Ever experience labored up, depressed, or just plain bad without knowing precisely why?
Many folks can wander underneath a cloud of vague, undefined gloom or anxiety for days, if now not longer.
It could make us experience like we’re dwelling at the mercy of our emotions, rather than on top of things.
In this fog, we regularly forget about to ask a few key questions that could convey relief, like “What are these emotions?” and “Why am I experiencing them?”
One way of understanding your emotions is to keep a mood journal or emotional Journal.
In this guide, we will learn to develop a good mode Journal.
Affect, Emotion & Mood
It is important to understand the difference between Affect, emotion and mood.
Affect refers to our overall feelings, which we experience throughout our days, weeks and months.
Emotions arise as a result of specific events or situations. Moods, on the other hand, are the background feelings that accompany us without any particular reason or cause.
Psychologists define mood as a number of persistent feelings that accompany our perception and evaluation of incoming stimuli.
Mood has a huge influence on the way we react, specifically in the actions we take and the feelings that get created throughout that process.
Moods represent our overall state, and determine how we interpret or approach external stimuli. Also, they can last much longer than emotions
What’s a Mood Journal?
This type of journaling isn’t your typical document of each day’s activities. Rather, it’s a manner to discover and take movement around your emotions.
If you could document how you’re feeling and what you are thinking, you’re better able to understand your emotions, notice people or places which can be triggers, and recognize warning signs of your robust feelings.
Journaling your thoughts, emotions, and demanding situations has been shown to lessen anxiety and depression.
One reason: Putting down our problems on paper regularly helps us see the causes and consequently solutions more clearly.
A mood magazine is similar, but considering that it’s centered on your emotions, it’ll bring clarity to how to enhance your mental health.
A Mood Journal permits you to track your feelings over numerous days or perhaps weeks after which notice patterns or trends.
When you can understand those trends, you can paint to put off or keep away from certain triggers or focus your energy on how best to respond next time.
You can write every day if you need to, or simply write when you feel the need.
The critical factor to keep in mind is that your mood journal isn’t just for negative emotions like anger, frustration, and anxiety.
It is also for positive emotions like happiness, euphoria, and joy.
This will help you get to recognize yourself on a deeper level.
It will give you a jump-start within the lovely process of accomplishing emotional intelligence.
Steps to Making a Mood Journal
You need to follow following steps to create your own mood journal
- To create a mood journal, it is important to get a separate notebook for this purpose only. That way you don’t have your notes all scattered around in different places..
- Once you have a notebook, it’s time to begin. When you’re writing, you should be calm, alone, and not in a hurry. That way it will be easier to connect to your emotions and listen to what they have to tell you.
- One of the ways to make your mood journal is like this: draw four columns with four titles. The titles should be situation, emotion, response, and suggestions.
- You need to include date, hours of sleep, day of menstrual cycle, mood number, description of mood, details about food intake and use of any medications.
Ø The Date: You can easily forget to add a date if you are working on a blank journal.
There are some mood apps available, which can help you to keep your mood journal on them.
However, if you are working on a blank diary or notebook, put the the day of the week, date and time. .
Ø Hours of Sleep: The quantity of hours you’ve slept goes to decide your mood. Sleep disruption messes with circadian rhythms of the body.
Sleep affects our appetite, our reflexes, and how efficiently we address stress.
By keeping track of sleep patterns over a span of time, we are able to predict fragile moods and work to get ourselves again in balance.
It is important to record the number of hours you slept in your mood journal.
Ø Day of Menstrual Cycle: Many women experience a temper dip 5 days earlier than their period.
Some have severe symptoms around the time of ovulation till the onset of menstruation and are diagnosed with premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD).
Even if the signs and symptoms are mild, it may be useful to record the day of your menstrual cycle in your mood journal, so that you realize when you may anticipate feeling fragile and depressed.
Ø Assign your Mood a number : Try to assign a number to your mood intensity on a 0-10 rating scale.
You may use Emojis or symbols, or you can shade code your mood so long as it’s regular and you file your mood in a manner that makes sense to you.
