Journaling allows us to pour all of our thoughts, feelings, wants, and desires onto paper. We get to release our emotions without any judgement. If journaling is good for our mental health, why don’t we encourage our children to journal? As an educator I am extremely aware that children HATE writing. I have heard many different reasons as to why (“I can’t think of anything to write about. My writing isn’t good.”), but the overall theme remains the same (“I hate writing”).
When we encourage our children to journal regularly, we can change their thoughts about writing.
Wouldn’t it be great if journaling led our children on a journey of self-discovery? They can express their emotions, but then explore why they’re having those emotions. As parents we can model the routine of journaling and talk about it out loud. Share some of the things you plan on writing to help spark their own ideas (“I had a tough day at work today. I think I’m going to write about how I felt frustrated and think about why if felt that way.”).
Families who share everyday activities together form strong, emotional ties. Studies have found that families who enjoy group activities together share a stronger emotional bond as well as an ability to adapt well to situations as a family. Share your favorite hobbies, sports, books, movies or other favorite activities (Sletten, 2017). For children who have a hard time expressing their needs verbally or making decisions about things, keeping a journal of their thoughts is a great way to help learn emotional organization. Even if all your child does is write about an interaction she had during the day, she can always go back to explore that interaction more objectively (Morin, 2020).
I’m a huge fan of back and forth 2-person journals, but I became increasingly intrigued with the idea of a 2-person parent-child journal (journaling at the same time). I was so obsessed with the concept that I went ahead and created The Link 2 Join Hearts: An Interactive Parent-Child Communication Journal (check out our website for more information). Parents and their children benefit substantially from journaling together—they have the opportunity to express themselves to each other through writing or drawing. Children will learn the importance of keeping someone’s secret and personal business private. The lines of communication widen when children know that they can journal their truths to their parents. As parents we have to remember to be open to receiving anything our children want to share—without judgement.
If you aren’t yet, start journaling today! And if you want to try a unique way of journaling with your child, subscribe to know when you can grab a copy of The Link 2 Join Hearts journal!
One Parent. One Child. 2 Hearts Linked for Eternity.
The Link 2 Join Hearts stimulates fun, healthy, and open dialogue between parents and their children. This helps them easily navigate through common challenging conversations.
It not only brings parents closer to their children but also strengthens their eternal bond.
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“Respond with an open heart instead of reacting with a closed mind.”