Journaling can give us the freedom to express ourselves in many different ways. Whether it be through writing prose or poems, drawings, or even just picking up a pen or pounding a keyboard until you get some of those feelings out, keeping a journal can be a healthy way to combat stress. With the freedom to express yourself completely at your disposal, journaling can be a powerful aid to begin the healing process.
But where can you start? How does retelling your story help you? Here are just a few benefits of the healing process of journaling:
Your journal offers an unbiased and supportive ear.
It can be difficult to talk about what has happened, but sharing to your journal over time can make the heap of feelings become a little bit lighter piece by piece. Your journal will not criticize or offer advice. Your journal isn’t going to grow legs and go anywhere. It is right there, solely for you. It is ready to listen when you are ready to speak to it.
It can be a helpful processing tool.
Recording events that transpired or recounting abuse and reactions can help us think clearly, especially by placing distance between you and the traumatic event.
It can help with legal action.
If legal action occurs, it will be a resource and a timeline of what you went through. After getting everything out, you can go back and sort through those events to be able to tell your story to officers and other legal officials should that time come.
Expressing gratitude or writing positive affirmations can help you attempt to see the good things that are to come.
Whether it be from fleeing an abuser, cherishing friends who have helped you through a difficult time, or even just a positive reminder that you are a survivor and you are far stronger than you give yourself credit for.
You have the freedom to tell your story through your first hand experience. Tell your story as you feel it. Don’t worry about anything being structured in the beginning, it’s your journal and you can go back and edit if you wish. You can even chose to write your story to someone, whether it be a friend or family member you trust, or even to your abuser. When you recount your story, remember what you can take from it. Whether it be how to recognize abusive behavior in your significant other, or learning that you are worthy of love and respect. Try not to be too critical on yourself, after all, you did the best you could in difficult circumstances. Feel free to include inspiring quotes, images, or anything that makes you smile and gives you hope. You are strong and brave, and you are making progress each day.
To reach out for more help, HCWC provides support and counseling to victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual abuse and child abuse. Learn more here.