How My Journal Became My Best Life Support Tool

I don’t scream into pillows, I prefer to scream on paper.  When I get mad, crazy, angry I let it all out in ink….black pen, red pen, blue pen, gray pen.  My angry scribbles sometimes look like daggers cutting through the page to the core of my emotions and anger of “why isn’t he listening to me!” or sometimes the letters stand tall like soldiers in a controlled fashion of precision and defiance that say “I know I am right!!”  Either way, getting my mental and emotional energy out on paper is a safe way to express me and my inner thoughts.  For 32 years, paper has been the friend I’ve needed to listen to me, hear my complaints, and also be the storybook I’ve written over and over again, until I was finally ready to see its message for me.

* Jenn Journals:

* Today in therapy, I got punched in the spiritual gut by my therapist’s words.  She said to me that I have an internal part of me, a younger self, who is destructive to the things I feel and want the most.  She said that this little girl inside of me will not let me have the relationships I want, that she doesn’t trust people and she tests the limits of other people to the point where she sets it up for automatic failure.  She told me that I am “too giving” and “too nice” and I end up giving away myself, my ideals, and my boundaries creating a dishonest, unequal relationship. 

What is she talking about?  I don’t SEE that AT ALL.  So I guess I have to ask, how can I have an honest, loving relationship with myself when I ……….  WOW.  That above statement was profound.  That wasn’t my intention to write that, I originally planned to say, how can I have an honest, loving relationship with other people and I my hand slipped in the comment about how can I love myself?  I guess my inner wisdom wanted me to know that. *

My journal gave me the platform to really see from a new perspective what it was that I needed to change in my life.  It wasn’t just about other people, it was about me and the relationship to myself, first.  That one word hand of God slip-up in my journal, MYSELF, became my medicine, the first real key to understanding how to heal relationships in my life and it was a major lifeline of true support.  

As a nurse, I know journaling is an evidence based practice for overall stress reduction and provides two benefits of self-knowledge and mental and emotional healing.  It is also a documentation system used to record emotional events, health events, and provides a timeline of healing.  More evidence that I’ve gained from my practice over the years is that journaling is not only a physical tool of pen and paper, it is a spiritual practice used to look within to help define your own hurdles in the process of your self-discovery.  

Journaling involves more than putting thoughts on paper, it is used to ascribe meaning and reflect on awareness of beliefs, values, and self practices.

Journaling is a great way to get real and hold yourself accountable and ensure success because you have your thoughts and life written down, recorded as evidence, to start seeing your patterns, your faulty beliefs, and your outdated ways of thinking.  My main prescription for you in your healing process:  Journal.

Today, the part of you that is injured, gets a chance to write and heal.  I have three questions to ponder for where to start: 

When you are emotionally upset, what the first thing you automatically believe about yourself?

Even if your answer is “I don’t know”, that is a place to start.   That means you believe you don’t know.  That used to be my default answer, but as I spent time with it, it really meant that I was scared to tell people what I thought or that I wasn’t worth anything.  

What is something someone said to you about yourself that you didn’t believe was true? 

Spend 3-5 minutes writing about why that person might have perceived you that way. See what comes out if you write, unfiltered, through that person’s perspective. 

What is something you want to experience that you haven’t yet?

Our bodies hold the key to our wants, giving us clues through our words and emotions.  Words and emotions provide resonance (or vibrations), as they take up residence in our flesh.  What secretly lives in you that you’ve been repeatedly telling yourself about what you want to experience?   Put a timer on for 10 minutes and don’t stop writing as you answer this question.  I then suggest reading it and then waiting a day to read it again, to see any new answers it has for you. 

Journaling never fails to bring me what I need, welcoming the wisdom inside.  If you let your inner injuries talk to you and start journaling, what will it bring you?   

Remember, the key to journaling is an open heart, an open mind, and consistency.   Evidence shows success is not in the outcome, but in the practice.

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Jenn Maronek

Nurse | Blogger | Coach | Author

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