Journaling is a great way to release everything you’ve been holding on to, especially if you feel there’s no one you can comfortably say things to in real life, often it releases a weight you didn’t even know was hanging on to you, allowing you to see your problems from a fresh perspective.
It further enables you to identify habits and see their effect on your mental health or see your problems from a third perspective so you can interpret them in a new way, it could even allow you to learn new things about yourself and with that knowledge change your behaviour for the better, in a way that will benefit your mental health, rather than subconsciously destroy it.
If you’re unsure how to start journaling, or don’t see how you can just start opening up to a page, there are many pre-written journals you can buy from booksellers like Waterstones, prompting you with questions you’d never think to ask yourself, or may just rather avoid answering. There are also many existing prompts online, bullet journals for example are easy, creative projects that don’t require tons of writing, but can help you get back on track with positive habits. Journaling can also be done in your notes app, just by writing a couple lines whenever you feel you need to. It really is accessible to everyone in many forms and doesn’t need to be reams of pages, a simple mood of the day doodle could also help!
Journalling doesn’t need to be about analysing your thoughts or discovering yourself, it can simply be a book of happy memories, no matter how insignificant, you can look back on when times get hard or when you need a reminder of the good things in your life, as when mental health does become a struggle, the negatives can often drown out the positives.
No matter how you journal, whether it be something you’ll keep forever or something you chuck on the bonfire next November, it doesn’t need to hold a significant purpose, it can provide a private and safe outlet for whatever you need.