When she released deluxe editions of her 7th studio album, Lover, Taylor Swift did so together with 110 select pages from her diaries dating back to when she was 13 years old.
Many people may relate to the pop start when it comes to keeping a diary or a journal. When you were a teenager, you likely had one of those journals with locks, with the key safely tucked away at the bottom of your drawer. And like Swift, you might have chronicled the highs and lows of your teenage life between the empty pages, filling them with thousands of “Dear Diary” entries.
One of the most notable things Swift said regarding her diary keeping is, “I have written about everything that has happened to me. That’s been one of my ways of coping with things. I need to write songs or write something to process life, good times or bad.”
Apart from chronicling your present, allowing you to look back and remember forgotten memories years later, journaling offers benefits for your mental health and overall well-being as well. We break down some of these benefits below:
1. Journals help reduce your stress
Today’s journals, called bullet journals, aren’t simply words on paper. They are also filled with Polaroid photos, old school train tickets, artfully ripped book pages, and more aesthetic design elements. Armed with your glue pens, washi tapes, and dried flowers, you can design your journal’s pages into something that reflects your mood. This kind of journaling has no rules and boundaries, so you can bring your chaotic thoughts into order by simply making lists or confronting what’s stressing you out by writing it through calligraphy.
2. Journals improve your focus and mental clarity
One of the best benefits of journaling is keeping your brain in tip-top shape. When you’re recalling what you did, what you said, who you met, and where you went every day, you’re also exercising your memory capacity. What’s more, transferring your thoughts from your head to the paper empties your mind, allowing it to be a problem-solver instead of simply a problem-keeper.
3. Journals improve your introspection and understanding
Sometimes, it can be difficult to make sense of your jumbled thoughts and feelings. By writing, doodling, and journaling away, you’re essentially having a conversation with yourself on paper. Reading your thoughts can make you better interpret your feelings about a particular subject and draw out insights you might have otherwise missed.
3. Journals help you keep track of your mood
Journals today are composed not just of your recollection of the day’s events but also a budget tracker, a grocery list, and other kinds of lists and reminders. So, it’s nothing novel to see journal spreads with creative mood trackers, too. This serves as a helpful resource that allows you to recognize possible triggers, especially for bad moods, so you can learn ways to avoid or control them and take better charge of your emotional well-being.
In a world filled with different kinds of stressors everywhere, putting your thoughts into words and other creative mediums is a great way to relieve stress and achieve better overall wellness.