Why I journal – And why you should too

Junior Aleiya Hardy provides insight into how journaling can be therapeutic.

Aleiya Hardy, Reporter

As we near the end of the 2021-2022 school year, it’s common for students to start feeling burnt out, stressed, and mentally exhausted. It’s too easy to just want to give up and accept whatever grade you have now. 

There are multiple ways to combat these feelings, and one way I do this is by journaling. It is the practice of keeping a journal or diary in order to express one’s thoughts. It may not seem that fun or interesting, but it can actually be very calming if you’re willing to try.

The University of Rochester Medical Center talks about how journaling can improve your mood by “helping you prioritize problems, fears, and concerns, [and] tracking any symptoms day-to-day so that you can recognize triggers and learn ways to better control them…” 

I firmly believe that this statement is true. I mean, I’ve been journaling for a while now, and it really has helped my mental health. 

Firstly, it gave me the chance to do something besides stare at a screen all day, absentmindedly scrolling on social media. It also helps stimulate my brain and improve my writing skills. Lastly, though no one was really listening, it felt like I could just rant about my life without judgment. 

It is so comforting, and after being consistent with it for a while, I started to feel lighter and happier. 

Journaling can be done in many different ways. There is no limit on how to format your journal, what you should write about and how colorful it should be. It’s all about how you want the vibe to be. 

The whole point of journaling is to relax your mind and get whatever is burdening you off your chest. It’s especially beneficial if you’re someone like me who has a hard time communicating your feelings to someone else. 

You can talk about your day and what you’ve been thinking about. Or, you can write about affirmations and goals you want to achieve. Some people have writing prompts, which you can look up online and answer the questions that are provided.

If you’re someone who prefers structure and organized writing, you may be more inclined to try bullet journaling.

According to Oprah Daily, bullet journaling “…contains sections to log daily to-dos, keep a monthly or weekly calendar, jot down notes, track both physiological and mental health, and record both short- and long-term goals.” 

This type of journaling can be structured in various ways, and there are all kinds of different videos and templates that you can follow to set up your journal.

Remember – the ones listed above are just a few of hundreds of journaling ideas you can pursue. You can add pictures, drawings, and more to make it your own. 

If you’re a student and relate to the feeling of burnout, stress, mental exhaustion, etc., then maybe you should give journaling a try. The most important thing is having an outlet to express yourself in a healthy way, especially with school taking up so much time in our lives. 

Don’t be so hard on yourself; take your time if you do decide to start journaling. After all, it’s for your eyes only.