5 Health Benefits of Journaling

You’ve probably heard that adding journaling to your morning routine can be a great way to start the day. While some people like to start their day with writing, others prefer to put pen to paper at the end of the day as a way to wind down and clear their mind of the thoughts that arose during the daytime.

If you don’t journal at all, there’s good reason to believe you should give it a try; journaling isn’t just great for your creativity and personal wellbeing, it also seems to have some concrete health benefits.

Manages Stress

Stress is a huge killer in the United States, and has been linked with everything from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to heart disease and high blood pressure. Journaling can be a fantastic way to manage stress, as it allows you to organize your thoughts and feelings about stressful topics like your relationships, job and personal life. Furthermore, the act of focusing on journaling itself can take your mind off of worry and anxiety.

Improves Memory

Some studies, such as one published in the American Psychological Association’s Monitor on Psychology, have also shown that journaling can improve your memory, a real benefit for anyone concerned with healthy aging (and who isnt?).

“(The results of the study)suggest that at least for fairly minor life problems, something as simple as writing about the problem for 20 minutes can yield important effects not only in terms of physical health and mental health, but also in terms of cognitive abilities,” says study co-author Adriel Boals.

Promotes Better Habits

Journaling has a way of impacting multiple facets of your life, many of which are related to your physical health. For example, keeping a food journal or exercise journal is a great way to hold yourself accountable to healthy living goals. Including a lifestyle tracker, which can include how many glasses of water you drank each day or how many steps you took, can be a small component of your journal, and doesn’t need to take up a lot of time. It can be a great motivator for staying on track.

Reduces Your Risk of Disease

Perhaps because of the reduced stress levels correlated with journaling, writing down your thoughts has even been shown to have the effect of reducing your risk of disease.

“There is increasing evidence to support the notion that journaling has a positive impact on physical well-being,” writes Maud Purcell, LCSW, CEAP, for PsychCentral.”University of Texas at Austin psychologist and researcher James Pennebaker contends that regular journaling strengthens immune cells, called T-lymphocytes. Other research indicates that journaling decreases the symptoms of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. “

Positively Impacts Mental Health

Finally, better mental health is another result of the decreased stress levels and improved focus associated with journaling. Journaling is known to help people with anxiety and depression better cope with their feelings, serving as a form of therapy. Even for those who don’t have a mental illness, journaling is great for helping you focus on the positives in your life. Adding agratitude aspect to your journaling practice is a great way to cultivate better mental health.

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36 comments

Latoya B
Latoya Brookins2 months ago

I keep buying journals but have yet to write in any of them.

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Shirley P
Shirley Plowman2 months ago

ITS AMAZING AND IT WORKS!

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Sandy Kay N
Sandy Kay Neill2 months ago

Thank you or this article!

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Pam Bruce
Pam Bruce2 months ago

It is amazing how journaling makes one focus on their lives and the world around them. It makes you open your eyes and really see the world. One friend taught me how to see the world through a child's eyes. That lesson really made me take notice. It's like watching the swallowtail butterflies dance around my lilacs. Look around and then write.

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Renata B
Renata B2 months ago

I don't see journaling as a mere exercise to record appointments and meetings, a "diary" is enough for that and it can be useful to retrieve an address or some dates of what happened when. But journaling can be much more creative and it can easily turn into automatic writing that will show what your subconscious actually feels and wants to tell you.

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Renata B
Renata B2 months ago

Memories are tricky and they can change a lot. If we take notes we shall be able to recapture the "real thing". This will be very useful later on when making decisions.

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Barbara M
Barbara S2 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Leanne K
Leanne K2 months ago

Damn pop up ad took over the screen and my comment was lost. I wont be re writing it.

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Winnie Adams
Winn A2 months ago

Thanks

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Winnie Adams
Winn A2 months ago

Noted

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