Journaling exercises to bring clarity and calm

If you’re looking to better your health and well-being, try keeping a journal. Journaling is good for you — physically, mentally, and emotionally. It’s a stress managing tool, an immunity strengthening act, keeps your brain in tip-top condition, improves your mood and even helps you regulate your emotions! Phew, what an awesome list and all from just picking up a pen!


But what about if you’re sat staring at a blank page, lost with how to start….? r


Try out some of our ideas on putting pen to paper to so you make the most of this cathartic activity:


I’ve got so many thoughts running through my head, where doI start?


As yourself what you feel in that specific moment. It’s an open enough question that can allow for all thoughts to come through but focused enough to start writing. Keep writing until your brain has run dry –ignore spelling errors and avoid proof reading too. It’s about the act rather than the finished product.


I’m feeling worried.


Write each worry out one at a time and while you are doing this, ask yourself what the worse-case scenarios are, how might they affect you, and what you would do. The anticipation of something is often so much worse than when it actually happens. Writing your fears down allows you to play them out in a safe space and working through them until they aren’t a worry anymore.


I feel anxious about a specific person.


Sometimes it’s hard to start an honest confrontation with someone, whether it be a friend, work colleague or family member. Try writing a letter that says everything you want to say but in the knowledge that you have no intention of sending it. Ever.  Getting all your thoughts down can feel very therapeutic but it can also highlight what is important and what we may just need to let go of.


I’m feeling stressed or agitated and I’m not sure why?


Sometimes we get a bee in our bonnet for no obvious reason but what is obvious is that we are lacking some self-care. Try starting with ‘I feel unwell because…’ and let your thoughts flow. By exploring the possible answers to this question can help you to discover what you really need.


I’m feeling negative.


Try keeping a gratitude journal to help you to shift your focus and change your outlook. You can also use it to reflect and understand what is important to you.


Write down what you are lucky to have, be or experience and why. Write down the things that enrich your life, and what you have done to develop them already and how you can focus on them in the future. 


These can be simple things such as:


  • a favourite memory
  • your strengths
  • a list of favourite songs
  • favourite places to visit.
  • your support system of friends/family
  • how you overcame a negative experience in the past