“Journal writing, when it becomes a ritual for transformation, is not only life-changing but life-expanding”

-Jen Williamson

Journal writing is certainly a feat I never saw myself taking on. Ironic, I know, since I’m a writer. But, I never thought about investing in a journal and making this form of writing a step in my daily routine. Until COVID-19.

For me, personally, this pandemic caused me to drown in a monstrous, endless and vicious sea with my anxieties, depression, doubts, insecurities, and struggles. Perhaps journal writing would be my solace.

As negative thoughts swirled through my mind on an endless loop, I purchased my journal. Here we go.

The Beginning Of Journal Writing

art, girl and art journal - image #7238421 on Favim.com

When my journal arrived, I felt a tingle of excitement. I was buzzing and eager to see where this journey of would take me. I stared at the empty booklet. “You are exactly where you need to be,” said the front cover. Smiling, I flipped to the first crisp, white page. And I picked up a pen.

While at first, I doubted my writing abilities, the words surprisingly came naturally to me. My pen danced elegantly on the smooth paper. I watched as my hand quickly traveled from page to page. The heaviness of my mental illnesses disappeared with each word. I felt lighter, somehow. Was this the power of journal writing?

My first journey was a one day trip to the land of anxiety and depression. Since my grandfather passed away in September, my mental health has, quite frankly, been dreadful. Difficult. Debilitating. Torture. I no longer had my person, the one who calmed my anxiety and helped me find the light in the darkness. I was a mental illness warrior with him. Without him, I wasn’t.

During this journey, I vented. I ranted. My pen was truly my sword, and I let go of all my anxieties when I wrote them on blank pages. I used anxiety relieving techniques in my writing. I felt calm.

In addition, I talked about my depression. To my journal. To myself. All of the thoughts I was afraid of communicating to another human being, I wrote them down. It felt like talking to an old friend. One who wouldn’t judge. One who understood.

After I finished my journal writing for the day, and my journey was complete, it was as if I had an epiphany. Although it may take some time, and a lot of work, I will be okay. I will arrive at a healthy place mentally.

All in all, journal writing helped me with my mental health.

If you want to read more on this topic, you can do so here and here.

My Journey Continues

journal, positivity, life

My second journey was to the land of doubts, insecurities, and struggles. Due to the pandemic, my dreams are on hold. This caused my doubts, insecurities, and struggles to thrive in this new environment. I couldn’t silence the negative thoughts in my head. You’ll never become a business owner. Your writing isn’t good enough. You’re not doing anything with your life. I picked up my pen.

Once more, the words appeared on the page of my journal naturally, and with a fierce fire. I communicated every single one of my doubts, insecurities, and struggles. As I continued to write, I came to the realization that there wasn’t any truth behind these words. I struck a line across all doubts, insecurities, and struggles. I will start anew.

Beneath the doubts, insecurities, and struggles, I wrote positive thoughts, aspirations, manifestations, and kind words to myself. I felt fresh, reborn almost.

Journal writing helped me discover positivity and kindness.

An Unexpected Part Of My Journey

journal, grief

Eventually, I encountered something unexpected during my journaling journey. I faced my grief. When my grandfather passed away, the sadness within my heart made me feel as if I would explode into a million little pieces. I was missing a piece of myself. Broken.

So, I picked up my pen, my mighty sword.

My pen hovered over my journal. Then, I started writing about the anger I possessed. I directed this anger at God for taking my best friend from me too soon. Why did this have to happen?

As I began to cry, I wrote about the sadness, emptiness, and loneliness. I confessed about how lost I was. How broken. The pen glided across crisp, white paper.

Despite the tears in my eyes, I continued to write. I talked to my grandfather, and told him all of the things I didn’t get a chance to say. It was black words on white paper. Afterwards, I closed my journal. This part of my journey was over… for now.

My Self Discovery After Journaling

journal, self discovery

Overall, I discovered a lot through journaling. I was able to improve my mental health, bit by bit. Also, I found positivity and a way to be kind to myself. Lastly, I grieved and talked to my grandfather.

My take away: Journal. You never know what you’ll discover.

Read also:
Mindful Healing: 15 Grounding Journal Prompts To Alleviate Anxiety
Depression Among African American Women, A Pandemic Of Its Own
This Is Your Sign To Go To Therapy: Self Love 101