Journaling for Everything (A Health Storylines Challenge)
Here we are towards the end of February, really seems like this month flew by. But here we are with another Health Storylines Challenge. As we make our way toward Easter stress is probably rising for a lot of you. Be it because you’re dreading seeing family members and getting asked the standard questions of if you’re ever going to get better, or you just aren’t a fan of of gatherings in general I hope my challenge helps you no matter the stress.
So something I try to do everyday is journal, but I do it a couple different ways. And you can do all of these things or one of these things it doesn’t really matter as long as you do it.
- General journaling, writing about things that happened that day no matter how small it was. I like to do this so I can look back in a month, six months, however long and see how things have changed in my life and see what I’ve accomplished.
- Important events in my life will get their own separate page (not mixed in with general journaling) and will get their own separate pen color. This is so I can easily look back through my journal for them.
- Journaling my symptoms for doctors appointments.
- And lastly I journal reflectively, I have a book that has a little mini story for each day of the year. after each story has things for you to do such as sit outside or meditate on certain things. I try to reflect on what I read, what it made me think, how it applies to my life right now and so on. Sometimes it’s hard for my to figure out how the story applied to my life and thats okay too.
So I put important events in my physical journal, just in case something ever happens to my Health Storylines app. I write general journaling and reflective journaling in the journal function of the Health Storylines app, but I tend to jot a summary of the other journaling in my physical journal as well. I’m just the kind of person that keeps things written down in multiple different places. Though Journaling of my symptoms I keep solely in my app journal and symptom tracker so I can easily take all of that information to appointments so I won’t lose it.
There are also some benefits to journaling in general such as stress relief, so you aren’t bottling everything up inside. It also keeps your memory sharp and it can help with your mood as well. I’ve noticed when I don’t journal for awhile I’m more moody and depressed. Journaling regularly also helps when I’m grieving as well, be it for my old self or the people I’ve lost. But journaling helps with different things for different people you just have to see what works best for you.
Here are some books I use for my reflective journaling
The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo
This is the main book I use for my reflective journaling. It contains a short story for each day of the year for you to read and reflect on, at the end of each story there are tasks for you to meditate/think on. I read the story, reflect on it and then reflect on the tasks separately. You might not be able to relate every story to your life but try your best and that’s what matters. (This book also is available as an Audiobook)
Kitchen Table Wisdom by Rachel Naomi Remen M.D.. This was actually suggested to me by one of the nice nurses at my Audiologist’s office when my health started declining.
Chicken Soup for the Grieving Soul by Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen
Both Kitchen Table Wisdom and Chicken Soup, help me feel not alone when I feel like I’m drowning in sadness and grief. Reading these stories and reflecting on them helps me understand the layers of grief for who I was and the people I’ve lost. In general it’s hard to explain my thought process for these two books but I think you’ll understand if you choose to reflect on either of these books in your journaling.
But for now just try to figure out what journaling is easier for you to do. And remember you’re not doing the journaling wrong, it’s your journal and no one’s going to see it, so there won’t be any judgement to begin with.
Set aside time purely for your journaling, however you feel the most comfortable and make this a habit. For example I try to journal every night before bed. I also list my symptoms I’ve had into the Health Storylines app at the end of the day as well. But try to make journaling into more of a meditative experience, to wind down and relax.
Happy journaling everyone!
You can sign up for a free Health Storylines account here and then download the app from your app store.
These books are not affiliated with Health Storylines and are my person choices and are in no way sponsoring me to write this post.