To the 21st-century, I say the art of journaling is alive and well. It’s just taken a different turn.
I’ve read so many great articles on how journaling can change your life. It probaly can. I’ve also read that journaling affects your brain in ways that reduce stress, clarify thoughts, or resolve disagreements. (Purcell) I don’t doubt any of those claims. What I do have a problem with is the methods in which journaling must occur.
For years, I thought I was incapable of journaling. I admired the openness with which those around me discussed their daily gratitude, Bible, and life journals. They showed off beautiful leather books filled with script. I bought beautiful bound volumes in hopes of inspirations. Only to fill three pages and cast them aside with a longing and hopelessness.
I craved what came so easily to others.
And then one day, as I was scrolling through the hundreds of pictures of my children on Instagram, quips and jokes attached, I realized I do journal.
It’s just that my journaling takes the form of a blog that details the days of my life, and photos on Instagram where I post those moments that mean so much to me, that inspire me, that I will come back to tomorrow and reminisce, use as salve for my soul.
So, when I stopped to consider the idea of journaling and it’s modern applications I decided that, yes, there is still pen on paper, ink smudged pages filled with inspired, meandering, scribbles, and everything in between. But there is also the modern version of journaling that takes what’s in your heart and puts in on memory cards, sticks, drives, and posts.
Jane Austen writing to her sister Cassandra said, “I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal.” Profound? Maybe, but it’s also just a young woman talking with her sister about life.
What is journaling but telling our stories. All of us want to tell our story in one way or another. Sometimes we scream it and sometimes we whisper, still, we’re all telling a story. What form does your story take?