This upcoming Wednesday, April 12th, Becca and I will be representing the English and World Languages Department at the “Spring Into Wellness” Fair. For this event, which takes place from 11am-2pm at the SMC promenade, we will be promoting the benefits of mindful journaling. If you are in the area at this time, please come and visit us!
Although being a graduate student does not allow for much time outside of academics and work, it is important to include practices of self-care, like mindful journaling, into one’s daily routine. One of the largest benefits of mindful journaling is that it provides a space to acknowledge and process your emotions. Mindfulness, in the simplest of terms, is a state of awareness for the present moment. In our daily lives, we encounter so many people and experiences that can cause a variety of emotions to present themselves throughout the day. If we do not address these feelings, they have the potential to overwhelm us and set a negative tone for the rest of the week. Also, not acknowledging one’s feelings could drain any remaining energy left for the day, causing one to feel unproductive and defeated. Having an opportunity to process and release these emotions, whether they be ones of anxiety, stress, or depression, allows for not only the regulation of emotions, but also the ability to become more self-aware. Creating a space to be present also allows for increased positivity, gratitude, mental organization, and expression of self.
Now that we have discussed just a few of the many benefits of mindful journaling, let’s focus on the actual different types of journaling. There are many different types of journaling that you could try to see which is the best fit for you. One of the most popular is reflective journaling, which is what probably comes to mind when you think about this type of writing. This type allows your journal to become a private place to reflect on your life and process emotions and experiences. Reflective journaling can seem overwhelming when you have a lot to write about, so it may be helpful to find some online prompts to help guide your journey. However, if you want a space where you can freely transfer the thoughts in your mind onto the page, stream of consciousness journaling may be a better option for you. If you’re looking for a more organized approach, bullet journaling is a great option. Using a grid pattern rather than a blank page as base, bullet journaling uses creative and organized layouts that combine several uses of journaling is a systematic way. It can be used as a daily dairy, a calendar, mood tracker, task manager, and place to reflect all at the same time. Having a specific intention for your journaling is something that is gaining in popularity, as seen in the rise of gratitude journaling. This type of journaling allows for a space to document everything you are grateful for, which is a great place to go back to when you are feeling down.