5 Reasons You Need To Start A Self Care Journal To Receive Healing And Emotional Wellness

Image of a blue table with a cup of tea in a beautiful floral tea cup with flowers next to it and a stack of books with text overlay saying: 5 Reasons to Start a Self Care Journal

Does how you perceive yourself matter? Yes, my girl! It matters. Your self talk is very important because it determines your future. Starting a self-care journal is a great strategy for personal growth. By journaling you are getting to know your feelings, your thoughts, and your potential. You can then use these journal entries to help you to develop your personal growth goals.

How you feel about yourself and how you talk to yourself are so incredibly important! According to Proverbs 18:21 (NLT), the tongue can bring life or death. This means that you will have what you speak, what you think, and what you feel. The thoughts in our minds and the feelings in our hearts are spoken through our mouths. These thoughts, feelings, and perceptions about yourself are an integral component of your future.

Time to read: 15 minutes

Table of Contents

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How Do You Feel About Yourself?

To determine how you feel about yourself, ask yourself these 4 questions:

  • Am I nice to myself?
  • Would I be friends with me?
  • Would I talk to someone else the way I talk to myself?
  • Do I even like myself?

If you answered no, or even not really, to any of these questions then you can benefit from one of my self care journals. I used to be the absolute worst at loving myself. I lived in constant self criticism. I did not experience any type of personal peace until I was well into my 30s because of my volatile childhood. You can read about my story here.

What Does Your Future Look Like?

To take a look into your future, ask yourself these 4 questions:

  • Where do I see myself in five years? What are my goals?
  • Am I okay with this specific future not happening the way I think it will happen? Why or why not?
  • How do I plan to get to my future?
  • Can I trust God with the outcome and not control it?

Answering these questions will give you a glimpse into your personal growth goals. Goals start with planning but, as Christian women, we also have to be malleable to God’s will and His plan. A lot of times His plan looks different than we thought. This does not mean we do not set goals. I want to encourage you to set and work toward your personal growth goals, pray and ask for wisdom, but also keep an open heart as life unfolds.

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Healing From Self Care Journaling

After overcoming a childhood of sexual abuse and all of the post-traumatic effects, I had to learn to love myself. I was never taught this concept of self-love in any way, shape, or form. It was so foreign to me. To be honest, when my counselor presented to me that I didn’t like myself I laughed. I thought to myself, “No one likes themselves.” Then I found out that it was unhealthy to not like yourself. I had no idea!!

Self hate had become my normal and it was so unhealthy but I was deceived. I thought hating myself was humility and even a good thing because it kept me out of pride. I could not have been more wrong! Self-hate was destroying me. Not to mention it made me very unhappy.

One of the ways I got to know myself was through journaling. My counselor gave me the advice to think about what I was thinking about and then to write down my thoughts. This conundrum had me stumped.

Getting To The Other Side

How in the world was I supposed to get a hold of my own thoughts? I have never even considered this concept. After prayer and some help from Jesus, I was finally able to calm down and focus on my thoughts through journaling. What I thought could not be done (writing my thoughts on paper) became my daily outlet to learn about myself. I ended up loving journaling and valuing the time I spent journaling.

In my journals, I was able to put on paper my deepest thoughts and feelings. It was one of the most eye-opening and life-changing things I have ever done. To this day I still journal regularly. By recognizing and accepting my emotions and then dealing with the pain, I have experienced triumph. Jesus healed my heart and He wants to do the same for you.

An Example Of How My Self Care Journal Helped My Future

Back in my early 30s, I created a personal growth goal to get married before I was 40 years old. In a five year span (from age 32-37) I had only dated two guys seriously and both relationships ended about six weeks after they started. It was rough. I had this dream in my heart to be married but I also made a commitment to God that I would trust Him to bring me my husband (meaning I did not have to pursue my husband but rather he would pursue me). You can read more about my single days in my blog post, “Single and Not Giving Up.”

I was really questioning God in this season of my life. After praying and fasting and I truly felt that God’s will for my life was to be a married woman. I also believed God had put in my heart to have a baby. How was I going to have a baby if I got married after 40 years old? It was really weighing on me and I was so upset about it.

I had to go deep into my heart and see why I felt so rejected and abandoned in this area of my life. I found my answer through journaling. To start, I asked myself, “Why don’t I believe God will come through for me and give me a husband before I am 40 years old?’ I believed God in other areas of my life but why couldn’t I trust Him with this?

Uncovering The Lie

After journaling my thoughts and feelings, I realized that I believed the lie that God would not come through for me because my dad did not come through for me. This lie was put in place in my heart when my dad passed away. My whole life my dad was a pedophile (he sexually abused me) and he was an addict. I had no memories of the sexual abuse until after he had died but I lived daily with the memories of his addiction and all of the pain that it had caused in my life.

My journaling showed me that I thought for sure that before my dad died, he would apologize to me for all the pain he put me through. This apology never happened. My dad died of an aneurysm when I was 27 years old. And, that’s when the lie buried itself deep in my heart. I realized that I believed that if my dad never came through for me then God would never come through for me either.

Wow! I was stunned that this was even in my heart because I had forgiven my dad so many times for the pain he had caused me. But this lie WAS still in my heart and I had no idea until I started writing out my thoughts and feelings. While I was surprised, I was also relieved because I know that Jesus only reveals the deep pain in our hearts to heal it. He is so good.

Holy Spirit Speaks

I repented for believing the lie that God would never come through for me. After that, I forgave my dad for not coming through for me. Then, I forgave myself for believing this lie and I asked Jesus to fill this part of my heart with hope. I also asked Him to help me to wait well on my journey to my husband. Then, I journaled and asked Jesus what He and Holy Spirit had to say about my situation. Here’s what I received:

Rayna, I know you want to be married and you can trust Me with your request. I have the perfect husband for you. He is funny and good looking and he has the most beautiful blue eyes. You will love him as much as I do. I promise you, My girl, that I will bring him into your life in My perfect timing.

