Grief Journals: Creative Expression and Healing

A grief journal can be very helpful in processing grief. It’s a safe space to express emotions and unburden yourself. When you’re writing in a journal, there is no judgment, and you can say anything you need to say. In addition to writing about what has happened and how you feel, you can use a grief journal to express gratitude for what remains.

There are several options. Blank books provide plenty of room for you to express yourself while journals with prompts can get you started on each entry, giving you a jumping-off point for your thoughts. A grief journal doesn’t have to be elaborate. In fact, you can make it yourself using a simple binder with loose-leaf paper. Whatever works for you is fine, and you can go as elaborate or as simple with it as you choose.

The important thing is to try to set aside time each day to write. When you sit down with your journal, set a timer —perhaps for 15-30 minutes — to prevent you from becoming bogged down. Write what’s happening around you, and record your thoughts as they come to you. Some people find it helpful to jot down dreams they’ve had. If you’re interested in keeping track of your dreams, it’s a good idea to keep your journal near your bed so you can write them out when they’re fresh in your mind.

Your grief journal is your own private space. It doesn’t need to be shared with anyone unless you think something you’ve written would be helpful to a friend in a time of need. If words were left unsaid when your loved one died, your journal is a good place to write them down. Try to end each journaling session on a positive note so you can move forward in a good frame of mind.

At Greenwood, we are committed to helping families heal from the pain of losing a loved one. Grief journaling is one way to process grief, but another good way to facilitate healing is with a meaningful end-of-life service. We’re happy to help you preplan for your own future need or plan for a loved one’s funeral with a need that’s more immediate. Call us today at (619) 450-1479 to learn more.

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