Listen To Your Therapist And White Your Heart Out

It is not all day that you feel happy and fulfilled. There are times that you can become so sad and terrible for no reason. There are cases that you don’t want to talk to other people because you think you wouldn’t have anything to say. Don’t worry. Everybody feels that way too. It’s not just you. However, in times like these where people’s comforts are not needed, and you wished to be alone, there is one thing you can always do. That is to write everything you feel. In writing, you won’t entirely need much. Your friends and family do not need to know you are journaling. And if in case you want your privacy that much, you don’t have to let your therapist read it.

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What Can You Write?

You can write anything in your journal. Whether it is a sad and exhausting moment or a happy one, it doesn’t matter. As long as you are comfortable expressing yourself, that is okay. Honestly, you do not need to find a topic for each day of writing. You can even jot down quotes that express your current mood or make a list of things that you are thankful for the day. You can also write stories and let your imagination out. You can create poems and compose a song. You see, the idea of writing is endless. So you don’t entirely need to put too much pressure on what is applicable or not.

Why Would You Need It?

There is no exact reason why you have to have a journal. Psychotherapist and yoga therapist Dr. Lynn Somerstein, RYT said “[I] use journal writing techniques with people who have difficulty processing their thoughts.” Truthfully, it is still your choice and preference. But the reason why most mental health expert often convinces you to do it is because of the emotional and psychological development you can get from journaling. A lot of mental health professionals believe that writing can potentially make you change your outlook in life. That is because it is something that will help you on your journey. Surely you feel comfortable writing and reading your thoughts. Sometimes it can make you laugh, but most of the times, it can make you realize the things that are worth your attention.

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What’s In It For You?

Writing your emotions in a day to day basis is something that takes courage. That is because not all people are open about how they feel. Some are scared to know the damaging parts of their emotional and mentally distraught. Perhaps that is why they do not often want to talk about it and choose not to care at some point. But in journaling, there is the passion of getting deep into one’s self. It becomes advantageous because it allows you to answer questions concerning your values, importance, vision, goals, and purpose in life. From there, you begin to think outside the box.

Why Should You Start Writing?

If you will agree, it is more likely appropriate to say that there are so many things that you can do to discover yourself. It doesn’t have to take a while to understand how you think, behave, and respond. Journaling is something that can make you realize that you are not what you think you are, or maybe more than what you think you can become. You should start writing because it allows you to formulate your dreams and understand your thoughts and emotions. Not only for the advantage of others but to help you grow as well. Maud Purcell, a psychotherapist and journaling expert, “While your left brain is occupied, your right brain is free to do what it does best, i.e. create, intuit and feel. In this way, writing removes mental blocks and allows us to use more of our brainpower to better understand ourselves and the world around us.”

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What’s The Importance Of Expressing Yourself?

The truth is, getting disconnected from yourself creates damage in your life. You get to experience burnout because you are caught up with different task every day. Aside from that, you are also prone to emotional struggle due to social stress, family expectations, relationship issues, and so on. But when you try and express yourself the way you understand, you will realize that the art of writing your emotions can tap into your state of self-awareness. (“Self-awareness is the key cornerstone to emotional intelligence,” according to psychologist Daniel Goleman.) Your mind, body, and soul get reconnected. There are calmness and peace that you will find from the thoughts of perfectionism and pessimism.

Take Away

Writing a journal is not compulsory at all. The truth is, it is, in fact, a hobby. But what’s good about it is its ability to bring you the kind of mindfulness you deserve. Because with all the toxicity you will find in this world, you can never have enough time to think about things thoroughly. But with journaling, sitting down and writing on your notebook secure ease to a cluttered mind.

Journaling For Depression, Anxiety And Stress (Psychologists Recommend)

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Sometimes, when we think about the word “journaling,” it brings us back to our adolescent days wherein we would write in a notebook about our day and on what we feel. We talk about our friends, what happened during our day and of course, talk about the person we like. It is all so cheesy, and we tend to shy away from it now that we are adults. But if you ask psychologists, they would recommend that you still go on with doing it now for therapeutic purposes. Kyle Bourassa said, “To be able to create a story in a structured way—not just re-experience your emotions but make meaning out of them—allows you to process those feelings in a more physiologically adaptive way.”

