[Post adapted from http://tinybuddha.com/blog/10-journaling-tips-to-help-you-heal-grow-and-thrive/]
In the programs here at Inner Door Center® we strongly encourage journaling to help our clients through the healing and recovery process. Some clients feel intimidated by this – either they have never journaled before and don’t know exactly what to say, or they have tried journaling with little success in keeping it up.
These 10 tips can help you get started with your journal:
1. Start writing about where you are in your life at this moment. This can be as simple as stating where you are sitting to write this, or as complex as where you are in your journey to achieving goals in your life. Talk about your living situations, your relationships, your work… are these things where you want them to be? Do you want to take them to a different level?
2. For five to ten minutes just start writing in a “stream of consciousness.” Just let your thoughts flow… don’t stop moving your pen or pencil… don’t censor anything…
3. Start a dialogue with your inner child by writing in your subdominant hand. Answer with your dominant hand. What comes up for you when you do this?
4. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude by maintaining a daily list of things you appreciate in your life, including uplifting quotes. Try to write at least one thing each day that happened to put a smile on your face. Keep them in a separate section, write them at the bottom of each page, or keep a whole journal just for these positive thoughts. Look back on them when you’re having a gloomy day… reading these themselves may bring a smile!
5. Start a journal of self-portraits. You can take pictures, draw colors or shapes or collage images. Learn to love and accept yourself just the way you are today.
6. Keep a nature diary to connect with the natural world. The world we live in is a magical and mysterious place. Record the things you notice about the sky, the weather, and the seasons.
7. Maintain a log of successes. Begin by writing the big ones you remember then regularly jot down small successes that occur during the week. As you pay attention, your list will grow and inspire you.
8. Keep a log or playlist of your favorite songs. Write about the moods they evoke. When you hear a song that triggers a strong memory, write down how you feel and explore that time and space of your life.
9. If there is something you are struggling with or if there is an event that is disturbing you, write about it in the third person. This will give you distance and provide a new perspective. Write down what you learned about yourself.
10. Develop your intuition. Write down questions or concerns then take a deep breath and listen for a response from your Higher Self. Let yourself write automatically. If you don’t get an answer right away, look for signs during the day.