Some of history’s most influential people had a habit of writing things down. From the musings of John Muir to the journals of Marie Curie and the “Field Notes” of Teddy Roosevelt – these great minds not only provided a history of their legacy, their journals also served a functional purpose. These avid journalists understood the mind is fickle so to keep track of ideas, process their thoughts and record a stroke of genius they knew it was best to write it down and we could not agree more.
Journaling provides countless benefits and can play an important role in leading a successful, happy life. One of the cornerstones to journaling is it aids in processing thoughts and emotions. As a helpful tool in managing anxiety, reducing stress and coping with depression it provides an opportunity to contemplate and observe our circumstances in a way that helps organize thoughts and choose a course of action.
Increased self awareness is another benefit of journaling along with improved decision making and organizational skills. All of which are influential characteristics of successful people. When you write down your thoughts and bring them into focus, it is much easier to objectively contemplate their impact and consider various outcomes. Especially when making life changing decisions like a new job, career change, big move etc.
Through consistent journaling, you can identify behavioral triggers, habits or patterns. Giving you the power of retrospect and learning from the past. Journaling is providing yourself the opportunity to review your past self and identify opportunities for improvement or choosing a different course of action in hope of an improved outcome.
Finally, you increase the likelihood of accomplishing your goals when keeping a record, focusing on them regularly and tracking your progress towards achievement. Not to mention, by consistently keeping track of your progress, you can also determine if any adjustments are necessary to keep you on target.
After all of that, it is no wonder why as financial coaches we are big fans of this habit. Here is how we see it.
The healthy processing of thoughts and emotions can hinder the urge to self soothe with “retail therapy”. Self awareness is crucial for making responsible future focused decisions. Discovering your spending triggers and learning from your financial history is crucial for moving forward, and focusing on your goals regularly is paramount to progress.
So not only is journaling an easy habit to adopt and an inexpensive investment. It has big returns your mental health, personal relationships and career – and can also help you on your journey to financial freedom.
Do you keep a journal? If so, what do you like to journal about? Let us know in the comments below!