As human beings, we value our relationships tremendously. However, that doesn’t take away from the fact that maintaining a healthy relationship is easier said than done.
Before working on relationships with others, it’s important to feel secure with yourself as an individual. This can make all the difference in how you handle situations with either a friend, partner, co-worker or even an acquaintance.
Many people struggle with communicating because they have trouble understanding themselves. Our minds are constantly at work and we can sometimes find ourselves lost in all the commotion. To break through the clutter, it can help to bring these emotions to light by exposing them in a journal.
Below we cover how journaling can help you cultivate stronger relationships with others and a stronger relationship with yourself.
Benefits of Keeping a Journal
Image Credit: USAHS / 10 Ways Journaling Helps Students
Keeping a journal is a great alternative to talking out loud about your feelings. It provides much more of a personal and intimate outlet to confront how you feel and prioritize self-care.
There are countless benefits that can come from consistently writing in a journal. Spilling out your thoughts on paper allows you to be much more aware of your feelings. Throughout the day, our minds can get so cluttered since our brains are always at work. Journaling encourages you to let go of stress and address the thoughts that continuously occupy your mind. This can not only help you boost your emotional intelligence but also improve your memory as the act of writing helps your brain process and store information.
The process of journaling also allows you to self reflect, which can help you keep track of how you’re feeling and of any specific goals you have. You can also pinpoint areas where you think you have room for improvement and create a plan to address how to get better in that particular area. Having a clear idea of what needs to be done will work to replace the feeling of defeat with the motivation to do better.
Journaling can also facilitate healing with things you may constantly struggle with. It’s no surprise that emotions can sometimes get the best of us. If we neglect to address how we feel, it can be very detrimental to our mental health down the line. Emotions and feelings don’t tend to go away very fast. Instead, what happens is they stay hidden until something elicits a reaction. When this happens, emotions may begin to build up and become much harder to control.
Prompt Ideas for Personal Development
You may feel lost on how to start or with what to write about. The following prompts are a few ideas to inspire you when getting started:
- Reflect on how your day went. What went well? What didn’t?
- Outline any goals you have and how you’ve been working towards them.
- What are five to ten things you’re grateful for?
- Write about what has made you happy in the past week.
- Vent on what your struggles have been in the past few days.
- Expand on a dream you may remember from the night before.
- What inspires you right now?
Benefits of Relationship Journaling
Once you have a better understanding of yourself, you can also journal as a way to express your feelings about a particular person. Writing down your thoughts privately can feel more comfortable than discussing any issues directly with another person. Plus, when talking to others about how we feel, sometimes we hold back some of our true feelings to avoid judgment. Unfortunately, doing this only makes it more difficult to understand how we truly feel. Writing in a journal is your opportunity to be completely honest with yourself.
Effective communication is likely to have a positive impact on the well-being of your relationship. For example, when approaching an argument, it can be easy to let your emotions get the best of you. Writing can help you problem solve and resolve conflicts as it’s a great way to organize your thoughts. When you’re filled with anger, you may say things you don’t necessarily mean out of initial instinct. This tends to happen more often when people don’t take the time to make sense of the situation as a whole.
Journaling can help you pinpoint the exact issues you need to focus on and talk about. Communicating is much more efficient when there is a clear idea of what’s bothering you.
Relationship Journaling Prompts
Journaling with a relationship in mind can be a little different than journaling for yourself. You’ll want to write on prompts that can specifically help you with strengthening the relationship. Check out the relationship journal prompts below and be sure to download them at the end.
- What is the best thing your partner brings to your relationship?
- Describe a time you were proud of your partner.
- How has your relationship changed you for the better?
- What do you admire about your partner and why?
- What can you improve in your relationship starting today?
- How does your partner encourage you to be a better person?
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