Journaling our heartaches is powerful. It opens the door to change and healing. It is like putting germ killing hydrogen peroxide on our invisible wounds.
When you spend time journaling, try recording positive things as well. It is like eating a teaspoon of honey to chase away the taste of medicine.
I'm not advocating white-washing positives where you tell yourself lies. I don't think it leads to real healing to tell yourself that your abuser didn't really hurt you that bad, or that you feel "happy" even when you're really feeling depressed. There are people who think that forcing a positive attitude will make things better. I don't agree with that view. Your insides know the truth no matter what you tell yourself.
What I want to encourage you to do in your journal is to consciously acknowledge true positives. When I left my abusive spouse, I had tons of pain to wade through, which I dug into doing. But I found that it helped to also acknowledge the current blessings in my life. So at the end of each painful journaling session, I added a prayer thanking God for one blessing He had given me that day. At first this was a difficult exercise, but it became easier. And within weeks I was finding multiple things to be thankful for each day. It gave me energy to end on a positive note. It helped me to keep on trudging through the healing and did much to draw me closer to God.
Timothy, a fellow blogger, wrote some comments on journaling that he has given me permission to quote:
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