In the past, many people regularly kept personal diaries, where they recorded the day’s events and their observations. Without diarists like Anne Frank and Samuel Pepys, we wouldn’t know much about the personal side of our history.
Although people nowadays keep blogs or vlogs, and record their lives on social media, very few of us put pen to paper and write down our experiences. Why not try it?
Keeping a diary is something I’ve tried many times in the past, but until three years ago I never succeeded longer than a week. My first successful experience was a month-long travel journal from a backpacking trip – I wanted to make sure I could remember every single detail of such an exciting experience! I was proud to have done that, but I am even more proud to say that for the last five months I have kept a diary going! I am living abroad for a short period of time, and I want to remember all my new experiences in the future.
So why am I doing this? And why do I think you should too?
1. You can record special events.
People take photos so they can remember days out, parties, etc. A diary is like a completely personal, written photo, recording the things only you saw in as much or as little detail as you like.
2. You can record normal events too.
You might think that normal days are boring, until you start writing. I’ve started seeing the special aspects of normal events, such as funny remarks or interesting things I’ve seen.
3. You can record your thoughts and feelings.
You remember how things made you feel on certain days or in certain places, so your memory is more detailed.
4. This is a kind of therapy after bad days.
Getting your feelings written down on paper feels much better than keeping them to yourself. It can also help you think about things more clearly, and maybe even help decide how you feel about things if you are unsure.
5. In fact, it’s therapeutic even on good days!
Make a hot drink, snuggle into a comfy chair and take half an hour just for you and your diary. It feels great!
6. You can improve your writing skills.
Practice makes perfect! Seeing your writing develop is very rewarding.
7. Why not try a foreign language?
Practise your language skills and improve your vocab, without worrying about mistakes – it’s for you, not for anyone else!
8. Appreciate your successes.
Sometimes, we don’t appreciate what we achieve – writing down a challenge you overcame and how you did it makes you realise this!
9. Assess your mistakes.
On the other hand, you can understand things you could have done better, if you have to write something down and consider it.
10. Leave the future You something to look back on!
In a year or so, you can see how you have developed as a person. If you revisit a place, you can read what you saw or felt last time. Maybe you’ll even show future generations what you used to be like!
I wish you the very best of luck with your diary!
Do you write a diary? If not, would you like to?