Our emotional and physical health is a very important part of each of our lives. In fact, if our emotional health is not good, it's not likely that our physical health will be up to par either. Emotional health is what helps you to reach your full potential; it enables you to work productively and it also helps you to cope with all the stresses of life effectively. It's also difficult to function if your physical health is poor. A little research will show you over and over again the link between emotional and physical health. When you have a healthy emotional state, it’s usually because you are in good physical health.
Want a good way to keep both in balance? Start journaling.
JOURNALING IS A THERAPEUTIC TOOL THAT HELPS
With journaling therapy, which is like writing therapy, the focus is on you; writing down or journaling your internal thoughts, experiences, thoughts and feelings. It can help your emotional and mental clarity, confirming your experiences and coming to a deeper understanding about why you do certain things and think certain things.
This type of journaling can incorporate a review of your physical self. Write down your daily food intake, any aches and pains you might have, supplements or medications you are taking, your sleep habits, time spent outdoors, or any exercise you’ve had for the day. By participating in this type of journaling, you can start to notice areas where you need to improve your physical health. Or maybe you begin to notice a healthy habit that you are doing particularly well that you weren’t aware of before.
The Center of Journal Therapy says that journal therapy is “the purposeful and intentional use of reflective writing to further mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual health and wellness.”
I have been journaling for emotional health consistently (at least 4x per week) for approximately 18 years. I can’t begin to tell you the benefit I have received from this very simple and enjoyable practice. It has helped me understand myself and my emotions on a much deeper level. Writing helps me get “what’s stuck in my head” out on paper.
And more recently, I have been journaling for my physical health. I started this quest after taking 8Greens for several months. I sell 8Greens on QVC and this is one of favorite products at the Q. Why? Because I had noticed such a difference in how I felt. After taking 8Greens daily, it left me wanting to know more about how my physical health was impacting my overall wellbeing. Here are the categories I review daily:
How much sleep am I getting each night? Am I taking naps? Am I getting quality sleep?
What is my total calorie intake for the day? What type of foods am I eating?
Did I exercise today and how much? Did I get some fresh air and time outdoors?
Did I enjoy my work today? Was my workload manageable or am I feeling overworked? Do I like my job? Did I take breaks throughout the day?
Do I have any unresolved conflicts or difficult problems that need attention? Financial stress? Am I worried about anything or anyone?
Vitamins + Medicines
What am I taking that might be affecting my overall wellbeing for better or worse?
Am I particularly overwhelmed by home and family obligations?
COMMIT FOR 30 DAYS
Journal about your emotional and physical health for 30 days. Each day, write down your feelings and thoughts. Write down how your physical body feels after your activities for the day. I think you will be amazed at some new discoveries about yourself.
The whole purpose of this type of journaling is to increase insight and awareness in order to promote growth and change; also to further develop the person’s sense of their self.
TIPS TO HELP YOU GET STARTED
Keep your journaling private. Write it in every day so that you can return to see what you have written and your progress.
Time yourself, so that you don’t get writer’s block because you are thinking too much. Just let your writing flow. Don’t criticize yourself too much and just keep everything real.
Be honest with yourself, your feelings, thoughts, and experiences when it comes to your inner thoughts. It is being genuine with yourself.
Try to write every day, setting aside just a few minutes each day.
Make it easy for yourself, keeping pen and paper with you all the time so you can jot down things you think of. Write whatever feels right for you. No particular structure is required, it’s your space to let your words be free and flowing, with no worries about your spelling or what others might think. Digital journals also work. A favorite of mine is Penzu, as it is simple and easy-to-use, and has strong encryption.
Remember it’s your journal and you don't have to share it with a soul. However, if you do want to share some of these thoughts with your loved ones or trusted friends because you don’t want to talk out loud about them, you could.
Journaling helps you to keep order when your whole world feels chaotic. You get to know yourself because you reveal in your journal all your innermost thoughts, feelings and fears. Look at your journaling as your special personal time to relax and de-stress – where you can confide in your ‘trusted friend’. Do your journaling in a soothing, relaxing place; great for the body and mind.
Journal about both your emotional health and physical health. These two sources are directly intertwined.