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There’s a chance you think of journaling as a high & lofty esoteric experience reserved for those with oodles of time & a contemplative disposition.
That is not me.
I mean, I’m an introvert, so I do a good deal of solitary thinking & have my contemplative moments, but for some reason the visual of cozying up by the fire with a mug of tea & a snuggly blanket has never been my journaling style.
I have journaled since I was 13 years old. My father had passed away a few years earlier & when he did, a teacher gifted me a journal. I let that leather bound, gold foiled volume of what felt like looming obligation sit there for 4 years before I picked it up. But when I did, when all the jumbled thoughts that had been inside me came tumbling out onto the page, the enormous sense of relief I felt had me hooked on journaling for the long haul.
About 20 years ago I gave myself permission to take the weightiness of journaling off my plate. To aim to write what was the truest expression of the moment I was having, rather than it needing to be a flowing dissertation or well constructed diatribe. By changing my orientation, I think it also changed my sense of myself to some degree.
Writing in my journal has looked different at different times in my life. There have been phases of consternation & frustration, big dreams full of pro & con lists. So many one word prayers/cussing fits/passwords/doctor appointments & more. All the pre-parenting to actual parenting thought processes. Plus, a decent amount of the initial business plan for Attic Journals.
Journaling is now an act of release. It’s getting the things that are inside, out. In it’s purest form it’s self care because I’m giving myself permission to both celebrate & release the wide range of life’s moments. Sometimes that’s in the form of:
I’m sure there’s likely an app to track, list & maintain all the things above. Sure. Even though I sell a low tech product, I totally understand & applaud the place for the convenience & access afforded by such apps. But for me… the pen, the paper, the having a volume to refer to later on down the road of life… that’s the experience I’m committed to.