BLOG_2020_05_07 Journaling Your Way Through Crisis

Journaling Your Way Through Crisis

7 MAY 2020

One of the best ways to get through a personal crisis is through journaling or writing down your thoughts. It helps bring up emotions for clearing. It can help creative solutions rise to the surface. And it serves as a record of your experience so you can turn to them again and again if and when needed.

The general notion of journaling might not be of interest to everyone. But there are multiple ways to journal, and at least one of them is likely to appeal to (and benefit) you.

Here are six techniques, each with a different application you may want to explore.

1. A Story Book: Human beings are natural story-tellers so keeping a story journal can be especially helpful if you’re depressed, struggling with a sudden crisis or unresolved tragedy, or living with a chronic ailment.

Stories have a beginning, middle, and end. Write your experience as if you are telling a story. Some experts advise writing about the same episode several times; maybe each time from a different emotion you are feeling.  The retelling often gives us a new perspective.

2. A Worry Book: This format can benefit those who suffer from anxiety, stress, or insomnia.

Draw a line down the center of a page. On the left, write some of the issues upsetting you and on the right list some of the steps you’ve taken to address the problem, or some solutions you can try. Use this space to plan, organize, and strategize for the future.  By doing this, we gain control so things will likely look less worrisome.  We can’t always control the situation, but we can always control how we respond to each situation.

3. A Daily Log: This log is useful if you want to get more fit, spend less money, understand your body’s rhythms, or chart your recovery from illness. Use this journal to keep track of anything from growing a garden, releasing weight to raising a child.

In this journal, simply record the facts: how far you walked or how long you exercised, how much you spent on what, how your body feels, etc. You may also want to write some narrative in addition to the “facts”  such as how you are feeling. 

4. A Couple or Family Journal: This type of journaling enhances communications, deepens emotional bonds, and encourages trust and intimacy.

The journal is left in a place where everyone has free access, anytime. Each person is encouraged to write, record his or her thoughts or feelings, or respond to another person’s entry. Remember to write compliments and encouragements as well as writing through problems and misunderstandings. The rule of thumb I like to use is: “For each negative/complaint, there must be two positives/compliments!”  And the complaints should be expressed in terms of how it makes you feel: e.g. “I feel like I don’t get enough time with you” rather than, “You are always working”.

5. A Gratitude Journal: This can be especially helpful to those who are inclined to be pessimistic, depressed, over-stressed, or in the midst of a crisis. And it’s a journal which can bring anyone joy.

Simply make a list of that for which you are thankful. From the smallest to the grandest, the very personal to the global. Every day write five to ten things for which you are grateful. It doesn’t matter if you repeat yourself.

6. A Big Jar of Happiness

If you struggle with the idea or journaling or find it takes too much time, here’s another super simple and easy way to start. 

Each day, jot a note about what you are most grateful for that day or moment. Fold it up and put it in a jar you love. Keep the jar somewhere you will see it every day as a reminder. After some time, it’s fun to go back and relive your gratitude over again, creating even more gratitude!

Check out my video if you want to know more about using this tool. Click here to watch


Commit to journaling this month!
Choose the technique that appeals to you and
send me an email to share your experiences!


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