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Why do people journal?

Updated: Oct 24, 2023

Discovering Wellness Through Journaling: 10 Benefits for Mind and Soul

If you're anything like me, you'll feel like you don't have time to write in a journal every day. It feels like another one of those things you know you *should* do, but don't do it, right?

So why do people journal, and do you have to do it every day to benefit? Firstly I think it's helpful to let go of being perfect at journaling, it doesn't need to be neat, with excellent hand writing, even daily. What if we started writing in our journals once a month or simply 'whenever' you felt like it? There are lots of reasons and benefits that aren't time specific!

Here's why you should give journaling a try

The internet offers the following statement "Journaling serves as a powerful tool for self-reflection, emotional release, and personal growth this can enhance your overall wellness and contribute to a more fulfilled life". Well if that isn't a reason enough to pick up a pen... but here's some more just in case. You can bounce here to a post with prompts if you want to jump straight in.

hand holding a pen writing in a journal
Unsplash Image: by Hannah Onlinger

Why do people journal?


  1. Emotional Release: In the busy chaos of life, finding a safe space to express and release your emotions is vital. Journaling provides just that. By transferring your thoughts and feelings onto paper, you can experience a cathartic release, unburdening your mind and lightening your emotional load.

  2. Stress Reduction: Writing in a journal is a therapeutic activity that can help reduce stress levels. By externalizing worries and concerns, you free up mental space and cultivate a sense of calm. Journaling becomes an outlet to process and navigate life's challenges, offering respite from the pressures of everyday life.

  3. Self-Reflection and Self-Discovery: Journaling encourages self-reflection, inviting you to dive deep into your thoughts, beliefs, and experiences. Through the process of introspection, you gain a better understanding of yourself. Journaling facilitates self-discovery, allowing you to uncover hidden aspects of your personality and explore your dreams, desires, and fears.

  4. Problem-Solving: When faced with challenges or dilemmas, journaling becomes a valuable tool for problem-solving. By putting your thoughts on paper, you gain a fresh perspective on the issue at hand. Journaling allows you to analyze different angles, brainstorm ideas, and develop strategies for overcoming obstacles.

  5. Improved Mood and Well-being: Regular journaling has been linked to improved mood and overall well-being. The act of writing helps shift your focus from negativity to positivity. By practicing gratitude and acknowledging personal achievements, you cultivate a more positive outlook on life, fostering happiness and contentment.

  6. Mindfulness: Journaling can serve as a mindfulness practice, grounding you in the present moment. As you write, you become more aware of your thoughts, experiences, and surroundings. The act of journaling encourages mindfulness, fostering a deeper connection with yourself and the world around you.

  7. Enhanced Creativity: The pages of a journal are a blank canvas for your creativity. Through journaling, you unlock your imagination, tap into your innermost thoughts, and explore new ideas. Whether you're an artist, writer, or simply seeking to foster creativity in your daily life, getting your ideas on paper acts as a catalyst for inspiration.

  8. Improved Problem-Solving Skills: By regularly documenting challenges, conflicts, or dilemmas in your journal, you sharpen your problem-solving skills. Journaling allows you to analyze situations objectively, evaluate different options, and devise effective strategies for resolution. Your journal becomes a valuable resource for navigating life's complexities.

  9. Emotional Resilience: Journaling about difficult experiences can help build emotional resilience. It provides a platform to process and make meaning of challenging events. Through journaling, you develop the strength and adaptability to overcome adversity, fostering emotional resilience and growth.

  10. Personal Accountability: Journaling serves as a tool for personal accountability and self-improvement. By documenting your goals, tracking progress, and reflecting on your actions, you hold yourself accountable for personal growth. Your journal becomes a tangible reminder of your aspirations and a motivator to make positive changes in your life.

It's a big list so I hope I've convinced you it's worth giving a try, even it it is every once in a while. You might like to write entries like a letter to a friend. Others may prefer to write, then burn the pages to symbolise letting the emotions on the page go. You may write in the morning to record your dreams, or at night to remember your day. However you chose the benefits are the same perfect handwriting or not.

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