How to Use Journaling for Infertility
Journaling for infertility is one of the first practices I recommend to women who have recently gone through a miscarriage or are currently TTC with little success. For those who are on their TTC journey, emotions can often run high. There are so many things that are experienced in the process, it's difficult to not let them feel overwhelming.
Many women aren't in a place where they feel ready to share about their feelings with someone else, so journaling is a great practice for a number of reasons. My goal here is to give you a few reasons why journaling can be helpful and a few ways it can help you move forward in a productive way.
Benefits of Journaling for Infertility
Release your emotions without fear or judgment. Frankly, there's not much out there that prepares you for something as painful as experiencing infertility. So many emotions can be a part of the journey. Desperation. Frustration. Disappointment. Sadness. Anger. Guilt. Shame. If infertility is something you're familiar with, chances are it can be extremely difficult some days. Journaling gives you the chance to express your raw emotions without the fear of friends and family giving unsolicited advice.
Reduce stress and anxiety. There will be days where you feel like no one understand and it just feels lonely. By putting pen to paper with your emotions, you allow yourself the opportunity to reduce your stress. Lower stress levels = boosting your chances of conceiving.
Track your emotional cycle. There are lots of ups and downs throughout the TTC experience. Journaling can help you keep tabs on your symptoms, feelings, and changes in your body. It will allow you to have an understanding of what's happening, physically and emotionally, so you feel better equipped the next time you have to go to the doctor's office, come across a friend who's currently pregnant, or something else that's difficult for you.
Allows emotional breakthroughs. The more practice you get with journaling, the more you'll experience there might be more behind the emotions that you originally think. Journaling can help you find the root of why things feel especially sad, frustrating, or disappointing.
Process previous events. While there are some parts of the TTC journey that might feel too painful to keep in your memory, there might be others that you will want to remember to share in the future. Journaling can help you have a clear understanding of what happened each step of the way.
How to Journal for Infertility
You don't need to buy a fancy notebook or guided journal to get into the practice of journaling. You can find any notebook you have lying around and use it to start moving forward in your journey. There are a few things I recommend when it comes to your journaling practice, but you don't have to do everything on this list. Take the suggestions that best serve you.
Jot down the date and time. Before writing an entry, I recommend jotting down the specific date and time. This is a great way to track how you're feeling through specific times of the day or month. When you look back, you'll have a clearer understanding of what you were experiencing and why.
List the things you're grateful for. When you're walking through something as painful as miscarriage and infertility, there might not feel like there are a lot of things to be grateful for. It might feel like the whole world is against you. I encourage you to keep it small and simple. What are little things in your day that you can take note of and be grateful for? This is a great way to shift you into a more positive mindset, so you can show up more hopefully in your day-to-day life. When you first start, you might only have a few things. Try working up to 5-10 things you can list down every day.
Freewrite anything you're experiencing, physically and emotionally. When you first starting journaling, it might feel like you have nothing to write down. My suggestion is you start simply: What happened during the day? Write it down. Once you get the hang of writing what happened during your day, get curious about the feelings you might have experienced along with those events. Explore those feelings, then go deeper. What were you feeling when this happened? What are some reasons why you might be experiencing those feelings? Why does it feel important to you? How do you feel about how you feel? If you hope to use journaling as a way to get off the emotional roller coaster, get curious about those feelings and write without judgment.
Write out any affirmations or intentions. Repeating positive affirmations is a great way to reduce your stress and set your intentions for your day and your life. List out any that you feel I've recommended a few that you can write out in this list: 10 Positive Affirmations When You're TTC. Have you used journaling for helping you with the emotions of infertility? Do you need help when it comes to journaling? Please don't hesitate to reach out to me with questions or head to Mamas After Miscarriage.