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My name is Kenneth Pryor, and my academic background is in Philosophy, with graduate training in Psychology and Counseling. I am interested in finding reliable tools for growth and transformation, and I have found working with a personal journal to be one of the most powerful aids to self-understanding available to us today. I started journaling when I was going through a difficult time in my life, and I discovered that if I wrote clearly and carefully, I could get to the root of my problems and find ways to resolve them. Then I explored the psychological research on the effectiveness of journal writing—writing in a journal helps people recover from trauma, emotional problems, difficulties with relationships and other problems. Journal work helped me during an important part of my life, and I want to pass on what I have learned.
Combined with mindfulness training, journal writing is very effective. Mindfulness training emphasizes doing one thing at a time, focusing on the present and living purposefully. It teaches us to go slowly to find the ways out of anxiety and stress. I approach journal work as a form of meditation, working with words to find ways to live with purpose and understanding. This work is my first published book, and I hope you find it useful. I have retired now, and I plan to write further self-help books in the fields of meditation, psychology and writing. I am married, and my wife and I live in the beautiful Valley of the Moon in Sonoma County, California.
I welcome comments and reviews of my work, and I would like to hear about your experience with the material covered in this book, including the recommended exercises. Learning about journaling my thoughts was one of the breakthrough experiences of my life, and I hope it can have that same impact on your life. Self-understanding is one of the greatest of life's accomplishments, and it is available to us every single day. All we have to do is pick up the pen (or sit at the computer) and begin to write. The magic happens when you follow the forms of writing carefully to a single subject of discussion, of honestly answering your own questions and then writing out your plan of action. Your life will make sense, and you will know how you want to live.