A fresh journal or notebook is much like a brand new year – wide open and full of possibilities.
Studies have shown that keeping a daily diary can positively impact your mental health, and can even improve your chances of successfully achieving your goals. Whether you’re a long-time journal-keeper, or brand new to the practice, we think it’s a habit worth looking into. We’ve put together a list of four reasons why we think adding a journal practice to your 2021 plans is a great idea:
- Cultivate an attitude of gratitude: One of the easiest ways to begin a journaling practice is to take a few moments every day to write down a list of what you are grateful for. It’s recommended to do this first thing in the morning to set your mindset for the day, but truly any time of day is a great time to make a gratitude list – and best of all, it barely takes any time! Start by making a point to write a list of five things you are grateful for in your life (even if it’s just that cup of fresh coffee you’ve got brewing), you will likely find that once you get going, a cascade of positive, grateful thoughts follow very quickly!
- Hindsight is 20/20: People who have been keeping a journal, or diary, or blog, will likely all tell you that one of their top favourite things about the practice is that they can look back and see just how much they’ve changed, and grown, and accomplished over time. With so much going on all the time, it’s nice to take a moment to revisit some of the little things from times past.
- Improving your mood and mindset: Writing in a journal can positively impact your mood by calming and clearing your mind, releasing pent-up feelings and everyday stress, and letting go of negative thoughts. By writing out thoughts or feelings that are causing your stress, you have the opportunity to express yourself freely – without judgement or restriction – and will have the ability to process, and hopefully let go of, those thoughts and feelings as you go. Shredding or tearing up a few pages of anxiety-fueled ranting can be very therapeutic.
- Reach those goals: Experts suggest getting very specific with your goals, writing out not only what you want to achieve, but how you want to feel when you get there. The simplest reason to write down your goals is that it will serve as a reminder of what exactly you want to achieve plus, putting something in writing can also feel just that much more official. Saying “I will ___” is not as big of a commitment as writing out “I will ___” and signing your name to it. Having your goals written down is also a great way to track progress, and filter out any opportunities that arise for you. Does this opportunity align with your goal? If not, it might make sense to politely decline in order to stay on track.
Coles at Westshore Town Centre has a beautiful selection of journals, diaries, date books and note books, and some even come with built in writing prompts so you’re guided along every step of the way. Pop in and visit our friends at Coles, and they’ll get you set up with the right journal for your needs.
From all of us at Westshore Town Centre, we wish you a year of health and happiness!