Continue reading “Journaling For Depression, Anxiety And Stress (Psychologists Recommend)”

Journaling Your Way Out Of Mental Illness

The most common misconception about journaling is the idea of comparing it to keeping a diary. Yes, people write anything in it such as their anxiety, depression, and even happy moments. That’s because they assume that the process merely follows knowing what things to write. That the details of it should have a certain flow, and that everything about it should have to make sense. However, contrary to that belief, that’s not what journaling is all about. It does not always have to be like that. Though in most cases, it can be for some people.

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The Essence Of Journaling

The reason why journaling is an excellent help for emotional and mental wellness is due to its potential use on individuals benefit. That includes having a place to vent and have the means to process through all the things that are happening in their lives. According to Maud Purcell, LCSW, CEAP “Scientific evidence supports that journaling provides other unexpected benefits. The act of writing accesses your left brain, which is analytical and rational. While your left brain is occupied, your right brain is free to create, intuit and feel.” It could be some memorable experience that occurs in the past, or it can be the things that are currently happening today. Journaling allows people to have a place to talk about their feelings toward the whole experience. Therefore, some individuals prefer to write it out like a story or letter form. However, some people don’t do that. Some individuals like to keep a bullet form of journaling. It has something to do with specific things that happened in their lives. There is no elaboration on such thing, but there’s a secured emotional attachment to the written subject. There are also some individuals who use journaling to track down their mood and mental health. It is like writing down two or three emotions they felt in a day. That’s because they find it necessary to note how they are doing so they can manage their improvement towards their wellness goal.

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There’s entirely no limit on what people can write in a journal. The whole goal of journaling is to have a place where individuals share their thoughts, feelings, and experience. It doesn’t matter if it’s short or long, as long as there’s a full expression of what people need to vent out. Because when there is a basic tracking, and there’s a lot to share, it eventually comes out of the chest. There’s a relieving sense associated with expressing one’s emotional crisis. Another great thing about writing down what’s happening and how individuals are feeling is the power of creating solutions out of the blue. That is because when people see nothing but fears, worries, frustrations, and agitations, they become aware of finding ways to remove it from their system. As stated by Tamara Hill, MS, LPC “I often provide journaling to my own clients who find it difficult to verbalize what bothers them. The tool has proven beneficial not only to them but also to myself, as I learn a great deal about the “internal, hidden world” of the client.” That explains why some people write down their problems in a journal and immediately pay attention to upsetting themselves. With that, there comes an entirely different writing flow that takes place.

Why Some People Don’t Use It

The reason why some individuals are not into journaling is due to the pressure of telling a story. There’s a pressure of expressing one’s emotional and mental state in an accurate and detailed way. These people often focus on how things should start as well as how it should end. They don’t look into the reality that maybe they don’t have all the details of the full story of their lives. That perhaps, the things they have to write are the ones they only have to experience. As much as others see journaling’s benefit to people’s emotional and mental health, it doesn’t entirely work for everybody. Not all can benefit from it because they have different needs. Some people are not good at expressing themselves even in a written form. There are instances where thinking about previous emotions can be hard and uncomfortable to do. Most people are also not aware of what’s going on with their mental and emotional health. Therefore, it creates an issue instead of a solution.

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People often forget how bad and good things are going. There’s too much of everything that not all of them can pretty much handle their own emotional and mental needs. Therefore, keeping track in a journal and jotting vital things down can help individuals stay on point with their overall dilemma. And as stated by Sharon Martin, LCSW “Journals aren’t just for teenagers trying to hide their private thoughts from their parents’ prying eyes. Journaling is a helpful therapeutic tool. It’s not going replace mental health treatment from a qualified professional, but it can be a useful addition or way to accelerate your healing.” Not only it allows focus, but it also helps in bringing clarity to one’s mental function.

