One-Minute Words: Quick Journaling for a happy mind
As a counselor, I've heard many clients say they just don't have time to journal, but what if I could offer you several ideas on how to start journaling on the fly? Journaling that takes less than a minute. Now, that's manageable. Hang out with me for a couple of minutes and find out how because journaling is therapeutic.
Still, Journaling can be both soul-wrenching and enlightening. But, as a counselor and a journal-keeper myself, it can also be very therapeutic, even changing our mood and attitude.
Journaling can help you cope with unpleasant memories, frustrations, and help you problem solve through the simple art of self-expression and emptying your thoughts onto the paper.
But so often time constraints and fears get in the way
Fears of journaling
The biggest complaint I hear about journaling is that it takes too much time and brings up memories many of us are not prepared for or ready to think about, much less write about.
Another fear is that someone might find the journal, read it, and realize all of your secrets: a fear that truly came to life for one woman in the interesting movie, Thief of Hearts, (1984. This film depicted how others can use and manipulate us when they know our private thoughts.
If you are living with someone who you fear will find and read your journal, get help and find someone to talk to about your relationship and boundary concerns.
Time is not on my side
Sitting down and writing for hours isn’t on any one’s fun list of things to do, unless of course, you write for a living. Feeling like you have to write a book in one journaling session, or at the very least, a long chapter of your sorrows, can seem overwhelming, therefore, creating journal entries in small chunks is the manageable option.
How about one-minute words?
These are one sentence, free-writing thoughts that can depict your mood, hopes, dreams, or feelings of loss for today. These one-liners that can relieve all the expectations and trashcan your fear of journaling by breaking the process into small chunks. One-liners can give you the opportunity to complete several entries per day, and believe it or not, these tiny entries can change your mood.
What about the sadness?
If you’re a first timer and don’t have the follow through for long entries, try the one minute words. Stop fretting that you need to dump your whole past onto the paper.
Take it slow
There are a number of other thoughts you can journal before you bare your soul.
One-liners for your journal can include:
· A list of three things you’re thankful for in this moment (Gratitude is a game changer)
· What you’re thinking about or worrying about right now
· Three fears you have
· Three hopes you have
· One sentence that describes your bucket list of things you are hoping to do one day
· List why you are proud of yourself and note the accomplishments you’ve made (no matter how small)
· Close your eyes and write down everything you can hear and smell and feel (Mindful)
· A list of all the flowers you’d like to plant one day
By now, you’re probably getting the full picture
of how this goes, right? How One-minute words can be completely painless and can start you on the path to manageable journaling.
Positive One-minute Words
Changing negative thoughts into positive thoughts change the brain, lessen your risk of Alzheimers and depression, and increases ability to think and reason.
Allowing yourself to seek out the positive in your current moment through self-examination, including taking a peek into your desires for the future can set you on a path of positive self-talk and create a whole new pattern of seeing the glass half-full rather than half-empty.
In addition to reducing anxiety and depression, another perk to journaling is increased brain power. Kasee Bailey, in her article, 5 Powerful Health Benefits of Journaling, states that journaling can increase memory and comprehension. Wow, who wouldn’t want more memory the next time you can’t find your eyeglasses or car keys, or when you want to remember why you walked into that other room in the first place.
Grab a tiny notepad, dreamy journal or diary or whatever works for you, and start writing down your positive one-minute words today. After all, it’ll only take one minute.
Begin redirecting the negative thoughts into more positive thoughts. (I can, I will, I could, I did).
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. (NIV)
Lori Carol Maloy