Writing a diary is something that a lot of us did when we were kids, but most of us have given up on it as we grow into adulthood.
However, you may want to reconsider and start to write again because keeping a diary where you jot down your thoughts, keep track of your highs and lows and express your deepest, darkest secrets is essential for your mental health and well-being.
Putting a pen to paper can fill you with a sense of excitement, anticipation and optimism about your goals and dreams and the actual act of writing makes your dreams more real and concrete than simply thinking about them.
You may be skeptic about starting up a diary again, but science suggests that we can all benefit from writing a daily dairy to improve our health, sanity and prosperity.
Here are our TOP 10 reasons to write about your day, your emotions and feelings, your worries, dreams and aspirations.
#1 Writing a Diary is Cathartic
Any psychologist will agree that bottling up your emotions and feelings isn’t good for you and the best way to handle them is to just let them out so you can deal with them, let them go and move on. Writing a diary or journal allows you to release your emotions and feelings onto a piece of paper and with that ensure that you don’t bottle things up, which could ultimately come out and damage you in a myriad of ways. By writing a daily diary, you give yourself the chance to start each day new, refreshed and energetic without any psychological garbage left from the previous day.
#2 Writing a Diary Makes You Smarter
Writing improves your vocabulary and according to a recent study it has a positive correlation to your intelligence. When we tell a story to our diary, it is a natural urge to find new words to express ourselves and we explore language in a new way, broaden our mind and learn new meanings and with that we become smarter. Studies even show that students who keep diaries have higher grades because the writing forces them to reflect on their emotions and with that are they able to better shape them.
#3 Writing a Diary Increases Self-Awareness
When you start a daily diary and write down whatever is on your mind, you may learn things about yourself that you didn’t know before. By writing down your thoughts, emotions and feelings and looking at them at a later point in time, you shine a light on what’s been going on in your mind that you haven’t been aware of. You’ll discover thought patterns and emotions that illuminate parts of yourself that give you new insights and knowing yourself is a surefire way to emotional and mental well-being.
#4 Writing a Diary Keeps You Organized
A diary can help us to keep our thoughts organized and reminds us of goals we planned and want to achieve, projects we want to start, places we dream to visit. When you go back to your diary after a month or two, you get a clear picture of what you wanted to achieve and can see where you succeeded and where you missed the mark and with that you can re-organize yourself to get more positive results in the future.
#5 Writing a Diary Helps You Achieve Your Goals
A big part of writing a diary includes that we share our dreams, aspirations and ambitions on a piece of paper. It’s like a promise to ourselves to start a new life, find a new job, exercise regularly, read more books, switch to healthier eating habits, quit smoking… Whenever we write down our goals and dreams, we send a signal to our brain that this is actually important. And while writing down that you want to go to the gym everyday doesn’t actually get there, it helps to subconsciously start to look for tools and opportunities to achieve your goals.
#6 Writing a Diary Boosts Memory
The actual act of writing and the relationship with our hands and brains allows us to compose new ideas as well as strengthen our memory of previously recorded information. The interesting thing is that this only works when you put pen to paper and write by hand, a keyboard doesn’t give you the same benefits, so write your diary the old-fashioned way and give your memory a boost.
#7 Writing a Diary Sparks Creativity
When you write without thinking and just let the words flow out of your hand, you’ll be surprised how many ideas and thoughts are in your head. Even if you write only one page a day, you can spark your creativity and push it to new heights. Writing is like brainstorming with yourself, you communicate ideas, process information and memorize your thoughts. Whenever you are stuck with a problem, start writing about it and a creative solution will appear in no time.
#8 Writing a Diary Strengthens Self-Discipline
Let’s be honest, writing a dairy every morning or evening is challenging. We need to push ourselves because we skip a day because we forgot to take notes, we aren’t in the mood to write and eventually the time will come when we decide to give up. Writing a daily dairy is a matter of discipline. It’s like a muscle that needs to be trained regularly if we want to achieve positive results. But if you can master the discipline to stick to your daily writing habit, this will spill over into other areas of your life and turns you into a much more self-disciplined person who can achieve anything you set your mind to.
#9 Writing a Diary Develops Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence means that we have the ability to perceive and manage our own emotions and feelings as well as those of others and by writing, this skill can be developed. Writing a diary increases our self-awareness as we’ve seen above and it helps us to identify and process our emotions and feelings. With that we are able to build a bridge of empathy for better understanding and intuition when we are interacting with other people.
#10 Writing a Diary Makes You More Confident
When we write about positive experiences, we give our brain the chance to relive them. Not only that, when we take the time to re-read what we wrote and reflect on our happy moments and personal achievements, we release dopamine and endorphins that boost our self-confidence, self-esteem and mood. So next time you are in doubt whether or not you will be able to achieve a certain goal or dream, take out your diary and look back on your greatest moments and reaffirm to yourself that you are able to achieve your heart’s desire.
When you sit down to write in your diary, start with the best thing that has happened to you today and then write continuously without worrying about spelling and grammar and without censoring. Promise yourself to write for at least 15 minutes daily and let whatever thoughts, events, feelings, worries and dreams that come to your mind flow onto that blank sheet of paper. It will not only clear your head, it may even improve your physical health.
CLEAR YOUR MIND, SOLVE PROBLEMS AND BECOME SMARTER, MORE CREATIVE AND HAPPIER
Joschi & Monika