Details On The 2016 Atlanta Photojournalism Seminar

The 2016 Atlanta Photojournalism Seminar is one of America’s longest-running photojournalism conferences up to this date. Its origin was dated from 1973. It was led by photojournalists from all over different newspapers, magazines and wire services. The members’ goal is to promote the standards of photojournalism with the use of yearly educational conferences and staging photography competitions graded by professional photographers and keen editors in the field of reporting.

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Some renowned speakers in the field of photojournalism interact attentively to audience and attendees. They aim to impart their experiences in both areas of photography and journalism. Some of them are known magazine and wire service photographers, Pulitzer Prize winners, Influential directors of photography, and educators in photojournalism.

Seminar Contents

The seminar offers numerous information, advantages, and assistance to those aspiring photojournalists and its attendees. There are photography workshops that aim to help develop aspiring photographers regardless of their skill. It imparts photography techniques led by some of the most promising photojournalists. People also enjoy video workshops as well. It is for individuals who seek advancement to video editing and making skills. The talented video makers in the area of journalism make their suggestions and insights in this expertise.

There are also vendor displays in the event. There are state of the art and latest models of gears on photography and videography. People can also join the annual photography contest awards where the winners can win prizes of more than $5,000. As for the freebies, Nikon and Canon provide free checkups and cleaning services for two photography equipment per individual. There’s also a portfolio review to help everyone review their work and understand where they need improvements.

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The seminar is a two-day emersion for everyone and is open for all enthusiasts and attendees. Every professional, students, enthusiasts, and teacher are there to celebrate and bond together in the event.

Tips And Tricks For The Aspiring Writer

Writing is a bit like a rollercoaster ride—full of ups and downs. One second, you could be pumping out a thousand words, and the next, you’d be struggling to write a measly sentence. Everyone in the entire family of writers deals with the problem that is the lack of motivation.

That is only one of the many problems that might hinder an aspiring writer. If you want your work to get published, it’s going to take a lot of hard work and perseverance. Whether your piece is prose, poetry, non-fiction, or any other form of written media, these tips and tricks will help you keep those words flowing.

Read, Read, Read

We have heard this many times, but only because it’s true: A good writer reads. It’s essential to read a lot because this helps writers acquire a good grasp of their chosen language. Words are what you use to entice people, so it would be wise to learn how other people do it.

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And writers don’t just read within their chosen genre. They go above and beyond it so that they find the trends and patterns within their style as well as others. Ultimately, reading anything and everything helps one become a more well-rounded writer.

Know How To Get Past Your Writer’s Block

Like we said at the beginning of the article, the lack of motivation is a problem for every writer. You could have everything planned out and still struggle to put out even a single sentence. A good writer must know how to regain their motivation—and quickly!

Perhaps a break from writing will help clear your mind. On the flip side, maybe staying focused on the blank page is what’ll get the ball rolling. Of course, this will differ from case to case and writer to writer. The trick is knowing what you need when you need it.

Write As Much As You Can

Most people would tell you to write every day, but this isn’t a necessity. Writing everyday simple isn’t doable for everyone, especially those with busy schedules. What’s important is that you write when you can and make that a habit.

Set aside some time every week for your writing and stick to that schedule. Doing this ensures that you get an ample amount of practice. It also gets you accustomed to writing on set times of specific days. Getting into this routine might make it easier to pump out words.

Abide By The Rules Of Grammar

Grammar is important in any genre of writing. Misunderstandings and incomprehension are the consequence of pieces with incorrect grammar.

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To minimize grammar mistakes in your work, make sure to proofread your work. Edit it ruthlessly. Read it twice—thrice if you have to—and leave no sentence unread. If you think your editing skills aren’t enough, you can make use of online grammar tools. Alternatively, you can have someone you trust do the proofreading for you.

