Last week, I felt like I was having a panic attack. I could feel the perspiration gather on my face. I could feel my chest becoming warm. A million thoughts were rushing in my mind. What caused this, you ask. I thought I had lost my journal. Seriously. I know for someone who doesn’t journal, I probably sound melodramatic and a drama queen, but for those of you who do journal, I know you understand my anxiety. Let me explain. A journal is a prized, cherished possession because it allows you to be yourself in a safe, nurturing environment. In a journal, at least in a successful one, you strip yourself naked. You are unmasked, vulnerable, and painfully honest with yourself. In a journal, you write down your most personal thoughts and feelings. For me, journal writing is necessary. It is a way for me to vent. It is a way for me to grow. It is a way for me to evolve spiritually, and when I use the would spiritually, I’m not necessarily speaking about religion. I’m referring to the energy that lives within in me and elevating it to a higher level (I’m a Pisces, so I liked to go underneath the surface). Although journal writing is therapeutic, who wants the world to see who you really are? Not I. So, the thought of someone discovering the real me had me shaking in my boots. I’ve always wondered would I want my journals to be published. And now I know my answer. Heck naw! So, the moral of this story is to keep up with your journal when you are traveling because you don’t want to feel like you have lost a piece of yourself. As for me, luckily my journal was at my grandmother’s house and I had forgotten to put it in my bag. My aunt mailed my beloved journal via postal mail without reading it, thank God. If you have had a similar experience—having lost a journal or thinking you have lost it—please share and post your comment. I’d love to hear from you. Really, folks.
Tag Archives: journaling
It is every writer’s dream to one day make The New York Times bestseller list and have your book selected for Oprah’s Book Club. With that said, what happens when there is such a demand for your work that people become interested in your diary entries? There are a lot of writers that have maintained personal journals: Alice Walker, John Cheever, and Virginia Woolf (just to name a few). To read another person’s diary is a chance to really see that person. You are viewing the self that isn’t shared with the public. I have kept a journal since I was fourteen years old (if you want to learn how I began to journal, click here). Sometimes, I ask myself the following question: Would I want the world to see my private thoughts? I don’t think so. However, what I do like about journaling is that you are writing down the history of your life. You are charting your evolution. Hindsight is 20/20. And maybe someone can learn from your mistakes. Maybe someone can become inspired.
I have been journaling ever since I was in 7th grade. My father gave me a green leather journal for my birthday. At first, my entries were very censored and guarded. No lie, my entries would only be a couple of lines about what happened during the day. I was afraid to really write down how I felt because that meant I had to be honest, and who wants to see your bare soul written down on paper? But by my second journal, I started to get real. Instead of a couple of sentences, my entries begin to be half pages. I wrote about who was getting on my nerves, what I wanted, my thoughts and feelings. Now, I’m 25 and I can’t imagine not journaling. Writing down your feelings forces you to confront your issues. It’s also very liberating. Sometimes it can be funny to read journals from your past; it’s funny to read about what you thought was so important was not that important for you to remember five years later. I encourage everyone to journal because it will make you understand yourself better. You are tracking your evolution. Trust me. It will alter your life.