Friday, 25 September 2015

reflecting on the lost art of journalling

#midlife blog cresting the hill

This week's Friday Reflection was to choose a previous prompt you hadn't written on. I chose this one: 
Why is it important to sit back and reflect on your week? How is weekly reflection making an impact on your life?

I try to make a habit of reflecting on my week by writing a few lines in my personal journal. I don't have a very exciting life, in fact I have a fairly ordinary life most of the time. I don't have reams of things to write about when I look back on my week, but I find jotting down a few thoughts and reflections gives me a bit of an overview of how my life is going and where I've been and how far I've progressed. It also gives me an excuse to get out a nice pen and write in my notebook that will last me a few years - then I get the pleasure of finding a new one!

Is there anyone else out there who still hand writes on real paper - or has blogging taken its place in the 21st century? I've noticed that I very rarely now write with a pen on paper. The days of beautifully crafted handwriting are slowly fading and very few people seem to take the time to actually write anything other than on a laptop or a phone. My diary is my way of holding onto that skill.

About once a week I stop and pull out my journal and note the highlights of the week that has passed. If I have a picture or a memento to add to it, that is a bonus. At the most I write about half an A4 page at a time, but it has been an immensely helpful exercise over the years that I have diligently written my thoughts down. It has marked many occasions - both good and bad - I can look back and smile at some of the events that have passed and I can still feel the pain of others.

There have been tough times too, and putting them down in writing has helped me sort my thoughts out and given me a physical acknowledgement of these blows of life that I've weathered. Sometimes history repeats itself and I can look back and see that I survived the storm once and I will survive it again because I have learnt and can apply some of that this time around.

Journalling is as old as time itself and I can picture medieval women sitting in their towers with their ink and quill writing about the tournament they watched or the visitors they received. It's also a part of the letter writing and receiving of Edwardian England and Jane Austen and the Bronte sisters. There is so much history that goes with keeping a journal, although I can't see mine being of any value to future generations! But I love the feel of putting pen to paper and capturing a few moments of my week and so I will continue to hold on to my "dear diary" for a few more years to come.



I thought I'd leave this post with the sad cat diary that makes me smile every time I watch it (kind of ironic really.......)

53 comments:

  1. My favorite type of journal is a 5 year journal. Now that I'm in the 2nd year, its fun to see what I was doing last year at this time. I wish I'd started one years and years ago.

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    1. I find it really interesting looking back and seeing how things have changed (or stayed the same sometimes) especially things that were causing me a lot of grief at the time.

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  2. I still keep a paper diary/agenda that I carry with me everywhere. I don't like using electronic reminders for things like birthdays and errand lists. I need the joy of crossing things off my list with a real pen, and making notes in margins. I love to read my old ones, and re-live the day again sometimes! xx

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    1. I prefer paper to electronic because I always worry about it disappearing into cyber space or off my phone or whatever & I love crossing things off my list!

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  3. Wonderful post, Leanne! I love journaling and do scribble in my diary as I absolutely love the feel of pen on paper! Actually, diaries and journals have always been a favourite since childhood when I first discovered the joys of journaling! But, it seems to be a dying art nowadays with electronic gadgets taking over our lives like never before. It's one of life's greatest pleasures to pour my heart out on the paper and cherish the memories years from now! More power to your pen, Leanne. 😊

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    1. thanks Esha - it's nice to meet someone who gets the joy of writing with a pen too :)

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  4. I am pretty bad at keeping a journal, I start and go for awhile and then leave it off for ages. The thing is I just love looking back at the times that I have written them. It often puts events into perspective. I recently found a very old entry when we were living in hard situation. According to the diary it was my birthday and my son then 13, cooked the family meal and did the dishes for me. That was so heartwarming to look back on.
    Kathleen
    Fridays Blog Booster Party #25

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    1. It really does put things in perspective - and reminds me that I made it through some tough times and will again!

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  5. I am such a bleeding heart that I was feeling sad for Sad Cat! With our 3 cats I'll now be more attentive.(Just kidding. They run/own the house!)

    Journaling - ah, how I miss sitting for hours thinking about what to enter in my girlhood journal. I miss that and need to make time for it once again. Great post, Leanne.

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    1. thanks Cathy - I just loved the voice over with the sad cats - and our cats run things here too.

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  6. Journaling, in my opinion, can be done with your thoughts also. I feel like in today's society there is so much stimulation, with the tv going, the internet, and those phones!! Sometimes it's nice to just sit and think ---whether you write it down or not! jodie
    www.jtouchofstyle.com
    ps...here from friendly friday on midlife bloggers!!

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    1. Hi Jodie - I agree that it's about slowing down and having a moment of head space and just thinking (which we don't do enough nowadays)

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  7. Great post! You know, for YEARS I kept journals--I still have drawers filled with them. But once I started blogging, that sort of became my journal. I like the idea of preserving thoughts and memories. I'm working on book #2 right now, and it will be just like a journal---my memoir! :)

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    1. wow Marcia - the world will know all your deep dark secrets - but what the heck.....if they read our blogs they'd know them anyway. Good luck with book #2!

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  8. I kept a diary for years and years, all throughout my childhood. I still have those diaries and it is interesting to page through them from time to time. Now I hardly ever write on paper. My handwriting is so bad now I can hardly read it.

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    1. I think our handwriting deteriorates as our typing speed increases Helene - and blogging keeps the journalling spirit alive.

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  9. Doing Julia Cameron's Morning Pages has brought me back to writing - I even use a fountain pen. Nothing compares to putting pen to paper!

