Affirmation: I am a Journaler.
Why Journal? Why put pen to paper? Is it true that writing makes a difference in one’s health and can even speed up the healing process? What other benefits arise from sitting with a notebook or a pad or perhaps some colored pencils or markers? Are there techniques that help one become a more consistent, insightful writer? These are the questions that arose as I prepared to present Healing through Writing at the 2017 Cancer Survivorship Summit here in Raleigh, NC.
If history is any indication of the importance of keeping a diary, it appears there is little doubt that most successful endeavors were meticulously recorded. In the past an adventurer or explorer never seemed to leave home without a notebook and pen or pencil. Certainly, Lewis and Clarke would not have been able to share every important detail of their expedition if they hadn’t been charged to write down everything that they encountered. Why then shouldn’t we write? Aren’t we all on an adventure? Aren’t our explorations as important as any explorer’s? True, our journeys may take us less out into the world, than in towards our minds, hearts and souls but those may be the journeys where we discover the most relevant truths of our lives.
Free Writing – Put the pen to the paper and just go. Whatever comes to mind. My experience has been that after writing my “stream of consciousness” for a few pages, a gem or two appears towards the end of the entry, not always but enough to make me feel like the time was spent well.