This blog post helps to add additional steps to your personalised anxiety journal. It accompanies the previous post on creating your own personalised anxiety journal template. That post will show you how to create your anxiety journal and how to personalise it just for you. This post gives you additional steps that you might like to incorporate into you anxiety journal.
So you might like to go and read the other blog first. Alternatively if you already have an anxiety journal then this post will give you some additional ideas of exercises and practices to create a fuller journaling experience that is personalised for you.
We also have other anxiety-related resources available to read. The total list is:
How to journal and create positive affirmations for anxiety
How to create a personalised anxiety journal template
Unveiling new layers to your personalised anxiety journal
How to be kind to yourself: Journal prompts for anxiety
How to manage stress with journal prompts for stress and anxiety
5 powerful journal therapy ideas to heal anxiety and trauma
- Gather or create Journal Prompts and Resources
- Incorporate Self-Care Elements
- Customise for Daily Use
- Seek Professional Help and Additional Support
- Reflect and Make Positive Changes
- Review and Update
- Incorporate a symptom tracker in your anxiety journal template
- Incorporate a gratitude journal in your anxiety journal template
1. Gather or create Journal Prompts and Resources
Compile a list of journal prompts that resonate with you and address your specific needs. These prompts can help you explore feelings of anxiety, negative thoughts, overwhelming emotions, and other areas you want to work on.
Here are some journal prompts to get you started, but look out for your own prompts online or in books that resonate with you and help to trigger useful thoughts:
- Describe your current emotions. What are you feeling right now? Try to be as specific as possible.
- Write about a recent situation that triggered your anxiety or overwhelmed you. What thoughts and emotions arose from that experience?
- List three negative thoughts that frequently occupy your mind. Examine each thought and challenge its validity. Can you reframe these thoughts in a more positive or realistic way?
- Reflect on your biggest fears and anxieties. What is it about these fears that makes them so overwhelming? How do they affect your daily life?
- Describe a time when you successfully managed your anxiety or overcame overwhelming emotions. What strategies did you use? How did you feel afterward?
- Write a letter to your anxiety or negative thoughts. Address them directly and express how they make you feel. Ask them questions and try to gain a deeper understanding of their origins and purpose.
- Identify any recurring patterns in your anxious thoughts or overwhelming emotions. Are there certain triggers or situations that tend to provoke these feelings? How can you better navigate or cope with these patterns?
- Write about a self-care practice or activity that helps you alleviate anxiety or overwhelming emotions. How does engaging in this activity make you feel? How often do you make time for it?
- Explore the physical sensations that accompany your anxiety or overwhelming emotions. Do you notice any tension, changes in breathing, or other bodily responses? How can you use this awareness to manage your emotions?
- Reflect on your support system. Who are the people in your life you can turn to for help and understanding? How can you communicate your needs to them effectively?
Journaling is a personal and introspective process. Take your time with each prompt, allowing yourself to explore your thoughts and emotions openly and honestly.
2. Incorporate Self-Care Elements
To support your overall well-being, include elements related to self-care in your template. This could involve space for morning routines, positive affirmations, or reminders to engage in activities that promote physical health and self-love. Tailor these elements to suit your own life and preferences. This blog post, Wardrobe Journaling and self care, covers self care and what you wear and what you think about yourself.
3. Customise for Daily Use
Ensure your anxiety journal template is designed for easy and consistent use on a daily basis. Consider leaving space for date entries and encourage reflection on your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Leave room for additional notes, reflections, or brainstorming as needed.
4. Journal around Seeking Professional Help and Additional Support
Remember that an anxiety journal template is not a substitute for professional help. If you’re experiencing severe anxiety symptoms or mental health issues, seek guidance from a qualified therapist or counsellor. Consider adding a section in your template that encourages seeking professional help and provides resources for further information. For example if you are undecided between seeking professional help and dealing with your anxiety symptoms yourself, you could keep a simple tracker for which days you feel you should take professional advice and which days you feel that you can deal with it alone. Then you can look back over a month and be able to track your thought process much better.
