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Journaling Through Cancer: How To Do It

Posted by Arona Martin on
Journaling Through Cancer: How To Do It

Journaling Through Cancer -  How To Do It

I’ve been journaling on an off for my whole life. Some years I write every day, some years its just a few long entries, but either way, putting my thoughts, fears, and dreams on paper has always helped me. So when my friend, Jessica, was diagnosed with cancer I did the only thing I knew how to do - I made her a journal. I also made one for myself too!

Shop my LOVE HEALS Journal, here.

Love Heals Journal 

Writing down your thoughts and feelings can be helpful in many different ways – especially if you’re living with cancer. Cancer is scary, confusing, and completely chaotic with all the doctors appointments and the emotions that come with it.  There are lots of tests and appointments to attend, and that’s in addition to the rest of your normal daily activities. And if you are a mom, then just add to that! With all the rushing around, it can be hard to take a pause, and to really accept all you are going through. And lets be honest, some of us don’t want to! But putting pen to paper is a great way to sort it all out, or just get it all out, and either way, writing helps. 

Keeping a journal, even if it is only for a few minutes a day, will give you the chance to slow down and let out all that is happening inside of you. 

Why write when you have cancer:

  1. It relieves stress – letting it out is always better than keeping it in.
  2. You can clarify your thoughts – seeing it in front of you is always better than keeping things jumbled in your head.
  3. To focus on the good stuff – when you purposefully write it down, you focus on the good!
Please don’t be intimidated about exactly how to journal. Your journal is whatever you want it to be. It can be a letter to yourself, a summary of your day, a record of your feelings, hopes and fears. There are lots of ways to do it. 

Here are a few quick tips if you are thinking of starting a cancer journal:

  1. Try to set aside a few minutes each day or at least a few times each week to journal, so you get into the habit of writing. It doesn’t have to be the same time of day.
  2. It sounds obvious, but date each entry. Cancer can make things like dates and times fade fast.
  3. If do you have trouble figuring out what to write, start simply record the date, weather, news events or family happenings and record your reactions to them, you will be amazed at what pours out after.
  4. Think of journaling as another therapy, but one for your mind. You are NOT wasting time!
  5. Don’t worry about grammar or spelling. Your journal is just for you, so make a mistake, cross out a word, and even scribble over something – there are no rules!
  6. When you get stuck, try adding some doodle, or drawings, or a quote that you like. I like to add in lyrics to a song – sometimes they say exactly hat I am feeling!
  7. Try playing relaxing music( you can download my RELAX playlist here) or light a candle while you write. I find that a warm cozy environment helps me be honest with myself.
  8. Don’t judge what you write, just write…I call it a “mind dump”. Just write whatever comes in the moment, no judgement!
  9. Be honest about your hopes, fears, dreams, frustrations and well, everything. Otherwise, what’s the point?

Don’t know where to start?  Here are a few journaling ideas:

  1. Start with one word – it could be you emotion for the day. Now describe why you feel that way
  2. Write down the things that you are worried about. NO need to be positive here, writing can help you work through the worry.
  3. What is the funniest thing that has happened to you during your treatment. 
  4. I am thankful for  - now fill in the blank
  5. Who showed up for you that you were surprised about? Write about it.

Need a few more ideas? I created a blog with a few download-able pages from the LOVE HEALS Journal to get you started.

Does some one you love have cancer? Gift them their own LOVE HEALS JOURNAL so they can start journaling:

Love Heals Journal



P.S. Are you a supporter of a loved one with cancer? Join my private support community HERE.



Big Hug Lap Blanket with tagsLove Heals Journal

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