I Started Journaling to Help With Anxiety, and This Is the Result

Elinor Block

Welcome to Byrdie UK's Wellness Week. Over the next seven days, you'll get to read about how to make your body, mind and, well, your life more balanced. We know it's not January but wellness has become an all-year-round focus for many and with autumn on the way (read: cold and flu season), now seems like a good time to talk about, not just keeping well but, boosting our wellness from all angles. From the best tech to improve your health to the small tweaks anyone can do to bring you more happiness, we've thought about everything you might want to factor a little more wellness into your life with ease. Today, we're talking about journaling and how it improved one editor's anxiety.



Ever wake up in the middle of the night unable to sleep because your mind is racing? Maybe you find it hard to even fall asleep because you're thinking about the day's events. I know I've done both. Recently, probably because of the warmer weather, I found it even harder. And when I did, I didn't stay asleep for long. I mean, I say it was the warmer weather, but I also know it's because I was feeling more anxious than usual.

Some background: I'm a worrier. I'm a full-fledged hypochondriac, always catastrophise everything and seriously once asked my in-laws to create an underground bunker should the apocalypse come. But while I can usually push my worries aside and sleep (surprising, I know, considering the above), lately I was having more trouble. The thing about anxiety is that you never know when it's going to crop back up again. You could be feeling fine, and then all of a sudden it comes back.

Of course, I'd tried breathing techniques, done a touch of mindfulness and sprayed my pillow with This Works Sleep Spray (£18), but nothing was working. I'm probably not a alone, according to a study last year, anxiety is a bigger problem than depression—more than 8 million suffer from the condition in the UK, with the under-35 set being the most affected.

After googling tips on how to cope (because obviously), I discovered that journaling might be the answer. To really try it out, I decided to start writing down my thoughts for a month and then see how I felt about it at the end of the experiment. Keep scrolling to see how to write your journal and why it could be great for keeping your anxiety in check.

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