18 Sep 2014

Don't Think. Just Write.




As a kid I always liked the idea of having a diary or a journal; a place to write your thoughts, wishes, dreams, and occasionally a place to release all your anger. The thing was, I was under the idea that keeping a diary meant having to write in it every single day and this made me feel bored with it so easily. This was a cycle that went on for years and years and it annoyed me a little because I knew that writing things down was a good thing.

In my last year of high school, I found myself feeling severely anxious and uneasy most days of the week. At school, I wasn't quite in the mood to socialise with others at lunch and I spent most of the final months of Year 12 sitting in the study room studying (I didn't think this helped very much). I felt very confused because I had never felt this level of anxiety before. I took solace in keeping myself busy with chemistry study or English study.

For my 17th birthday, I chose the leather-bound notebooks you see above as part of my birthday present. They're from Kikki.K and made from recycled soft leather. I also chose a fountain pen to go with it. I started using the first notebook as a place to write down stories that I wrote, but it quickly changed to a place I wrote every bad thought or feeling I had down. Whenever I felt uneasy, anxious, upset, confused, or anything like that I turned to my little brown book and poured my thoughts out. Every entry is a stream of consciousness; I don't have a structure to any of my entries. Some entries read like I am speaking to someone in particular, others read like I'm speaking to myself, but they're mostly written in whichever way allows me to gain a better understanding of how I'm feeling.

All of that being said, I developed a few 'unspoken rules'. One of them is You don't have to finish an entry. There are some entries only half a page long and they are unfinished. Sometimes I run out of things to say or I lose my train of thought, or I just did not want to write anymore, or I simply didn't need to write anymore because things became clearer to me. My second rule is Don't read previous entries. This one is a bit of a funny one that I didn't even consciously decide on. After a few months of writing, I found that I was making an effort not to flick back through the previous entries and read what I was thinking in certain situations and I just carried it on to present day. I believe that this is because I want to lock all of those bad feelings away and I just don't need them anymore; the book has done its job.

Three years later, and this book is serving me well (I am almost finished with the first book, and I have the second one ready for whenever I need it). I have had periods where I wrote in it every night and periods where I return to it three months later. Whatever the case, I know that if I am in need of clarity, I can always turn to this book and write and write and write.


Do you keep a journal? If so, do you find that it has helped you in your life?

3 comments:

  1. Writing is very therapeutic. I don't keep a journal right now though. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I find it to be the best way to get a clear head :)

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