Do you keep a journal? I used to regularly write in a diary when I was a teenager. In high school the first 10 minutes of our English class was always devoted to writing in our journals. This is something that I want to do again.
There are a lot of benefits to keeping a journal, including:
There is something so relaxing about being in a quiet place and concentrating on just your thoughts with pen in hand.
Explore Your Thoughts and Feelings
It can be cathartic to write down what you’re thinking and feeling if it’s for your eyes only knowing that you won’t be judged by others.
Feel Less Alone
There’s a reason people often start out writing their journals “Dear Diary.” A diary or journal can be like confiding in a friend. If no real friend, (or cat or dog in my case) is nearby to hear you if you need to pour your heart out, a journal is a great way to do it.
Develop Your Writing Skills
Journaling is a great way to develop your writing skills and even your writing style. Like an athlete in training, you’ll build “muscles” and might surprise yourself at how much you can write at a time with practice.
Track Symptoms of Illness
Sometimes symptoms of illness can be subtle and it’s only with reflection that we recall past indications of health issues. Along with writing how you’re feeling mentally, maybe track anything that’s a bit off with your physical health as well in your journal?
Create a Record of Events
Logging information about big family gatherings, what gifts were received for a birthday or Christmas, and that sort of thing, to record specific memories that might otherwise be forgotten over time.
Create an Heirloom
Having spent a lot of time over the years doing genealogy, I would love to find a journal kept by one of my ancestors, wouldn’t you? If you keep a journal, you could create such an heirloom for a future generation so that they can know you through your writing.
Write a Memoir
If you think you might ever want to write a memoir, start writing a journal. The task will be much simpler if you can refer back to your journal.
I’ve thrown this one in just for fun. My daughter publishes an annual scrapbook-like book full of family pictures, photos of their calendar pages where all events are noted, and paragraphs about accomplishments, celebrations and other events that have happened throughout the year in the family through Blurb. She swears that whenever there’s a dispute between her and her husband about when something happened, they refer back to the book—and she’s usually right!
Just some thoughts on journaling. Is this something you do or think you might want to start doing, too? Let me know in the comments.
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