Stress is a normal part of life. It only gets out of hand when you cannot manage it well. Journaling or keeping a diary of your thoughts is one of the most effective tricks to prevent stress from escalating.
You need a diary to record your thoughts regularly or when you feel the pressure mounting. The diary acts as a self exploratory tool. It will help you to look backwards and trace the genesis of your mental troubles. From the analysis, you can find a solution.
How does journaling help you to manage and reduce stress? Here are excellent expert insights.
Journaling provides clarity over the stressful issue
Journaling involves writing down the thoughts that are bogging you down. As you write, you will be expressing them into words. Whether you read the journal later or not, you will have a clearer idea of the issues bothering you. It is the beginning of healing and proper management.
A clear view of the stressful issues helps you to find a solution. To begin with, you have a direct issue to tackle like drugs, loneliness, too much work, poor relationships, or personal expectations, among others. You will address it directly with the aim of finding a lasting solution. In case you have to see a therapist, you know the specific issues to raise or the kind of therapist to visit.
You can track changes in emotions
Stress comes with dynamic emotions. One minute you are extremely happy while another you are sad and horrible. To manage the stress, you must know your highs and lows. It will help you to tame your actions, and especially find necessary support.
Tracking is also a way of diagnosing the cause of stress. You may realize that your stress comes at the beginning of an exam or due to financial constraints. From your journal, you will identify events or moments that trigger your stress. It is especially important to notice early signs of stress to ease management so that you can arrest the situation before it gets out of hand.
The assistance of a counselor will also help you to identify patterns. Patterns indicate triggers that are easier to handle when known. You avoid treating the symptoms and instead focus on the actual causes of stress.
Helps you to identify patterns and deal with the causes
If you are dealing with perennial stress, you need to break the pattern. Writing down situations surrounding stressful moments and the thoughts coming to mind is one of the ways to deal with the pattern. Stress will come to you in waves, each of which has a cause. You need to see it coming so that you can ride the wave safely.
The best counselors will not help you until you get to the root of your stress. As you write your thoughts and feelings, you can see a low moment and a peak of stress. You have a real issue to deal with and break the cycle or pattern of danger.
It provides an escape for emotions
Emotions exist to be expressed. They are dangerous when they build-up into your system. They become a source of stress and could lead to depression.
Sometimes it is impossible to express them towards the person or situation causing them. Still, these emotions will haunt you, especially if you do not deal with them. Writing down your thoughts and feelings provides an escape. As the emotions leave your mind, it becomes clear. You can now handle the issues at hand with clarity of vision. At times, you realize that you had nothing to worry about. Once you handle the issue causing anxiety, the stress will disappear.
Develop a strategy to tackle stress
Stress can get chronic if you do not handle it promptly. In other cases, you will be paralyzed if you fail to deal with the root cause of issues. When it becomes a habit or pattern, you fail to enjoy the seasons. Once you talk to a counselor, you will learn the benefits of developing a stress management strategy.
The strategy begins by identifying the early signs. As you journal the circumstances surrounding your stress, you know the issues to address. With a specific issue in mind, you can find a therapist or a place where you can keep away from stress. A strategy is one of the long term solutions to stress. It is personalized and will keep you away from harmful side effects of extended stress windows.
Keeps things in perspective
Stress will disorient your life. You cannot focus on a single issue because of the thoughts running through your head. However, writing down these thoughts is one of the ways to tame them. They also give you real issues to handle instead of fumbling with everything that comes to mind. You can now focus on managing the stress issues or handling other responsibilities because your mind is clear.
Improve your mood
Writing is a physical and mental activity, just like jogging or working out in the gym. It has an intense therapeutic effect that will go a long way in improving your mood. As you write down the thoughts, new ideas come to mind. You may find a song, a poem, a story, or such artistic expressions coming to mind. Beautiful memories also flood your head, resulting in a better mood. Before you are done writing a paragraph or two, you will feel like a different person.
Stress has a negative connotation, but for the wrong reasons. It is normal to stress over issues. All you need is to know how to manage it. As you write down issues, you begin to know more about yourself. Your financial status and its effect on your mental health become clear. You understand your relationships, goals and expectations, among other issues. This is a crucial journey of self awareness. You have a better idea of your limits. You can now perform better in different situations because you know how far you should go.
Journaling requires dedication and honest review of your thoughts. As a reward, you improve engagements with people and the surrounding. You can handle issues that you thought were beyond your capacity. It is exciting to watch the journey of recovery once you are out of the stress-hole.
Anna Johnson is a freelance writer offering online dissertation help. She has been assisting students to build a better college experience for years now. She offers practical ideas that are enriched by research and insights from seasoned industry experts.