The many benefits of journaling

 I believe a journaling routine as part our personal wellbeing activities can help us build a creative connection both with ourselves and the world around us, increase our happiness and support our passage through daily life.

Since I started focusing on writing, both fiction and journaling, I’ve experienced so many positive changes that I now take every opportunity to find out more about how these activities can be used to enhance our daily lives.

I started Elle Turner Creative because I’m on a mission to help us bring more fun, creativity and beauty into our lives through journaling. I've long believed a journaling routine as part our own personal wellbeing activities (the term I use instead of "self-care") can help us build a creative connection, both with ourselves and the world around us, increase our happiness and support our passage through daily life.

As well as the personal benefits I’ve found because it’s “my thing”, writing has been proven to have health benefits depending on the type of writing you do. Hooray for that!

Science says…

The most quoted study I’ve seen when it comes to talking about health benefits is the one carried out by James W. Pennebaker. He looked into expressive writing, writing about emotional episodes in your life, and the effect this activity had on participants afterwards. His study showed the act of articulating feelings on paper had a positive impact on both physical and emotional well-being, including helping with stress, anxiety and depression.

Pennebaker’s study gave rise to a number of other explorations into the health benefits associated with writing. His book, Opening up by Writing it down (co-written with Joshua Smyth), presents a compelling case for writing as a method of enhancing well-being, both physical and emotional, supported by the findings of numerous studies over the past 30 or so years. 

And, to me, this makes so much common sense too. A journal provides an open, confidential, non-judgemental space for us to dump, and then order, the thoughts in our head that, if left to swim around untended, may become muddled, lost, or grow into bigger concerns than they need to be.

What health benefits have been found?

I’ve linked to some interesting articles below on the topic (the pros and some cons). Reduced blood pressure, a better immune system, enhanced psychological well-being and improved memory are just some of the health benefits that have been cited for putting pen to paper and committing words to a page.

What I’ve found…

In my own experience, journaling has been a very effective way for me to navigate worries and upsets. It does resonate with me, however, that in some situations it can make some personality types feel worse. I have to take conscious steps not to write myself round in circles, but instead identify what I need to do to change a situation and then do it.

What I do most of the time is not expressive writing, because I’m not concentrating on emotional episodes particularly, but I still find it so beneficial. Writing is my path to expressing and developing my creativity, working out what I want to do with my life and business, and I’ve personally experienced the emotional benefits of doing so too.

With all this as a backdrop, I started Elle Turner Creative because I want to help people enhance their daily life through developing a journaling practice that is creative and most importantly FUN. None of my content will claim medical benefits because I’m not a medical professional and have no medical background. In fact, you’ll get sick of me stressing that you should seek qualified advice if you need help and encouraging you not to be shy about doing so. If you’ve read my story here, you’ll know I’ve needed anxiety medication to support me following my dad’s sudden and unexpected death in 2017. As a result of the medication, I have the energy again to work on my own personal wellbeing practices, of which I find writing and journaling a crucial part.

Would you like to develop a personal journaling practice to express your creativity and inject more fun into your life?

 

Elle Turner creative | On a mission to bring more fun, creativity and beauty into our lives through journaling

 

If that sounds good to you, then let’s keep in touch. The best way is to sign up to join the email community. And, if you feel you’ve not got time to even think about developing a writing and journaling practice however much you’d like to, I’ve got your back there too! When you sign up I’ll send you a free PDF to help you carve out time in your day or week for you. Why not give it a go? And, even better, you’ll be added to Elle Turner Creative’s mailing list so that you receive updates, inspiration, some exclusive content and occasional offers. You can, of course, unsubscribe from updates at any time if you find the emails are not for you. (There’s a link to ETC’s privacy notice at the bottom of the page that lets you know how your personal info is used).

 

Elle Turner creative | On a mission to bring more fun, creativity and beauty to our lives through journaling

 

Further reading

 

Opening up by Writing it down - James W. Pennebaker and Joshua Smyth 

You can write your way out of an emotional funk - Science of Us

'Expressive Writing' is a super easy way to become way happier - Business Insider

Expressive Writing - Psychology Today

Why writing your feelings in a journal isn't always good for you

 

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You can develop a personal journaling practice to express your creativity and inject more fun into your life.Elle Turner creative | Journaling to enhance your life

 



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