Can journaling during COVID-19 really help? Right now, the whole world is in a state of slight (or, more than slight) panic. There is a lot of stress, anxiety, and fear going around, and chances are, you’ve experienced it yourself. Whether you’re a parent trying to figure out a new routine with and for your kids, a professional working through the difficulties of staying at home, a student running into the obstacles of online learning, or all of the above, every person is facing their own challenges in their own way.
So many suggestions have been thrown out there to try and help combat all of the overwhelming emotions: getting enough sleep, setting up a schedule for yourself and your family, eating healthy meals, staying active, video calling friends… The list goes on. But did you know that journaling is another great way to reduce stress and anxiety? And the research is here to back it up!
How Journaling Affects Our Minds
- According to The University of Rochester Medical Center, journaling can help you manage anxiety, reduce stress, cope with depression, and improve your mood by helping you prioritize problems and track your symptoms so you can learn your triggers and control them.
- Journaling can also enhance your sense of well-being, improve your working memory, and boost your mood.
- Keeping a journal can help you keep an organized mind and can be helpful when processing information or making sense of trauma.
Okay, so now what? Sure, journaling is great, but it can be hard to get started. The key to making journaling a part of your routine is getting started! So grab an old notebook you’ve got lying around, and choose one, two, or more of the questions below to answer each day. If every day feels like too big of a commitment, start with just three times a week!
- What are 5 good things that happened today?
- What’s one thing you can do differently tomorrow to help it be a better day than today?
- What’s one adjustment you can make to your routine to help set up the day for success?
- What’s the main source of your stress or anxiety? Can you do anything about it?
- What are 10 things that make you happy right now?
- What are 3 things you can do daily to be a positive influence for others?
- How did/will you exercise your mind, body, and spirit today?
- What’s one thing that happened today that you’re still trying to process/understand?
- Did you feel anxious or worried today? When did it start? What caused the feeling?
- Who are two people in your life that mean a lot to you and why?
- What’s one thing that would have to change for you to feel completely satisfied?
- Is there anything that is consistently disturbing your inner peace?
- What do you not like to talk about? Why not?
- What is one thing you learned today?
- If you were completely free of fear, what would you be doing differently today?
- What’s one thing that you’re proud of yourself for?
- What decisions could you make today/tomorrow that could improve your mental, emotional, and/or physical health?
- What’s one habit that you would like to correct? What are some steps you can take toward correcting that habit?
- What are you most ashamed of right now? Why?
- What are 3 things that you did really well today?
Journaling is a great way to understand your thoughts, gain self-awareness, and process the world around you. And now is a great time to start!