Make Use Of Dictionaries And Thesauruses

In writing, certain sentences require specific words. Writers choose their words carefully so that they “fit” the rhythm of their piece and make the most impact on their readers. In this regard, dictionaries and thesauruses are your friends. Learn how to discern when a word “fits” a sentence or not. If it doesn’t seem to belong in the sentence, consult these books and find the word that does.

Develop Your Style

Find your voice. Every writer writes differently. Each has their own set of quirks—both good and bad. These quirks set them apart from the rest. It’s what gets the readers to remember them. Many have said that a good writer reads, but a good writer also doesn’t duplicate other writers. Develop your style and make your voice unique.

Remember Why You’re Writing

If there comes a time that you become tired, frustrated, or exasperated from writing, remember why you do it. You started writing for a reason. Perhaps you started a news blog to voice out your opinions on current events. Maybe you’re writing a story that no one has told before. Or it could be that you’re seeking to finish a scholarly article on a new topic regarding mental health.

Yes, it can be exhausting. When you feel the exhaustion, remember why you started in the first place. More often than not, reminding yourself of this is enough to keep you motivated enough to want to finish.

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Writing can be difficult. Finishing a piece can even be more so. But these tips and tricks are sure to help you. But you can do it. You have to keep at it. These suggestions will not only help you finish your piece but also increase your chances of being recognized and remembered through your works.

But apart from these words of advice, always remember that to become a successful writer, you must persevere. Even when it seems unlikely that anyone will ever read your work, keep at it. With hard work and a lot of skill and perseverance, you can make it.

Good luck, aspiring writer!

Gratitude Journaling (Writing For Mental Wellness)

Gratitude is really about refocusing the way you see and think about things that surround you. According to Ada Gonzalez, LMFT, “Gratitude is a way of seeing. They would allow us to see, to notice, what we can be thankful for. Heights of joy are measured by the depths of our gratitude.” Since it is our human nature to get hooked on the negative stuff easily, many of us find it hard to commit on the positive ones. That is because the worse things in life are more impactful, stressful, and painful. All of those negative things require tons of effort and extra energy for us to be able to survive it. In some unfortunate circumstances, we forget about the many good things that still exist.

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By shifting our focus towards the positive things, we aim to search for the preciousness of life. From there, it starts to change the way we approach things, the way we create decisions, the way we handle personal relationships, the way we appreciate people around us and more. And by that, we try new things that develop that positivity. In this article, we’ll focus on the importance of gratitude journaling since it’s one of the best ways to maintain mental wellness.

How To Start Gratitude Journaling

Gratitude journaling is easy to do. According to Marla B. Cohen, PsyD, “Gratitude is viewed by positive psychology as one of the cornerstones of well-being, and gratitude journaling is widely considered one of the most effective happiness practices you can adopt.” Every night, you just have to list three to five things that you are thankful for each day. There are no limitations on what you want to write in your journal as long it is something that encourages happiness and fulfillment. It can be significant or even small things that perhaps created a change in that particular day. And even though you have the worst moment of your life, find at least three things that made you smile. Try hard to think about the good and positive stuff. Sometimes it could be an object that means a lot to you or could be the people that showered wonderful care and love.

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Personally, it’s incredibly beneficial to write as detailed as possible with what it is that you are thankful for in that instance. So instead of writing down your gratitude on food, try at least be specific on “why” you are valuing it. You can base in on your previous encounter or other people’s experience as well. As long as it made you realize how truly grateful and how fortunate you are for having food at your table, you can deliver a proper technique in gratitude journaling.

There is no denying that not all days are the same. Sometimes, you will experience the worst of the worst. But it’s excellent to try and shift the way you think and keep your mind away from those things that mentally and emotionally hurt you. There will be a time that you won’t appreciate the simple pleasures because you’re stuck in the negative side, but always remember that nothing stays as is. Maybe you find yourself suffering today, but tomorrow you will not.

