Write On Grrrl

Voice of Empowerment. Not reason.

The Magic of Journals. Or Why I've Never Needed Counseling

Friday, December 26, 1980

Dear Diary,

Yesterday was fun! I got Merlin. Santa Claus bought him. I've been sick all today. I need flash bars.

Got to go.

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For Christmas, when I was nine, someone gave me a Diary. Literally. That's what it said on the cotton candy pink vinyl cover, right beneath the illustration of a knock-off Holly Hobbie lying on her stomach in a pinafold dress, clutching a quill pen, while her cat napped beside her.

It should have read: Life Changer.

My supreme emotional health, mental resiliency and balance? No accident. No counseling. No prescriptive drugs. I give all the credit directly to where it belongs.

My journals.

After thirty plus years, eleven completed volumes, with a twelfth in progress, I've recorded a whole lot of amazing stuff. But I'm most proud of the intense self-reflection that's come from writing about the challenges of life, both big and small.

The act of taking a pen to paper provides an opportunity to slow time. It allows you to analyze each situation objectively, from every angle, not just your own. It provides a forum to dig deep to really figure out how you're feeling. It legitimizes your emotions. Journaling gives you a chance to return to the scene of the crime, take back your power and even rework the ending.

And once, you pour it all out on paper? That's when the real magic begins. Those emotions you've worked hard to explore? Turn the page and leave them in the past. Reflect, then move on. Say see-ya-later conflicts. Buh-bye to difficult personalities. Adios to anger, disappointment and sadness. In a few glorious strokes, they've all been, literally, written right out of your life.

Writing is a healer.

Write on.