The first definition I came across when I Googled the word was :
A daily record of news and events of a personal nature; a diary.
diary, daily record, daybook, log, logbook, chronicle
I started as a young girl with a diary I received as a gift from an elderly relative. Diary, such an old fashioned term but really quite nostalgic. I can’t help but sing that song by Bread in my head when I hear it. After reading the definition though I want to call it keeping a chronicle. How pretentious would that be? I'm going to do it anyway.
Rarely did I remember to write in the little book but when I did, it was all the usual nonsense of a young age – who was my latest crush (Parker Stevenson, David Cassidy), where I’d gone (the mall if I was lucky), who said what to whom and was now not talking. All the angst of youth. My earliest journals were burned in an effort to wipe away all the foolishness of the time but we never really forget our silliness.
Later I used my journals for a host of reasons – creatively as art inspiration (realizing I am not a good artist but love it anyway), a bullet journal of things I needed to do (not doing half of them), morning pages (this is just an outlet to write every horrible thought you have of yourself, so depressing), a review of each book I’ve read (I prefer to keep most of my reviews to myself), sometimes answering prompts (from self help books or online lists) and a documenter of life (photos along with musings).
What I found from writing all these books was an outlet – often for all the things I needed to think about. Just the act of writing things out helped me to organize my thoughts. Jumbled ideas would form into a clearer picture. Not only did my thoughts get clearer but I was able to look at myself more dispassionately. If someone hurt my feelings and I wrote it out, sometimes I could see it with more perspective. Sometimes, I will go back later and look at what I've written and I get embarrassed at my sensitivity but it does let me let go of slights and hurt feelings.
As a hobby, I have found a way to really enjoy every part of journaling. I love finding new journals, buying fun colored pens and opening up a new book with anticipation. There is something so satisfying about finishing a journal too. You flip through to see all the happy events of the past months that often remain only on your phone. Sometimes it’s easy to forget all the fun you have had in the day to day of life. When I have ended a book, I place it on a shelf to save for another day when I want to relive a memory of the past.