The Journey into the Joys of Journalling

Tuesday, 16 June 2019

Let’s Alliterate, Contemplate, Deliberate and Navigate the world of writing and its many super-powers in the ever-growing world of technology!

Writing (and reading) has been my go-to, my best friend and non-judgemental confidante from as far back as I can remember. I have kept most of my journals as a connection (perhaps) to my more complex, curious, curative and creative self — OR, maybe simply as the act of putting pen to paper slips deeper and deeper into the delicate pages that were once so cherished.

The many poured-over pages — from the pretty, to inspiring, to practical hard and soft covered mediums (some bought with a purpose in mind…and others on a whimsical fancy) remain my connection to every aspect of ME. They have helped me make some sense of my internal dialogue, my coping strategies, my dreams, my aspirations, my epilogues (how I want to be remembered when my invisible expiry date – expires), my fears and hopes and my poetic penchant not to forget my many, many lists and extremely important notes.

Written words were a collaboration between the individual and a specially chosen book; something that we joyfully — yet; somewhat impatiently — anticipated the arrival of in our mailbox from a pen pal, a relative or someone completely unexpected. The act of reading felt just as exciting and rewarding as the prospect of the response that you planned and the connection that always felt inevitable through the act itself!

I find something so deeply comforting in returning to the sealed boxes where they so loving lie, only to pick a random page and assess just how far I have come…or how similar I remain, with a touch more tenderness and love towards me and my unravelling story (bad English anyhoo. myself and I).

A few years back my sister’s and I decided on a collaborative journal project, where we poured our dreams, thoughts, poems and inspirations into the one book that we kept circulating between Brisbane, the Whitsundays and the vault that was the back of my sister’s car (all good intentions), that often had us guessing who had it last. Writing and the joy that it imparted kept us connected in such a deep and integral way and empowered us to share from the sometimes dark to life’s highlights as they were in the moment (life really!) and has kept us now more conscious about making more physical sisterly catch-up time.

I find myself wondering (often); how is it we can encourage out littler folk (own kids, nephews, nieces or kids you come into contact with daily) to feel motivated and inspired to pick up right where we left off? How can they begin to reconnect with their feelings between the pages of a much loved book (instead of numbing and dulling through amazing apps) and know that it is ok, safe, completely free (bar the ornate books) and an amazing creative outlet? To turn to the art of writing (or clicking the keyboard) into a means to access their own thoughts, ideas, self expression, contemplations and confidence into something that builds fire within, passion, awe and wonder of self and their own surrounds to remind them to live life to the very fullest and be amazing (just as they are).

The more practice, the more the act itself becomes a cathartic experience whereby they might begin to experience less judgement of self, more knowledge of who they truly are and understanding that dealing with some big stuff and sweating less of the smaller stuff somehow has the ability to lessen the body and mind drama and put everything back into perspective. It’s always about the bigger picture — of course!

Some of the research into the benefits of a journaling experience for kids includes:

  • Helping your child deal with big feelings
  • Improving your child’s writing skills
  • Enhancing their communication skills (and confidence)
  • Creating Mindfulness (disconnecting from exterior connections)
  • Healing (sweating less of the smaller stuff)

Studies have also shown that the emotional response of journaling can help to alleviate stress and anxiety leaving you feeling happier.

Recently, I stumbled upon an inspiring young lady who used writing and her artistic expression to help her on her own healing journey. Yes, Maris’s story resonated completely with me but we were/are technological worlds apart. It’s about inspiration and helping someone find their way out of a groove, a bad situation or something that you have lived through in a medium that everyone knows (write about it truthfully).

Writing for me has and still is liberating, undiscriminating, motivating, encouraging and revealing and I think that if we can take — just — baby steps towards encouraging this art to live on, what a better place the world might be… might we not sit down at the dinner table more and talk … might we not also take the time to observe one another… become more empathetic, more kind, more generous and downright loving and accepting of one another.

Set our kids up for success by beginning small – a gratitude journal, a dream, a letter and build and keep on building upon their dreams and yours and a more communicative future.

Words will set us FREE… Write On!

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