Writing has always been something I’ve done for myself. When I was younger, it was an outlet for so many of the things I thought about but didn’t always talk about.
Journaling is a powerful form of increasing your self-awareness. As adults it can help you get through difficult times because you can funnel your pain and confusion into words. When you keep a journal you can go back and observe your participation in life.
It is a great way to help you understand who you are, the dreams you want to accomplish, and it is a safe place to express those thoughts.
In his book Living The 7 Habits: Stories of Courage and Inspiration, Stephen R. Covey advices a father who is struggling with the relationship he has with his son to keep a journal of his thoughts and feelings, so that some day, he can share it with his son.
When the time is right, this young father will have something to give his son that will show that he has loved him all this time.
For years I kept a journal filled with the funny things my children said. Many of these anecdotes ended up in my columns.
Keeping a journal is easy, because there is no specific way to do it. You can buy a nice book to use as a journal– or a plain spiral notebook. Some people write in their journals every day, others just once a week.
Here are a few things to remember when writing in a journal:
*Date all entries.
*Write about specific experiences. Don’t write; my son is such a funny little boy. Write about what he did that was so funny.
*Write different kinds of stories, and remember you don’t have to write about everything that happens in one day. Just write about the important things you want to remember.
*Keep special things in your journal: a special note a loved one wrote you, a drawing from your child, ticket stubs from a concert or a picture that reminds you of that day.
Teaching your children to keep a journal is a great way for them to learn how to express themselves. If they are too young to write, show them how to keep a picture journal. Buy them a special notebook and explain what a journal is.
Next time the family does something special sit down with your child, and ask him to draw a picture that describes what the family did.
If your child is having a bad day, ask him to draw or write about the way he is feeling.
Keeping a journal isn’t for everyone, but it is a great tool to have that can help improve your life and help you better understand yourself. Sometimes it is easier to express your feelings on paper than it is to talk to others.