Sometimes it is important to reboot all the thoughts that swirl inside the mind and soul. The simplest way to start resetting your emotional and mental health is with a brain dump. This is when you get out your journal, notebook, or piece of paper, and write absolutely anything and everything that is on your mind.
There are no rules, timers, or quantities you need to achieve here. It is just about writing until you feel like all your thoughts, worries, feelings, plans, goals, emotions, and anything else in your head is on paper.
You may also see this called “stream of consciousness” journaling, since it works in much the same way. Here are a couple of things to know about the brain dump style of journaling.
You will probably change topics frequently
Brain dumps are not succinct or in any type of order. You don’t need to use a journal prompt of any kind, or choosing a topic to write about. The point is to just write whatever comes to your mind. This means writing about as many different things as you want. Start with the first thing that is on your mind and write. Don’t worry about spelling or punctuation. Write sloppy or neat, big or small, and even throw doodles in, if that’s where your jounaling takes you. The journal is yours, no one is going to see it, so you have the freedom to let it all out.
Don’t worry about anything while you write, whether that is how nice your handwriting is to spelling or grammatical errors. You just need to get your thoughts out of your head and onto paper. That is the only thing you should be mindful about.
Allow yourself to write for as long as you need to…(or are able to)
Don’t set a limit as far as how long to write or how many pages. That helps with daily journaling, but brain dumps are done less often, and therefore need the flexibility of as much time as you need to get done.
For those with kids, this might be a time to put yourself first and make “a date” with yourself, hire a baby sitter for a few hours, and go to a local cafe to journal. This could be a good way to start the brain dump. You might be able to carve out some extra time after the kids go to bed and give yourself permission to do something for yourself.
Everyone’s life is structured in its own unique way. Find a journaling time that works for you and realize it is OK to have it shift around. So be flexible and give yourself permission to brain dump when you can. You are worth it!