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Journaling for Mental Health

There are numerous benefits that come from journaling for one's mental health. It can help to alleviate stress and improve individuals' quality of life. Individuals may perceive journaling as something that may be unnecessary or unhelpful. However, effective journaling is a form of self-expression that can help empower people to understand any complex feelings. Effective Journaling is journaling practice that may guide individuals towards meeting goals and varies for each individual. It has also been proven to help clear the mind, create important connections, or reduce the effects of mental illnesses. 

How does journaling play a role in one's mental health? 

Journaling utilizes the application of the left side of the brain. Therefore, while the left hemisphere is occupied, the right hemisphere, also known as the creative side, flourishes and is able to help upon the daily well-being. Journaling has been found to improve working memory, mood, sense of well-being, and so on. There is also research that journaling is helpful for individuals enduring PTSD or a history of trauma. Writing can help with processing emotions or experiences while also creating more awareness towards any unhealthy behavior or patterns in our daily lives. It can also help shift from a negative to positive mindset. 

There is an acronym that may help organize thoughts and topics in a journal. The acronym "WRITE" stands for "What topic, Review/reflect, Investigate, Time yourself, Exist Smart" and can be used as a reflection period prior and after journaling. Effective journaling has been shown to help manage depression. However, it is not a substitute for professional guidance in the case that depressive symptoms are severe, but it can be utilized as one of the forms of treatment. Overall, there are numerous benefits that can be gained from journaling and expressive writing. 

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