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Holding Hope For the Future Through Simple Journaling Techniques
Recent figures show as many as 41% of people surveyed said they don’t feel positive about the future; and a recent Office for National Statistics survey showed that 21% of us were struggling with depressive symptoms in the first part of 2021.
In light of recent events, and the current uncertainty many of us are feeling, this is as understandable as it is concerning.
We’re going to look at some ways to bring back some positivity for the now and Hold Hope by refocusing on our futures.
All you need is an open mind, a bit of commitment and a pad and pen or app.
PoetsIN have over 5 years of measured statistics that prove putting pen to paper – whatever your creative level – can help reduce symptoms of depression in 99% of people.
So here goes.
A journal is an account of whatever you want it to be. Let’s start with debunking journal myths.
You don’t have to start each entry with DEAR DIARY. Unless that’s your thing, then go for it!
Journals do not have to be a blow-by-blow account of your day.
It doesn’t have to be long. If you don’t have much to say, that’s fine. Some days you’ll have loads to say and there may be others you don’t.
It doesn’t have to look perfect. It’s for no one else’s eyes but yours. If you don’t like your handwriting, there are lots of digital spaces you could use – even your phone!
Now let’s look at what journals can be:
A line, a word, a quote, a song lyric, a thought, emotion, a rant, a scribble, art. It’s endless.
Don’t be afraid to be messy – as we said above, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
The point is that journaling can be anything you want it to be.
What do you need to be able to journal?
A pen or pencil
A notebook or piece of paper
or, if you’re doing it digitally,
A device with access to your digital journal space.
Journaling for better mental health and wellbeing
Journaling is useful to purge pain, anger, stress, and other emotions that leave you feeling wrung out at the end of the day. Here’s our tips for journaling:
1. Set a specific amount of time at the end of the day to journal. 10 minutes is plenty.
2. Write about your day, try to focus less on “action” and more on your thoughts and feelings.
3. Date it – include a time if you want to.
4. Include pictures, quotes, or whatever else you feel relevant.
5. Keep going until you feel like a weight has been lifted. If practiced regularly, journaling can feel like a massive exhale at the end of a long and stressful day.
Rinse and repeat, every day
Hold Hope With Future Journaling
Future Journaling is a powerful way to hold hope and help with worrying, anxiety, depression and more. Used in Hypnotherapy, it helps focus on and create goals that may not have been known or even forgotten.
1. Set a timer for ten minutes or so and imagine it’s a year or two in the future.
2. Imagine you’re sat there, in that time, happily reflecting back on the period and writing as a journal about the great things you have achieved.
3. Enjoy it, use your imagination and revel in the fact that you have achieved all these things. Feel the emotions it creates.
4. Log anything that comes out of the imaginary year or so as goals. You may be surprised.
Rinse and repeat, when needed.
People find Future Journaling an interesting activity because often things come out that they weren’t even aware they wanted to happen or it re-establishes forgotten goals and focus.
PoetsIN have a range of resources available for free. They’re easy to download and will help with all things mental wellbeing. It is as important to invest time in our mental health as well as our physical health. Visit: poetsin.com/resources to get your copies.
Author: Paul Chambers, PoetsIN
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