In studies conducted, it has been found that writing the events of the day in a journal drastically increases your powers of recall and memory.
It also helps to ‘unload’ all the baggage you’ve collected during the day.
It helps you to remember all the blessings you’ve been sent and the new ways you learned to overcome an obstacle.
It allows you to see all the wonderful things that happened today and reminds you to be grateful.
Congratulate yourself on all the good you did, the lessons you learned and even just getting through the day to the best of your ability.
Journaling helps you to go back through each event that happened during the day and analyze your reaction to that event. This way you can gain valuable information that slipped past in the rush.
You see interactions with others (good and bad) and can learn from them.
- Was reacting in that way the best way to handle the situation?
- If you’d approached him from this angle, would a better result have been achieved for all parties involved?
You reinforce your memory by reviewing the day’s happenings.
By going over the day’s events your memory is forced to recall details that you would otherwise have forgotten. This re-enforces the path of your memory and you’ll find it easier to recall specific events.
You also see the gifts you were given during the day
- A smile from a stranger or a compliment from the cute guy in the lift.
- That taxi pulling up just in time, when you knew you were going to be late.
You can keep a record of anything new that you learned. This helps to show you that you are, in fact, learning something new every day, which gives your self-confidence a boost.
It’s also good to look back over previous journals and see how you’ve developed as a person and to reminisce. This way you can see how all the hard work you put into improving your life, is paying off.
Journaling allows you to write down what you’re grateful for, which gives you a profound sense of humility and gratitude in amongst all the thoughts of ‘lack’.
Here’s how I get the most benefit out of journaling:
I got myself a ‘day per page’ journal and made a deal with myself that I would write in it every night, before going to sleep.
I write down everything that happened during the day.
The good and bad (be careful to use positive language and always give a good side to a bad event). How you handled situations, things you learned, people you met, gifts you received (a hug from a friend or your daughter waving goodbye as you go to work).
Writing everything out helps clarify a situation, put things into perspective, clears the negative and affirms the positive.
At the bottom of the page I summarize the new things I’ve learned and the things that happened today that I’m grateful for.
I’ve found this to be a wonderful way to remind myself of all the good things that happen to me every day. In a world where we habitually tend to think negatively, a journal can be our own little ray of sunshine.
Author: Lisa van den Berg