Anxiety can be horrible. It can feel like your life is spinning out of control and it is taking over everything you do. Trust me, I know the feeling. And it may feel like there is nothing you can do and no way you can get better. The good news is, there are things you can do to improve it. Research and experts have suggested that journaling is a powerful tool to improve your anxiety.
There are so many reasons to keep a journal. A lot of people use their journal for planning, learning, drawing or writing. However, there is another reason to keep a journal. Journaling has the benefit of soothing anxiety. This tool that is often overlooked is an excellent way to get a handle on anxiety & all of its crazy symptoms.
Venting your thoughts onto paper can be beneficial for several reasons. Such as, it can aid us to remain accountable to ourselves, feelings, purpose and plan. It can be an ideal way to note any hopes, aspirations or dreams and make them believable.
Journaling can also help you organise your thoughts better. When you are struggling with a problem and feeling stressed, a journal can help you identify any triggers and then help you resolve the issue, therefore, reducing the stress.
When we feel anxious and have anxious thoughts, we may try to push them away and think of something else. However, this only suppresses our stress, and usually makes it pop back up later on.
But there is a much better option: according to research, writing down your worries can make them go away — almost as if you are transferring them out of your head and into the paper.
When you journal, declutter your mind of all those negative thoughts into the page. You will feel lighter, happier, and more relaxed.
Some times you can be lying in bed for hours, unable to sleep due to stress, anxiety and worrying.
Sometimes, writing down your tasks for the next day right before bed can remove that pressure. This will help your brain relax and let it know that you won’t forget it.
You can also journal what your day will exactly look like.
This will not only relieve your brain from the pressure of remembering and planning, but it can also be very relaxing!
By putting off tasks, completing to-do lists etc.- you can make your anxiety worse. However, by changing your belief that you are not productive can alter this.
Research has claimed that we have the power to rewire neurons and can therefore change the way we think and behave.
To do this, all you need to do is create an extremely easy to accomplish task that you need to do, that is impossible to fail. For example, drink a cup of water, make my bed, meditate for 3 minutes, etc.
All you need to do is make sure you accomplish those tasks. It doesn’t matter if they feel extremely small, it’s important that you will be relearning the feeling of accomplishment and pride which will, in turn, push away your anxiety.
Productivity will become a pleasure.
Here are some more tips on how to journal to improve your anxiety:
- Find a journal you look forward to writing in- it will mean you more likely will
- Schedule a time to write. Dedicate an exact time of the day to write in your journal.
- Don't focus on a word count. Do it for as long or as little as feels good.
- Get in the habit of setting aside time each day.
- Keep your journal private. It’s meant to be a judgemental-free space (if you want to show it to partners’, therapists, etc. then you can if it’s beneficial)
- There is no right way to journal. Do what works best for you.
- Make sure the act of journaling is a mindful activity. Try to do it in an environment that you can dedicate your full attention to.
Hope this helps! You can find our Anxiety Journal here which specialises in challenging anxious thoughts and being more mindful.