Day 4: Become More Aware of Your Thoughts Through Journaling
Recognizing your inner critic and the factors that contribute to its strength is important to defeating these negative influences that can hold you back. This is an important topic we’ve touched upon in our journey so far. However, you may still be unsure of just how to become more aware of your thoughts and feelings. Emotions such as self-doubt are ingrained in us from a young age. Therefore, it can be really hard to notice them when they rear their ugly heads. One way to gain insight and recognition is through journaling. Take a look at how this tool can help you to understand yourself better and to kick negative thoughts to the curb.
Journaling is simply taking a set amount of quiet time to write down your thoughts. This can be with a pen and paper, in a word processing program, through an app, or any other type of electronic medium. You might want to have a fancy bound journal or a particular program to keep your journal in, but neither are necessary. This journaling can be free writing, in which you jot down any thoughts that come into your head. It can also follow specific prompts or exercises meant to provide specific insight. No matter what type of writing you do or how you record your thoughts, the point is to get them out of your head.
The Benefits of Journaling
There are so many benefits of journaling, many of them contribute to gaining awareness and silencing your inner critic. Journaling helps you to connect with mindfulness. You are able to be more present and to recognize the things you’re feeling in this moment, rather than dwelling on past experiences or beliefs. Writing in a journal can also improve your chances of reaching your goals. When you write things down, you begin to see patterns. Your goals become more concrete, rather than mere ideas with no destination. Journaling leads to greater self-knowledge because it allows you to explore your emotions. All of these benefits combine to create a strong arsenal for battling your inner critic.
How to Journal
There’s no one way to journal correctly. The key is to find a routine that works for you and to do it consistently. Many enjoy journaling first thing in the morning as a way to begin their day on a good foot and to release pent-up thoughts. Another option is to do your journaling in the evening before bedtime. This provides a great way to process the day’s events and to prepare for a good night’s rest. Shooting for every day is probably a good goal, as it provides consistency and creates a habit.
Give journaling a try. You may find it helps you to tame that inner critic and to get to the roots of your negative internalized beliefs.