After having this encounter with Jesus during my journaling, my perspective changed. Jesus answered my prayer and I was able to hope again. About a year later, when I was 38 years old, I met my husband. We got married about a week after my 39th birthday!

I don’t know if my marriage would have happened before I was 40 years old if I still had the lie in place that God would not come through for me. It is so worth it to go to God with every thought and feeling in your heart. Let Him speak truth to you and set you free.

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

John 8:32,NIV
Image of a blue table with a cup of tea in a beautiful floral tea cup with flowers next to it and a stack of books with text overlay saying: 5 Reasons to Start a Self Care Journal

The Five Reasons You Should Start Self Care Journaling

Journaling creates a safe space for your innermost thoughts and feelings. I recommend writing freely as if no one will ever see your words but you and Jesus. Give yourself permission to feel and get in touch with your emotions.

Reason One: Personal Growth

Personal growth is what happens when Jesus heals your heart. When I set out to find a husband, Jesus started to work on my heart pain. It was the last thing I wanted to do but I trudged on because I was so sick of being single. Turns out I was single because I could not trust. I learned that through journaling.

Reason Two: You Deserve The Best Life

You deserve the best life. If you’re going to be here living life then you might as well make the best of it. Most people are searching for happiness but don’t know how to get there. They are so stressed from life, work, and raising a family that they forget about themselves. Your heart is important and you deserve a good life. Don’t forget about yourself. You can figure out exactly what your own heart needs through journaling.

Reason Three: You Need Positive Change

If you are in the search for making some healthy changes in your life then journaling is a great way to get there. Positive change doesn’t just happen. You have to be intentional. Getting quiet and writing down your thoughts and feelings has many great benefits. The best of which is that you will get to know yourself.

For instance, when I started journaling I realized that I thought no one liked me and I was always struggling with people pleasing. But it turns out that not only do I have a healthy number of friends, but they also like my unique opinions and don’t care if we do not agree on every single thing. Talk about eye-opening!

Reason Four: Your Heart Hurts

If your heart hurts for any reason then journaling can help you to navigate the pain. I always trucked through my life thinking the sexual abuse I encountered during my childhood was my cross to bear. I had the mindset that it would always be a thorn in my side and that I would never completely heal from it. What a lie!! The truth is that Jesus has truly healed my heart and most of it was done through getting real with myself and learning to receive God’s promises for my life. I was able to get real with myself through journaling.

6 So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently say, “The Lord is my Helper [in time of need], I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?”

Hebrews 13:6, AMP

Reason Five: You Are Worth It

Most importantly, you were fearfully and wonderfully made by God the Father. (Psalm 139:14) You are worth investing in. Getting to know yourself and your value is important work. God has a destiny specifically and uniquely prepared for you and your life’s journey. No matter where you came from or what anyone has ever told you, you have great value in the kingdom of God. You are worth it!

As you learn your identity and authority in Jesus you will learn that you are greatly loved. I want to encourage you to receive the love God has for you. There is so much more for you in this life than the pain of undealt with emotions! Once you believe this truth, your life will change for the better.  

You must love yourself first before you can pour love into others. If you are unintentionally hurting those around you may need to start loving yourself first. As your loved ones see you heal, you will inspire them to seek healing for their hearts.

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Self Care Journals

I created three self care journals to help my readers get in touch with their emotions and learn to love themselves again. I created each journal with regard to the healing I have received from my own journaling. The three journals are focused on gratitude, emotional wellness, and your mindset.

Gratitude Journal

The 30-day gratitude journal helps you to reset and focus on the positive things in your life and on your future. When we can get our hearts into a posture of thankfulness, we can change our perspective. Sometimes the best reset is reflecting on all we have to be grateful for. Gratitude journaling helped me to get out of a funk when all my mind would go to was the negatives. Check out my six-week plan for gratitude journaling in my Gratitude Journal Prompts blog post.

Emotional Wellness Journal

The emotional wellness journal focuses on your triggers and feelings. Understanding your emotions and your belief system will give you unique insight as to why you are who you are today. Understanding your triggers and praying through them allows Jesus to access the hurt parts of your heart. These are usually places of emotional pain where we have created walls and kept Jesus out. He wants to heal your heart but first, you must give Him permission to heal you in these areas of emotional pain and trauma.

Mindset Journal

The mindset journal focuses on your thoughts and how they are shaping your life and your future. If you have an unhealthy thought life you may be experiencing some unhealthy outcomes. Journaling your thoughts and feelings is a great way to determine if you are believing a lie about yourself. I want to encourage you to bring every lie to truth according to who God says you are. Out of that truth will flow a river of healing from the Holy Spirit.

37 Then on the most important day of the feast, the last day, Jesus stood and shouted out to the crowds—“All you thirsty ones, come to me! Come to me and drink! 38 Believe in me so that rivers of living water will burst out from within you, flowing from your innermost being, just like the Scripture says!” 39 Jesus was prophesying about the Holy Spirit that believers were being prepared to receive.  But the Holy Spirit had not yet been poured out upon them, because Jesus had not yet been unveiled in his full splendor.

John 7:37-39, TPT

Holy Spirit Your Comforter

The Holy Spirit is with you and He will speak to your heart through journaling if you ask Him. Invite Holy Spirit to give you His perspective on what you are experiencing. After all, Holy Spirit is the Comforter and Jesus said that Holy Spirit will teach you all things.

26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

John 14:26-27, NIV

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