleep and I cried often.
Next to my family, journaling helped get me out of a very dark place.
I wrote every single day in a simple college-ruled notebook. The thoughts I felt, what I believed at the time, and I shined a light on all the demon thoughts.
Journaling has always made my hardest days easier.
And it’s a great form of self-care. When you write out your thoughts, you learn to become your own best friend.
Because you see the bad thoughts and realize you don’t truly believe them once they are out in the open.
As you journal, you start to become nicer to yourself because you see how hard on yourself you’re being.
How Journaling Helps Your Anxiety
As with most mental exercises that help relieve anxiety symptoms, journaling seems too simple.
Just writing out your thoughts on a piece of paper doesn’t seem like enough to relieve the anxious thoughts floating around in your head.
But, it really does work. Just think back to when you were in High School and you might have had a diary, or a blog, to help get your thoughts out.
Journaling takes the thoughts bubbling up in your mind and puts them out into the world.
The words you write down on paper shines a light on the dark and dreary thoughts in your head.
It’s almost as if once those thoughts are out in the real world, the power of them vanishes.
Your thoughts are easier to face when you can see them right in front of you.
Trying to solve everything in your head is like trying to solve a difficult math problem.
And working on writing in a journal daily will help tremendously with keeping you in line with yourself.
This is a great solution if you don’t have access to a therapist, or if you don’t feel comfortable talking to other people about your thoughts.
Sometimes, we believe that what we think is so serious and the end of the world, so getting it out on paper will diminish those feelings.
How to Start Journaling Today
If you really want to work on your anxiety, I would highly suggest journaling.
Even if you hate it at first. Your anxious thoughts might tell you that it’s not worth it, or that it won’t actually help.
But, I’m sure you would rather have days where you felt better than give into those negative thoughts.
And journaling will get you there.
So, how do you start? And how often should you do it?
Either grab a cheap notebook or find a cute journal that inspires you. It doesn’t have to be fancy.
You can keep it on your nightstand so you can write in it every night and document your day.
Or, you can keep it with you throughout the day so you can write down your thoughts anytime you’re feeling anxious.
This is a good way to figure out your triggers.
It really doesn’t matter what time of day or how often you should do it.
As long as you take a few minutes out of each day to write down your thoughts and reflect on how you’re feeling.
If you have a really good day, still document it. Write down the things that went well and what made you happy.
Using a journal can help you keep track of how your mood is throughout the day.
It can also be a great way to reflect on how far you’ve come.
What I like to do is set a reminder in my phone for a time every day that I know I won’t be busy. At around 8pm at night.
That way I can take 15 minutes and just get it all out there.
At first it might feel weird for you, if you’ve never done it before.
But, it gets easier. And after a few days you will definitely notice a difference.
And, at the beginning you might need to take more time to write down all of the thoughts that have been forming in your head.
Here are 20 Journal Prompts to Help You Get Started:
1. Write about your week so far. What are some good and bad things that have happened?
2. What are the top components of a perfect day for you?
3. List the ways you’ve changed for the better.
4. Write down 3 major changes you need to make in your life right now.
5. Write down all of the people who love you for who you truly are.
6. List all of the qualities you like most in yourself.
7. Write down everything you would try if you weren’t so afraid.
8. What are the best things your parents taught you about living life?
9. What do you feel most anxious about right now?
10. What would you like to be remembered for?
11. What are some major things you’ve overcome in life?
12. Think about what triggers your anxiety. Write it down and come up with ways to overcome the trigger.
13. What do you want to accomplish within the next year? What’s holding you back from accomplishing it? How will you succeed?
14. What was the most challenging part of today? How did you get through it?
15. Write down 10 things you’re grateful for right now
16. What are some things you are really good at?
17. Think about the happiest moments in your life. What happened and why were they so great?
18. Is there a time as a child where you felt scared or hurt? Write down that moment. Then, write down what your adult self would say to comfort your younger self.
19. Write down 5 kind things to say to yourself every day
20. Who are the closest people to you? Write down who they are and why they are so important.
These are just a few of many journaling prompts that can help in managing your anxiety.
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Do you have any journal prompt suggestions? Leave them in the comments below!