Did you know that journaling can benefit you in so many ways? It is more
than just a memory book of your postpartum journey.
Let’s learn how “putting pen to paper” after delivery can be just what you
need as you experience all the ups and downs of motherhood.
What is journaling?
Journaling is simply writing down your thoughts and feelings.
By writing down your thoughts and feelings you can be more aware of them
and are able to understand them better.
Anyone can journal.
It does not have to be grammatically correct.
It does not have to have correct spelling.
It does not have to include fancy words.
It does not have to be neat and legible to others.
This is for YOU!
Write down the thoughts swirling around in your mind.
Write down how you are feeling transitioning to this new role.
Write down some things you are grateful for.
Write down whatever YOU want to!
Guess what? That was journaling!
Research shows that all of the above are benefits of journaling! Not only
has it shown to reduce stress, journaling has also been shown to be
effective in coping with depression or managing anxiety.
Studies in postpartum moms have shown improvement in stress, PTSD and
If the idea of journaling every day seems daunting don’t worry!
Even journaling 15-20 minutes at least 3 times a week can be beneficial.
The proven benefits of this simple process just a few times a week can be
How does journaling actually work to help decrease stress and
improve your mood?
The following highlights how journaling can be effective.
Journaling can help you :
Prioritize your problems, concerns and fears.
Calm and clear your mind.
Release pent-up feelings and stress.
Recognize your triggers by tracking your day
to day symptoms, so you can learn ways to better control them.
Identify negative thoughts, so you counter
with positive self-talk and let go of the negative self- talk.
Create solutions to resolve problems or reduce
your stress by identifying the cause of your stress or anxiety
Appreciate your daily accomplishments, small
There are so many ways to journal. From a few lines of gratitude, to
writing down your feelings and reflecting back with some positive steps.
Use this easy acronym for effective journaling from the Center for Journal
W – What topic? What do you want to write about? What’s
going on? What are you thinking about? What do you need? Name it and put it
R – Review or reflect on it. Close your eyes. Take some
deep breaths. Focus. You can start with “I feel…” or “I want…” or “I
think…” or “Today…” or “Right now…” or “In this moment…”
I – Investigate your thoughts and feelings. Start
writing and keep writing. Follow the pen/keyboard. If you get stuck or run
out of juice, close your eyes and recenter yourself. Re-read what you’ve
already written and continue writing.
T – Time yourself. Write for 5-15 minutes. You can note
the start time and projected end time on the top of the page. You can set a
E – Exit smart by re-reading what you’ve written and
reflecting on it in a sentence or two: “As I read this, I notice—” or “I’m
aware of—” or “I feel—”. Note any action steps to take.
So are you ready to get started?
Remember- it doesn’t have to be perfect. JUST WRITE!
Give it some time to get used to journaling and to reap the benefits.
Why not start today? Here are some topics to get you started:
What surprised me about Motherhood.
Something awesome I did today.
I feel most relaxed when.
What mistakes do you need to forgive yourself for?
Name five qualities you love about yourself.
Take 5 minutes to journal right now. Either right below or with pen and
As always, if you need more support, a MaternalWell specialist can help you
process any thoughts or feelings you are experiencing.