By: Margaux Paul
It’s never too early to start experiencing the benefits of journaling! Children, like adults, experience intense feelings from time to time, and journaling can help them process these emotions safely and constructively. Journaling promotes creativity and can be a great tool to teach your child the joy of accomplishing something of their own that isn’t a school assignment. Journaling can also help your child with their writing skills and communication. When I was a child, my mother encouraged me to journal; now, journaling is a habit. Let’s talk more about the benefits of journaling for your child.
It Promotes Creativity
Your child is full of unique ideas and putting them down on paper can help them explore their endless creativity. If you show them that you believe in them and what they can create, that can inspire confidence in them to pursue their artistic dreams. Here are some prompts to help them get started with journaling:
- Give them the beginning of a story and ask them to finish it.
- Ask them to write letters to their future self to help them envision goals and plan for the future.
Journaling Can Help Reduce Stress
One study published by PubMed Central was conducted in a children’s hospital, and patients, workers, and families “reported a reduction in stress levels” after participating in a journaling exercise that asked them to answer three questions:
- What are three things you’re grateful for?
- Write the story of your life in six words.
- Write down three wishes you have.
Your child may be experiencing certain emotions for the first time, and journaling can help them manage their stress safely and effectively. It can also allow them to see a problem from different perspectives.
It’s a Way to Look Back on Their Childhood
I can’t tell you how grateful I am to have old journals to look back on. There are many things from my childhood that I have forgotten, but because I journaled for most of my childhood, I can revisit memories that otherwise would have been lost to me. Your child may complain when beginning their journaling habit, but I guarantee you they will be grateful for their journals when they’re older.
They’ll be surprised to see how much they’ve grown, and how their thought process has changed. They’ll rediscover old childhood friends, and memories of playing with them. Do they remember what a typical day looked like for them when they were in the third grade? Probably not, but because of their journals now they will!
Journaling is one of the most successful tools we have for processing pain and trauma, and the earlier we begin the work the earlier we can heal. Children are full of ideas, and they suffer with their own pain. Having a safe place to explore their thoughts and feelings is an invaluable tool. Click on the link below to start your own journaling practice today, so you can help your child with their journaling journey!
Begin Journaling Here
Health Care Practitioners and Families Writing Together: The Three-Minute Mental Makeover. (2020). The Permanente Journal. https://doi.org/10.7812/tpp/19.056
Rodriguex, J. (2017, July 20). How journaling benefits your child. Scholastic. https://www.scholastic.com/parents/books-and–reading/raise-a-reader-blog/how-journaling-benefits-your-child.html
Sarkar, S. (2022). 7 benefits of journaling for your child. Ezyschooling. https://ezyschooling.com/parenting/expert/benefits-journaling-childrenTartakovsky, M., & Saripalli, V. (2022, February 22). 6 Journaling Benefits and How to Start Right Now. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/benefits-of-journaling#reduced-stress
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