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    1. wow! a fountain pen! that is pretty impressive Corinne :)

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  10. Hi,
    I found your post in Kimberly's FB Group. I keep notes for blog posts, and I keep them in my Evernote or memo pad on my phone. Took notes on trip to tell kids; did the same!
    Janice

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    1. I think it's what journalling is going to evolve into Janice - a few die hards will keep using a pen and then it will be a stylus :)

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  11. Great post. Found you via #midlifeluv. My handwriting's also now too awful to use a pen! I can hardly read it. Still no one can ever read my notes over my shoulder in meetings. There's an upside to everything right!

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    1. It's like the new shorthand Rachel - you'll be in demand if there's ever a spy needing a secretary :)

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  12. I am bringing a cute journal and colored pens and a glue stick to Santa Fe in the hopes of upping the ante on my journaling. I have found entries that are 20 years old recently--what fun!

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    1. I wish I was a bit more creative Carol - I've seen some of the picture journalling and it looks fabulous - you'll have to put up a photo of one of your efforts afterwards.

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  13. I give you credit for keeping up with the lost art of handwriting and journaling. I admit I don't write or journal much on paper anymore. I kept a diary in my childhood, but now I do most of my note taking and writing on a laptop or my phone notes. However, I agree putting your thoughts down can help to sort things out and even make you feel better emotionally. By the way please check out my post today. Many thanks Leanne!!!! http://www.asquareofchocolate.com/2015/09/sharing-admiration-blogger-recognition.html

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    1. I'll be over to check you out and see what advice you passed on - and I agree that you would be in the majority for moving to a laptop instead of a journal!

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  14. Yep. Me and journalling. Love it! But my son converted me to using my laptop several years ago. And somewhere, another pen dies . . .

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    1. I think the pen is not going to be mightier than the sword for much longer Diane - it'll be the laptop instead!

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  15. I have given up journaling because I am blogging now - and because my handwriting is illegible!

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    1. I think we'll all be writing like doctors at the rate we're going Sharon!

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  16. I have tons of notebooks, sketchbooks and journals. I love being able to put pen or pencil to paper. It seems to unleash my creativity in a way that doesn't come out on the computer.
    Kimberly

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    1. I do envy creative people Kimberley - it takes journalling to a whole new level!

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  17. It's been a long time since I've journaled regularly... I'm going to view this post as a sign I need to start again! ;)

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    1. I am honoured to be your inspiration Sarah!

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  18. The cat video was really funny. I agree with journaling. Sometimes it is the only way I can figure out what I'm feeling.
    -Tara
    FridayReflections

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    1. Glad you liked the video - it makes me smile! I agree about figuring out what you're feeling.

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  19. Hi Leanne! I think I've mentioned before that I have been doing Julia Cameron's "morning pages" for over 20 years. I do them 5 days a week and write them out longhand. Although I spend most of my daily time on the computer, writing things out is both therapeutic and a form of meditation. Plus I read somewhere that when we write things by hand we are accessing a certain part of our brains that will gradually dissolve if we don't. Scientists aren't quite sure what will happen when people no longer "write" but it will change thinking, they are sure of that. Meanwhile, I can use all the "thinking" I can get and will never give it up. Keep journalling for all the reasons you said. ~Kathy #MidlifeLUV

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    1. I'm going to have to look at these "morning pages" - Corinne mentioned them too - especially now I know it's going to keep part of my brain alive!

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  20. I still love writing on beautiful paper, there is something so soothing about it, but my blog gets more attention than my pen and paper I must admit. That dear diary cat vlog was so cute and funny! Thanks for taking our prompt and writing so beautifully #Fridayreflections

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    1. my pleasure Mackenzie and I agree about how soothing writing with a pen on paper is - hopefully it won't completely die out as laptops take over.

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  21. This is something that I really need to do more of. I often forget to update my journal.

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    1. I try to aim for once a week - but then I saw the Morning Papers girls and they do 3 pages every day - I'm never going to achieve that!

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  22. I could never journal on a device. I think writing by hand is much more therapeutic. I hope young girls still have diaries. It would be sad to think they don't.

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    1. My daughter laughs when she reads hers - especially the bits about her mean mother! And I agree that hand writing is a more personal approach to diaries.

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  23. I used to love journaling but Im so much more comfortable - and fast - behind a key board these days. My handwriting has gotten so bad! In saying that, I have many blank notebooks awaiting my writing hand. I need to get back into it!

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    1. It's interesting how our handwriting deteriorates with time and lack of use - I hope those notebooks get some use in the near future!

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  24. Hi Leanne,
    My journal keeping looks a bit more messy than yours - it's just a pile of papers, notes and post-its that will eventually land in a box and be stored somewhere in the attic. But I love to go back to my old scribbles and pull out notes from 10, 15 years ago and feel as though it was yesterday that I wrote them.
    But seriously, I get a shock every time I come to your blog and discover that you have 46!!!!! comments! I mean you're the most popular girl on the blog! How do you do that? Wow! Congratulations!
    xx Abby

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    1. you are such a sweetie Abby - now I just have to work out how to get 7,000 fb followers :) and btw I also love finding something I wrote 10yrs ago and slipping back in time!

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  25. Journaling is so precious because it helps us look back at what we were thinking or doing in the past..Helps us gain perspective...I love doing it whenever I get time...

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    1. Me too Nabanita - it shows that some things never change but we still move forward and grow and gain wisdom and often see them in a new light

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  26. I haven't journalled in ages! Would love to get back to it. I still love writing with a pen on paper and have several notebooks because I just fell in love with them.

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  27. I've never been patient enough to keep a journal so kudos to you for doing so. That cat video is absolutely brilliant too-what a great post!

    Thanks for joining the #sundaysdownunder link up. I've pinned your post.

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

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    1. thanks for hosting Natasha - love that you're an Aussie too :)

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