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Hackernoon logoHow I Overcame Anxiety and Built an App to Help Others by@opark

How I Overcame Anxiety and Built an App to Help Others

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@oparkO Park

Founder of Goodnight Journal

I may have presented myself as a happy person surrounded by lots of friends. Yes, I’m a happy person and am fortunate to have good friends around me. However, it took me a while to live and think this way. Maybe nothing has really changed around me but I know that the way I look and think through things has completely changed. Now I look at things in a more optimistic way than before. It didn’t happen overnight but it slowly turned me into this way after simply writing down things from my mind to actual writing.

In this blog, I wanted to share my story about how journaling helped me overcome my anxiety and depression and built an app to write a journal with the hopes that this will be helpful to other people going through the same situation like myself out there.

My anxiety and stress

I’m a type of person who usually has too many thoughts all the time. I tend to overthink even for a small matter and put myself into situations that give me anxiety, depression, and insomnia. I’m also a bit adventurous and curious, which puts myself in quite stressful situations.

Having too many thoughts and being stressed from work, finance, relationships, made me anxious. This bothered me the most when I tried to go to sleep at night. Some nights, I ended up staying up till 5 or 6 in the morning cause of this. I sometimes felt that I was not even sure if I’m gonna be able to handle all of these any further. Luckily, I got this habit of writing journals and that has been helping me to live and stay strong.

Journaling helped me get through a day

The only way out for me to fully express and relieve things out of my mind was writing. I simply write everything down on the paper from my head without any filters. I noticed a bit of relief each time I write everything I have in my mind and it gets better and better as I keep doing this. The things I wrote in my journals are not always pretty and probably not appropriate to say in person but I can do that in my journal.

There were lots of anxieties, sad feelings, and frustrations. Letting them out of my mind and knowing what I was struggling with helped me get better at each thing I wrote. There’s no magic, simply writing them down all of them from my mind simply helped me feel much relieved and made me better able to move on with my life.

It also helped me stay strong being in an environment where I had no one to talk to. Humans can not live without human interactions and it took me a while to build a small network where I can really interact with others in a deeper manner. Writing about my day and thoughts on my journal helped me stay strong till I get some good friends who I can talk to. Even after, it helps me to fully express myself because I don’t need a filter on my journal.

It also helps me in many other ways

One of things I like to do in my journal is to write todos for a day. It really helps me keep things organized and make sure to complete all the things that I need to do for a day. I found this very helpful since I started working for myself at home.

It also allows me to look back and help me learn things from the past and plan things better for the future.

I will stop here because there are a lot of studies out there that show the benefits of keeping a journal.

How I built Goodnight Journal

I have this goal for my life that I want to spend more time working on something that can help people live. This might not have a big direct impact compared to colonizing Mars but building an app where people can write journals and interact with other journal writers was something I can actually do and help some people live better lives.

After writing journals on the paper for over a decade, I decided to create an app where anyone can come and write a diary. It came naturally since I noticed myself spending a lot more time on my laptop and cell phone. I also added the community feature where journal writers can connect with each other and have been seeing heartwarming interactions amongst the users.

I understand writing is not for everyone but also believe that it never hurts to give it a try and you can simply move on to something else till you find the one that works for you.


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