Some people journal to express their feelings and some do it to organize their schedules, but at the end of the day what they are left with is an artifact of their life during the period of time they wrote it. I have always been big on journaling whether it was a diary of my own Pokemon that I created at age seven or my angsty diary entries during middle school when life seemed to be most dramatic. Although looking back on these entries can be a bit embarrassing, at the end of the day, it is such a fulfilling experience to be able to examine periods of my life and know exactly what I was thinking about or doing.
Lots of people see the appeal in the idea of journaling, but can't seem to commit to the work it takes. The thing is, not all journaling is work. Journaling does not need to be some grand process where you pour your heart out into a chunk of words that take forever to spit out but can be as simple as writing down all the food you eat every day or drawing out your feelings as they come to you. As beautiful as bullet journals and scrapbooks are, if you do not have the resources, time, or level of skill to do this then you should not let that dissuade you from documenting your life.
To be quite frank, I hate sitting down and writing about my feelings in a book that can never understand or respond to what I have to say. This is the method I think of when I think of journaling, but when I look at my pile of journals filled with various ways of documenting my life, I realize how many ways there are to record my life experience that work better for me.
One year when school was coming to an end, I decided to take it upon myself to make sure it was really going to be a summer to remember. At the time my go-to method of journaling was writing everything I did during my day in my notes every night before going to bed, but since it was summer I was supposed to be taking a break from writing and doing work. In order to work around this mindset, I ended up filming one second of every day and by the end of the summer, I had a video to remember everything I did with my break.
The point of all this is, no matter how you decide to do it, having physical representations of the life you live now are the relics that you will hold onto for the rest of your life to memorialize the experiences that you go through that make you who you are. This article is a wake-up call to those of you who let life pass by without stopping to preserve parts of it for your future self to cherish.
I have journals of every food I ate or made from my foodie phase and photo albums of pictures I took when I first got my camera, all personal recollections of what consumed my life at the time of putting those together. Without realizing it, I have always managed to capture moments in my life in different, but memorable, ways. Especially in the digital age that we live in, it is so much easier to create a method of journaling that is suited perfectly for you.
As much as people try to live in the present and plan for the future, we all find ourselves feeling nostalgic of the past, and being able to look at it from the perspective of being in it rather than looking back at it is something everyone should be able to do. I strongly encourage you to find what way of journaling works best for you, because although this term seems very specific and somewhat intimidating, the possible ways of journaling and recording your life are endless.