Friday, October 5, 2012

Fearless Fridays: Journaling is Good For The Soul

Writing has always been a form of escape for me. I began to journal when I was 10. It was a traumatic year for me. I went to live with a relative for a year so I was in a new school, a new home. And it was not a great experience for me at all. For reasons I won't divulge here, it was one of the worst years of my life that defined and shaped who I am today. Being able to write and journal my feelings helped me get through it all. Journaling helped me while I was in a dark space in my life. It gave me strength. My journal became my best friend; my lifeline.

As the years progressed, my journaling continued. It made me feel better to put my feelings down on paper. It was as if I was purging myself and leaving all the crap behind in my journal. Even today, my journaling is one of the things that I rely on in order to heal my spirit when needed. But it has become more than that. A journal wasn't just a place to record my negative moments. It also became a space to celebrate the good stuff, too. I have times where I go back and read past entries. It shows me how far I have come in my life. It helps me to reflect and let go.

Journaling is essentially telling your story. Everyone's story has its good and bad moments. But it is YOUR story; YOUR life. Journaling is therapeutic. It's never good to keep things bottled up. And if you have no one to talk to and vent to...well, you have your journal where you can write as much as you want and say whatever you want. Your journal is your space to do what you see fit.

There is no standard way to journal. A friend of mine journals by writing poetry. I have another friend who does video entries. Some people have private blogs online where they journal. Or you can do it the old-fashioned way like I do and journal in a notebook. You choose how you want to journal. It's all about telling your story in the way you want to tell it. Since you are creating your own space, you have the freedom to set it up however you want. That freedom is a powerful feeling. It makes you feel free enough to let go of the emotional baggage because you are releasing those feelings into your journal.  An essential part of life is letting go. If you can't let go, you can't move further on your journey. So a journal is the perfect companion for you while on your journey.

A journal can also aid as a guidebook to you during your journey. Old journal entries can work wonders on keeping you in check, let me tell you. By reading past entries, you can rediscover the things you need to do in your life to make changes for the better.  And you can also see how you once were and see how far you have come. You certainly don't want to go backwards in life, only forward.  Through your journal, your past self can check your present self and make sure you don't make the same mistakes or react the same way to a situation.

It’s just something about having a notebook to write anything I want in it, that makes me feel calm and safe.  The best thing about a journal? You don’t need to be a writer to journal. Just write how you feel and let it flow. You will be amazed at what will come out and how great you will feel after.

Journaling is good for the soul. This I know. I can't imagine where I'd be today if I couldn't write my feelings and experiences out on paper. Journaling has helped me to be more open in life. It has provided me with a way to see myself as I really am and realize that I am okay. I am normal. I am enough. It helps me to make my voice heard. When there are times when I feel like I can't say something to someone or about something out loud, I know that I have my journal. I can write it all out and leave it there. 

So if you're feeling like you're carrying too much weight on your heart and soul, you need to release that immediately. All you need is a piece of paper and a pen...or even just a laptop or a cell phone. Just find a way to write it out and let go. Trust me, you will feel better and life will be better. Life is short, unexpected and never guaranteed. All we have are the moments. So tell your story today, let go and let it be.

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