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Getting Clarity in a Few Minutes a Day.

Journaling is a great way of disclosing emotions rather than stuffing them down, as stuffing our feelings is known to be harmful to our health. So many of us have secret pain or shame that we haven’t shared with others swarming around our brains in images and emotions. Through writing, our pain can be translated into black-and-white words that exist outside of ourselves.

On the thinking level, writing forces us to organize our experiences into a sequence, giving us a chance to examine cause and effect and form a coherent story. Through journaling, we can also gain some distance from our experiences and begin to understand them in new ways, stumbling upon insights about ourselves and the world. While trauma can upset our beliefs about how life works, processing trauma through writing often gives us a sense of control.

Expressive Writing is traditionally done for four days in a row, but there isn’t anything magical about this formula. Studies suggest you can journal:

  • a few days in a row, a couple of times a week, or just once a week;

  • you can write for 10, 15, or 20 minutes;

  • and you can keep journaling about the same topic or switch to different ones each time.

It's important to remember not to rehash the same difficult experience over and over again. Ruminating does not provide clarity. It is important to move into your feelings and not just stay in the headspace of thoughts. Move into the place of creating a healthy reality by taking control of your thought process.

The best way to create a healthy thought process is to notice the event that took place and the judgment you had about that experience or event. Then, THE KEY COMPONENT is to change your thought to a positive feeling. Generate this new feeling and think about a different action that occurs or could be chosen.

An example of this would be Katie who is upset with herself for not exercising for a whole week. She can ruminate and focus on how she blew it, how she must not be a healthy person, and how lazy she is. Or... she can change her thoughts and tell herself she's had enough of a break and her body is ready to start this part of her routine again.

Which thought process gets you going forward? The 2nd one of course!

This week, whenever you start speaking negatively about yourself, stop and reframe. Make this the focus of your journal writing if you don't know what else you could possibly journal about.

Want to dive deeper into your emotions and learn some specific techniques to help you, consider booking a coaching session with me.

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