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Mia Barnes4 min

10 Creative, Practical Alternatives to Journalling

Everyone’s spiritual journey is different, though one common ground is dealing with many thoughts. Ruminations and emotions are a great benchmark of how your soul looks, but it may be overwhelming to bottle it all up. Most people recommend journalling to document those reflections. Unfortunately, it isn’t calming for everybody. Some people stress over finding how to word their thoughts and having to stick to a schedule every day. If you can relate, know that looking for alternatives is more than OK. Here are creative yet practical ways to clear the clutter in your mind and achieve clarity. 1. Try Creative Writing Journalling is quite close to creative writing since they are the same medium. However, the beauty behind the latter is how much freedom you get. There are fewer lines about what’s wrong or not since you can make it closer to fiction, more poetic and so much more. Intention matters a lot in self-expression. About 50% of young people write to be creative, as opposed to the 45.5% who write to express their thoughts and feelings. Try to pick up the pen and take more liberty with your writing. 2. Paint on a Canvas If you want to deviate from text, consider painting. Project your thoughts into an image and aim to bring it out onto a canvas. Whether you choose a more abstract or realistic painting, you can usually get the essence of how you feel afterward. Test out other art mediums when painting feels too difficult. Some people love working with oil pastels and blending the colours together. Others prefer the traditional lead pencil for a monochromatic masterpiece. 3. Play an Instrument Music is also a good avenue to express yourself. Use instruments like the guitar and piano to create a tune that matches your thoughts and emotions. Now's the best time to learn if you don’t know how to play one. You can also explore songwriting and singing during the process. Pouring your thoughts into a melody can highlight your innermost emotions. Perform it to yourself as a form of self- indulgence and catharsis all at once. 4. Have a Voice Note Collection Some people prefer speaking over journalling. Take out your phone, press record and let your thoughts out. Keeping a personal voice note collection can remind you of a time in your life and how you felt. You can also go a different route and vlog instead. Content creators make lifestyle content to share their everyday activities. Take inspiration and film videos to document your experiences and thoughts. 5. Create a Scrapbook A scrapbook is an excellent alternative to journalling. You get a physical keepsake without the pressure of filling in so much information. Print your favourite pictures and paste them on a page to let them speak for themselves. Have some fun with the decorations on the side as well. You can add short blurbs or focus on adding as many stickers per page. Doodling can also be fun to add a personal touch to the scrapbook, which you can fondly look back on in the future.     6. Play Games If journalling is appealing to you because it clears your mind, try playing games. There are tons of single-player games, each with their own worlds. You can wander and ruminate while having a fun experience. Don't feel like using your computer or consoles? Turn to physical games like sudoku, cryptic crosswords or word searches. These activities require brain power, which is perfect when you want to give yourself a mind break. 7. Go Out Into Nature Instead of sitting at a desk, arrange a nature visit. Being in green spaces enhances sleep and boosts happiness in the long run. Plus, the ambience is perfect if you want time away from external distractions.   The woodlands are ideal, but you can also try other picturesque sites. For example, a seaside beach is quite comforting. Go during sunset and watch the ocean glitter while contemplating life. Just remember to be safe while going on these adventures. 8. Engage in More Physical Activity Aside from changing your environment, incorporate physical activities into the mix. Exercising can relieve tension in the body and, by proxy, clear out mental or emotional turmoil. Look up a routine or create your own. Sports are also exhilarating. You can go golfing alone or with a group. Water activities like swimming and surfing are also quite soothing. 9. Talk to a Friend Some people find journalling challenging because they’re talking about themselves. Sometimes, you want someone’s input or reassurance that everything will be alright. Consider talking to another person about what you’re going through. Everyone has their preference with who they turn to. About 50% of Brits turn to their partner when they’re struggling with their mental health, while 39% confide in their close friends. You can also turn to a general practitioner to sort out what’s going on in your mind. 10. Practise Meditation Journalling is viewed as an outlet for clearing up thoughts and emotions. However, perhaps the problem isn’t with expressing them. Rather, you’re struggling to accept all these reflections, especially the more negative ones. Pick a corner of your home to sit still and close your eyes. Meditate on how your mind and body feel. Take your time and breathe. Mindfulness may be the first step to expressing your deepest ruminations. Express Yourself Beyond Your Journal Every person will have their own medium to destress, so don’t overthink how you can express yourself. Choose what appeals to you and go from there. What’s important is processing your thoughts and achieving relief from it.   Another article from Mia on the Psoas can be found here.

Mia Barnes

Mia is a professional health and wellness writer and the Founder of Body+Mind Magazine. Mia enjoys sharing articles on the transformative power of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness. Mia’s goal is to provide actionable advice to help her readers achieve more balance in their daily lives. You can learn more about Mia and Body+Mind on and Instagram.

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