I love to write so itâ€™s no wonder why Iâ€™m advocating keeping a journal. To be honest, despite my love for writing, I never really started a journal until about 3 years ago on my computer. Itâ€™s now about 80 pages long, single spaced and I look back to it from time to time and each time I do, Iâ€™m glad I took the time to write in it. (yes, I know I said time 4 times :))
What should you write about in your journal? Any memories you want to remember, especially the successful ones. You want to â€śsaveâ€ť the positive states in your life, those feelings of accomplishments, those personal memories that are yours and yours alone so when you feel a bit down, you can always turn back to your journal for strength.
The human memory is very fragile. Police know this all too well so they like to debrief eyewitnesses as soon as they can because memory is indeed a function of time. One of the ways people like to record their memories is to take a lot of pictures. I have nothing against that at all. I think it’s a great way to remember. However, I like to write about memories simply because pictures can only show so much, namely whatâ€™s going on the outside. Writing can show whatâ€™s going on in the inside. Writing encapsulates memories, thoughts, and feelings much more vividly than pictures ever will. You canâ€™t paint a better picture than with your own thoughts put on paper.
In addition, writing in a journal serves as a great outlet. It clears the mind, it can pave the way for new ideas, itâ€™s therapeutic and has a calming effect which leads to less stress. It forces you to be clear and youâ€™ll find all of these benefits will spill over into other areas of your life.
You donâ€™t have to write every day â€“ only when you want to remember a specific event. When that event occurs, try to write about it in as much detail as you possibly can so when you go back and read that entry, itâ€™s as if you were in that exact same moment in time. You have to milk the experience you want to remember for all its worth so when you go back and read it, everything snaps back into place. I sometimes regret that I wasnâ€™t as detailed in some of my entries as I would have wanted them to be.
When you go back and read through your entries, youâ€™re going to smile because youâ€™ll have a nice time strolling down â€śSuccess Laneâ€ť. Also, mark my words, youâ€™re going to be astonished at whatâ€™s been written because it will seem as if another person has written it. The voice you have now compared to the voice of 3 years ago will be as different as night and day and youâ€™ll then begin to realize how much youâ€™ve grown in terms of thinking, behavior, and attitude. It makes you wonder how youâ€™ll see yourself when youâ€™re looking back at the entries you write today.
I donâ€™t know who said this quote but I think it sums up this post quite well:
â€śIf your life is worth living, itâ€™s worth recording.â€ť
So start today.