Dear Diary...


Do you keep a journal? Beth has some thoughts about the practice…

As we transition into the new year, I have noticed people deciding to keep a journal:  A gratitude journal, a bullet journal, a reading bullet journal, a daily diary - the list goes on.  These resolutions make me a little nervous, because I always feel as though writing in a journal is one of those things that I should do but actually don’t really want to do.

I have limited--and fairly unsuccessful--experience in keeping a diary or a journal.  In third grade I received a small leather-bound, one-year diary.  While I did lock the diary to hold my secrets close, I merely hid the key right under the diary itself, storing both in the original gift box.  And the drudgery of daily writing ("Tonight we ate some chicken, mashed potatoes, and peas for dinner.") turned me off. 

In adolescence, armed with a battered dark-blue spiral notebook, I tried again, scrawling angsty tirades.  Later on, I also chronicled some fears during the long process of a medical diagnosis, in yet another spiral notebook.

But the journals we carry at the shop are intriguing enough that I might consider writing in one.  Physically beautiful, they excite me about documenting some of my thoughts.  The starkly elegant Blackwing notebooks provoke no feelings of stress; their soft white, grey, and black covers are wonderfully tactile and allow for any possibilities.  "Among Trees: A Guided Journal for Forest Bathing," containing beautiful color images, invites me to communicate in words my already existing love of trees.  Pages for excursion logs ask open-ended prompts such as "changes I noticed in my body during the walk." 

As someone with synesthesia, I am also interested in "My Life in Color." Beautiful blank, colored pages are interspersed with thought-provoking questions, designed to draw out creativity and self-reflection.  For example, "Shakespeare called jealousy "the green-eyed monster.' What makes you feel envious, and how do you bolster your self-esteem against it?"  

I still don’t plan to even keep a Goodreads account to rigidly document my reading habits.  But these gorgeous alternatives do tempt me to write in a journal again.