Journaling for Mental Health


Do you want an easy, no nonsense way to practice better mental health? What you’ll need; a pen and a piece of paper. That’s it! Let’s talk about journaling.

Why You Should Journal

Talking to yourself helps identify your pattern of thoughts and behaviours. Maybe there’s an area in your life where you refuse to accept that you are human, and you will make mistakes.. Or you spend too much time thinking about how to perfect the lives of those around you, an impossible task. Journaling helps you lay out all of your worries and anxieties, and delve deeper to find the source. It allows you to prioritize the things you think about and the things you spend your time on. Journaling also helps you to speak with yourself as you would a friend. Empathy and compassion are not always easy to muster up for ourselves, but journaling can change that.

How to Journal

There is no incorrect way to do this – although I can’t recommend invisible ink. It can be an irregular activity to start with. Simply start writing whenever you have the time or are feeling particularly stressed. There are many different ways to journal. The writing itself doesn’t have to be structured. A stream of consciousness, literally writing your thoughts down as they come to you, is a very effective way to journal. But, it can also be structured. Give yourself a journaling prompt and see how you like it! Journaling doesn’t even have to be writing! Sketch how you’re feeling or draw how your day’s been going. No one has to see it but you, so do whatever feels good. And, should the mood strike you, go back and look at what you’ve written. See how you feel about it. What does it make you think?

By Sholape Tinubu

For more information on the positive mental health effects of journaling, please click here.

For more information on the different ways to journal, please click here.

For a list of journal prompts, please click here.