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If you are attempting to create more positivity in changing your outlook, attitude, and life, writing is the best thing to do. According to Priscilla L. Rodriguez, LMFT, “I’m a huge advocate when it comes to writing in a journal as a way to manage stress and as a way to engage in gratitude. Journaling also forces you to slow down and to concentrate on what you are experiencing.” It is an incredible opportunity to enumerate the things that matter to you. By doing this, it ensures that are throwing your overall wellness into positivity.

Mental Wellness: Follow These Bipolar Blogs

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 If you want to read about real-life stories of people with Bipolar disorder, then these blogs are the sites to follow:

 

Purple Persuasion

Charlotte Walker battled mental health problems for 25 years and created a blog called Purple Persuasion as a way to deal with her relapses and to help other people who have bipolar disorder too. According to Colleen King, LMFT, “Living with bipolar disorder can create significant challenges in just getting through each day.”

 

The blog offers a safe space for Charlotte and people similar to her to learn more about their mental health problems and as a way to connect with other people who have the same issues or related mental health problems.

 

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Some of the posts in her blog include an analysis of her visits with her psychiatrists, as well as posts that other bipolar people can relate too.

 

Bipolar Burble

The Bipolar Burble is managed by Natasha Tracy, a social media consultant, and an award-winning writer too. Natasha has had bipolar disorder since she was 20 years old and ever since the Bipolar Burble has become a place wherein she can express her feelings about her condition as well as narrate her experiences.

 

The blog gives factual information based on evidence of mental illnesses. It also offers insights and details about bipolar disorder all while providing the community, which is filled with people with mental health problems. It contains posts like how to self-sooth when experiencing bipolar disorder pain.

 

The Bipolar Blogger Network

Back then, two friends felt like there were not enough networking options for people who are experiencing different types of bipolar disorder. As a result, they decided to create the Bipolar Blogger Network.

 

The Bipolar Blogger Network aims to give people with bipolar disorder a way or platform to share their experiences with the mental health issue or their stories on how their disorder affect the people around them.  However, not all can write in the blog as only bloggers with the talent and knack for writing as well as those with the disorder and experiences with the issue can only write in the blog.

 

Pax Nortona

Joel Gazis-Sax on the other hand, uses his blog, Pax Nortona, as a way to share his personal experiences and stories that he gains while working and traveling despite having the bipolar disorder. But Joel isn’t the only one who is responsible for the blog. His wife Lynn also helps in managing it. Together, this dream team and their cat has created an excellent blog for those with bipolar disorder.

 

Joel and his wife are also the co-founders of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance of South Orange County. According to Danna Costa-Sahs, PsyD, “Depression is a serious mental illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act.” The blog contains posts about Joel’s stories and tips on being yourself in a world that wants you to change.

 

Bipolar Beat

 

Psych Central is a trusted website ran by mental health professionals. This independent social network for people with mental health problems or people interested in mental health also has the bipolar blog called the Bipolar Beat.

 

Two people who write posts in the blog are Dr. Candida Fink, a psychiatrist, and Joe Kraynak, an author. Dr. Fink is an expert pediatrician, specifically in pediatric bipolar disorder. Kraynak, on the other hand, writes about his experiences living with the mental health issue and with his partner.

 

Some of the articles in the blog include perspectives about bipolar drugs and weight gain, differentiating manic and hyperactive, and other tips that can help bipolar people sleep better. “Antidepressants, mood stabilizers and atypical antipsychotics are the most common contributors to weight gain.”, says Saundra Jain, PsyD.

 

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With all these blogs recommended, you have a plethora of blogs that you can check out to either help with your disorder or learn more about bipolar disorder. Having bipolar disorder is difficult, but that doesn’t mean it should define you. These blogs can be one of the ways to help you beat it.

A Quick Guide to Choosing Blog Niche

Certain things are needed for you to take into consideration when it comes to creating your blog. The first thing that you have to factor in is the blog niche. It pertains merely to the specific classification that you want the blog to belong. Without determining the particular topic, it will be impossible for you to move forward with the blog creation. Once you decide the niche, it will become easier to choose the domain name for the site.

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