Stress affects almost everyone at some time in their lives. For some people, it’s more of a problem with their genetics.
For others, it’s due to their situation. Have you ever felt stressed or anxious and asked yourself, “how do I relieve stress?”
Whatever reason you are stressed, congratulations for recognizing it and wanting to do something about it. The next step is to get help relieve stress.
How To Use Journaling Help Relieve Stress
So what is best for you – just how do you relieve stress?
Journaling can help you achieve your goals because it will force you to think about them, consider the why and how, and delve deeper into the situation so that you can examine all sides of it.
Make Your Journaling More Effective To Help Relieve Stress
Any type of journal that you keep can be beneficial to help work through problems – you can use a journal to do it all.
A journal will work for you if you pick the right type and make journaling a ritual.
Use your journal to address your stress related problems. Don’t just write in the journal; actively seek to improve something in your life – whether it’s the thoughts which drive your feelings or improving your actions so that you experience more success.
Here are 12 tips that show how you can use journaling to help relieve stress.
1. Find the Right Medium for You
For some people, that’s pen and paper. Many experts claim that’s the best way because of its simplicity. However, you have to do what works for you, and what works for you is what you will do daily. If you make it too hard, you won’t do it.
2. Set Up a Comfy Journaling Spot
Find a good space you can journal in each day, one which is relaxing and without stress. Some people like to keep their journal by their bedside so that each night when they get into bed, they can quickly write in their journals.
3. Turn Journaling Daily into a Habit – Write Daily for 5 to 15 Minutes
The thing about journaling that is important is you need to do it daily long term for it to really work. It takes a lot of writing and insight to figure out why you’re dealing with stress and how to overcome it.
To be most effective, journaling has to go on for a long time. It’s a long-term strategy to improve your life and not something that is going to have any effect overnight. For this reason, ritualize your journaling so that it becomes a daily habit.
4. Consider Using More Than Writing to Document Your Life
You don’t need to just use text. You can use images, pictures, tickets, and other memories inside your journal too. Sometimes a few pictures and mementos mean more than anything you can write to help you remember.
Journaling – What To Write To Help Relieve Stress
5. Write about Your Worries
Go straight to the problem and write about your worries. Describe them from every single angle you can come up with. The more descriptive, the better. Go back to the first time you felt this feeling regarding this topic so that you can get to the bottom of it.
6. Describe What’s Happening Now
Put out of your mind what you did, what someone else did, or what can be done – right now write about precisely what is happening right now and where you stand with the issue causing your stress. If it’s generalized stress, try to make a list of things that might be contributing.
7. Document the Worst That Can Happen
As you look at the situation, one thing that often causes stress is the unknown, or the “worst thing” that you think can happen. Describe this worst thing but make it realistic.
For example, don’t make up something like an airplane falling on your wedding party. That isn’t realistic. However, bad weather, rude in-laws, and other issues may be.
8. Document the Best That Can Happen
Let’s get serious by thinking about and writing about the very best (realistic) outcome of the situation you’re stressing about.
Include potential steps and tactics to achieve this best-case scenario so that you can see it to fruition if you so choose.
9. Document What Is Really Happening
As you are writing, be very careful to be realistic and honest above all else. Other than when you imagine the best and worst, ensure that you are also documenting the reality of what is happening to you right now. That way, you can narrow down identifying the stress-inducing situation.
10. Write a Counter-Argument to Yourself
A really good way to overcome some stress about a situation is to argue with yourself. First, tell your story as a letter to yourself about what is happening.
Then write a letter back to yourself in answer, arguing all the negativity and turning it into positivity. If your best friend wrote that, what would you say back?
11. Read and Reflect Occasionally
Take at least a few minutes to re-read parts of your journal. Once you’ve kept it for a year, it’s fun to go back and read the same day from last year to find out what’s different now and what’s the same and why.
12. Keep Your Journal Secure
You don’t want to worry about anyone getting into your private business when you’re not around, so keep it hidden. If it’s on your computer, keep it password protected.
It’s surprising that writing can accomplish so much, but if you go into journaling to help with stress, under the right attitude and with a goal in mind, you can achieve a lot.
The important thing is that you need to be honest with yourself so that you can find out the true causes of your stress. In this way, the actions you take to overcome it really are effective.
An increasing number of people are using Mindfulness meditation to help relieve stress and anxiety. Using journaling along with this technique could be a great combination.