Ø Description of Mood: You need to describe your mood in the best possible way. How did you feel upon waking?
Did you have readability of mind or mind fog? Any creeping disappointment or anxiety?
Any specific obsessions or poor intrusive thoughts you have been unable to let pass of?
Was the afternoon and evening tougher or less difficult than the morning?
Making a map of our emotions all through the day often lends itself to seeing a pattern of mood fluctuations over a 24-hour period.
When we recognize while our great hours are, we can take advantage of them, and shop the harder challenges for that time slot.
Likewise, we will deliver ourselves some cushion all through the harder times.
Further, name your emotion etc happy, sad, angry etc. There are six to eight primary emotions. Describe in detail what caused that specific emotion.
List in detail what happened to what is going to happen which is making you either happy or sad.
Try to think whether the experienced emotion was suitable or justified for that particular situation or not.
If you feel yourself experiencing a distressing emotion, consider taking a short walk, taking 10 slow breaths, or listening to your favorite song.
Write down your in-the-moment game plan in your mood journal.
|Emotion name||What caused this emotion?||Behaviors or actions this emotion caused me to take||Is this emotion appropriate to the situation?||Is this situation a distress to be tolerated or a problem to solve? And how?|
Ø Foods: Diet plays an important role in our mood. Taking too much Junk food can trigger depression.
Noting what you are eating the whole day can help you understand the link between your diet and mood.
Ø Triggers: No day is without triggers when you are dealing with chronic depression or anxiety. Bosses are unfair; children throw tantrums; in-laws push buttons; ailing mothers demand your time.
By recording triggers and significant events in your mood journal, you can try to make sense of the dips and spikes in your mood.
Ø Medications: By writing down to your journal exactly how much medications you are taking, you may see for yourself which ones seem to be helping, which ones aren’t, or which dose appears to be the most therapeutic.
You have a much extra invested interest in your well-being than does your doctor, so you want to stay on the pinnacle of your treatment plan and make contributions your well-informed reviews to conversations about which medications to try to how much.
Why is writing a good Mood Journal helpful?
Writing in your mood journal consistently will help you understand yourself better.
You will be able to identify the problem areas in your life and notice which emotion comes up the most. Is it fear, or maybe insecurity?
Being aware of it will help you come up with suggestions so that you can put them into practice and not just leave them on the page.
If you are a person with a lot of obsessive thought patterns, a mood journal can help you stop them.
You’ll realize that analyzing and reflecting on events will make you feel much better.
You’ll be flooded with a pleasant sensation of health and well-being. You can manage the positive emotions that you have too.
It will enable you to focus your attention on all the good things that happen in your life.
A Take Home Message
The mind can be a tricky element to manage. In some moments it cooperates, and in others, it runs loose.
Being more knowledge of these changing emotions, and drawing close them with curiosity, could make a big difference within the coping conduct we make use of to address such ranging highs and lows.
There are many tools available at our fingertips that could empower us to take fee of our lives, genuinely by just noticing how we feel, and what triggered it.
With minimal time and effort, we will start paying attention to the styles that our lives undergo and adjust consequently to the information that emerges.
FAQ’ related to Mood Journal
Q1: What is mood Journal?
A mood journal is focused on your mood you experience in your day to day life.
It helps to understand and record your feelings and mood.
Q2: Give some examples of moods?
Q3. What are some tips for writing a Mood Journal ?
1. Write Daily
2. Spare time to write your mood journal .
2. Make it easy.
3. Write whatever feels right.
4. Use your journal as you see fit.
Q4. How do you write about your feelings?
1. Write about experiencing the feeling in third person
2. Write about your memories
3. Give the emotion to a character.
4. Write about your feelings regularly.
5. Write about your emotions like you’re writing a children’s book.
Q5: Does Journaling help with Anxiety?
Journaling helps with anxiety by working on helping you work through your anxious feelings.
Healthline.com: Mood Journal 101
Beliefnet.com:8 Things to Include in a Mood Journal
exploring ourmind.com: How to keep a mood journal