Journaling for awareness and understanding is a tremendously useful and popular tool for supporting personal growth and empowerment. Essentially, journalling is using writing to reflect on your inner life and to observe and listen to yourself.
Self awareness and understanding are key foundations for personal power.
Keeping a reflective journal is different to keeping a diary of events where the focus tends to be a record of what you did, where and with whom. In journaling the focus is on exploring yourself and how you live in the world. It is a particularly effective way to gain insights and to better understand your Self. You write about your thoughts, your feelings, your hopes and concerns. You examine your reactions and behaviours with various people and experiences. It is an opportunity to explore how you handle different experiences and to better understand how various people and experiences effect you.
Your writing can be an unstructured freely flowing stream of consciousness about whatever comes to mind. Alternatively, you could focus on a particular issue such as stress, or overwhelm, or fear or lack of confidence.
You may like to analyse a particular theme such as “what holds me back from pursuing or achieving my goals and dreams?” or “what expectations do I have of myself and other people?”
Exploring specific questions is particularly valuable for helping you to effectively address whatever is bothering you. For example “how come I was so angry when Jo left this morning?” or “what, exactly, is causing me to feel so unhappy at work?”
There are a multitude of benefits that come from a regular practice of reflective journaling.
Some of the benefits from regular journaling include:
- Increase your self understanding and gain insights
- Increase your self awareness
- Clarify your needs
- Become clear about what is truly important to you – in life generally, or in particular situations or relationships
- Discover specific targets for change that will improve your quality of life or effectiveness
- Gain relief from feelings and better understanding your feelings
- Prepare how you want to handle a particular situation or relationship issue
- Sort out confusing or conflicting feelings and experiences
- Problem solving and decision making is easier when you can see how all the factors inter-relate
Some people write every day, from a few paragraphs to several pages. Others find it useful to write intermittently as various situations or issues arise.
Journalling can assist you to live your life in more effective, enjoyable and masterful ways. You may also like to read other related posts Congruence With Values, Taking Care of Values and The Power of Values.
To understand more about how you process information look out for Communication and Accuracy.