5. Reflect and Make Positive Changes
As you use your anxiety journal template, regularly reflect on your entries and identify patterns, triggers, and areas for improvement. Use this self-awareness to set long-term goals and create action plans for positive change. Remember that small, consistent steps can lead to significant progress.
6. Review and Update
Periodically review your anxiety journal template to assess its effectiveness and make any necessary updates. Adapt the template to meet your evolving needs and incorporate new practices or techniques that you discover along your journey.
By creating an anxiety journal template tailored to your specific needs, you can harness the power of journaling as a powerful tool for managing anxiety, promoting self-reflection, and achieving personal growth. Embrace this great idea and begin your journey towards a healthier, more balanced life.
7. Incorporate a symptom tracker in your anxiety journal template
Incorporating a symptom tracker in your anxiety journal template can help you gain valuable insights into your anxiety patterns and identify triggers. Designate a dedicated section where you can record and track your anxiety symptoms on a regular basis. Include categories such as physical sensations (e.g., rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath), emotional states (e.g., restlessness, irritability), and cognitive experiences (e.g., racing thoughts, difficulty concentrating).
Use a rating scale to assess the intensity of each symptom, allowing you to monitor any changes or trends over time. Tracking your symptoms can provide you with a clearer understanding of how anxiety manifests in your body and mind, enabling you to develop effective strategies for managing and reducing anxiety.”
8. Incorporate a gratitude journal in your anxiety journal template
Incorporating a gratitude journal into your anxiety journal template can be a wonderful way to shift your focus towards positive aspects of your life and promote a more optimistic mindset. It can help counterbalance anxious thoughts and cultivate a sense of appreciation. Here’s how you can include a gratitude journal in your anxiety journal template:
- Dedicate a Section: Reserve a specific section of your anxiety journal template exclusively for gratitude journaling. This can be a separate page or a designated area within your daily entries.
- Start with Daily Prompts: Begin each day by writing down three things you are grateful for. You can use prompts like “What are three things that brought you joy today?” or “What are three things you appreciate about yourself?” to guide your reflections.
- Be Specific and Detailed: When expressing gratitude, try to be specific and provide details about why you are grateful for each item. This helps to deepen your appreciation and enhances the impact of the exercise.
- Reflect on the Positive: Use the gratitude journal section as a reminder to shift your focus from negative to positive. Reflect on the good things that happened during the day, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant they may be.
- Include a Weekly or Monthly Recap: Consider adding a weekly or monthly recap page to your anxiety journal template. Use this space to summarize the highlights of your gratitude journal entries, noting the patterns, recurring themes, or meaningful experiences that brought you gratitude.
- Get Creative: Personalize your gratitude journaling experience by incorporating visuals, such as drawings, stickers, or images that represent the things you are grateful for. This can add a creative and interactive element to your journaling practice.
- Review and Reflect: Regularly review your gratitude journal entries to remind yourself of the positive aspects of your life, especially during times of stress or anxiety. Reflecting on past entries can also serve as a powerful reminder of the progress you’ve made and the good things you’ve experienced.
Remember, gratitude journaling is a flexible practice, and you can adapt it to suit your preferences and needs. Feel free to modify the suggestions above to align with your own style of journaling and what resonates most with you.
I hope you found this post useful and that there is information in here that you can add to your anxiety journal to help make it more useful to you and bring your anxiety levels to a manageable level. What I have learned with my anxiety is that the more that I address, the more my anxiety reduces. However, getting to the state of being calm enough to address these issues takes time and journaling has really helped with that for me. And I hope it will with you.
Additional blog posts on anxiety that you might enjoy:
Finally, let me tell you a little bit about Wardrobe Journaling. It is the process I have created that helps you understand yourself better through journaling and through thinking about the clothes you wear and your own unique personality. There are lots of Wardrobe Journaling blog posts available on this site. There is also the entirely unique Wardrobe Journaling course. If you want to take a step further into your own self development and self care this is a great, gentle but powerful course to take.
Have a great day!