Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Journaling...Do You?

I have always enjoyed writing, reading, and words in general. Sometimes I jot down words because they interest me but other times I skip right over words I have no idea what they mean! Yup, I do that! Do you? When I had my own classroom each student had a dictionary and they were tucked into every shelf and nook just to encourage (force) my students to not skip words but to take the time and learn a new word. But, I have to say that when you are knee deep in a book and you've found your comfort zone and rhythm of reading the last thing you want to do is to pick up and pull out the old dictionary. Nope, not happening here. I get it now. Just because you don't know a word and it is good practice to learn its meaning something is taken away from "the moment". When (or if) I get back into the classroom this is a practice I will change. Read away but jot down that word to (maybe) look up later on.

Good introduction? Now that I got your attention do you write in a journal? I've read that many famous people (Oprah, Maya Angelou etc.) write in journals and have for most of their life but do you? I have been in and out about writing in a journal. There is more evidence to prove that you should than not but are you comfortable with writing your own words down in a book? I like to hold onto my words and thoughts but have also journaled at different times. Why don't I stick with it? I have this weird feeling that what would I do if someone some day decided to pick up this book and started to read it? What would I do? How would I feel knowing that this was a private book? Is it still private once you put your soul onto paper in the form of words? So instead of just letting the words flow from hand to paper I get caught up in the "what if" after the fact? Sometimes feelings and thoughts could be taken out of context (if read). Sometimes you don't want to "go there" and just need to get it out without really addressing that "thing" that is bugging you. I don't see journaling as a means to hurt people but a means to learn about who you are at the time you pick up that pen and jot down your words. Some people have gone onto publishing books because they have kept such a discipline. Me, not so much. When I was done journaling in the past, I always felt that I needed to "dispose" of my work. Yes, I did and only now realize that I should not have done that. It/they would have given me a perspective on my life that no one else could. I do think sometimes that you just don't want to relive what you wrote so why keep those words?

I always have high hopes then they dwindle off. I really do have good intentions of writing but for some reason or another I just don't do it. I know I have missed some important times but I can't go back but only go forward. I do have to admit that even though I don't bare my soul on paper you can see my soul. I make sense of my world through pictures. I love photography and my pictures show how I see the world and what is important to me. I look back at my life with the pictures I've taken and not so much the words I neglected to scribble. So even though I am not a die hard journaler I have my pictures. I can always tell you the story behind the picture and retell the events that lead up to me taking the picture. I don't want to miss anything and so that is how I journal. I want to get back to the pen to paper form of writing but right now I need to overcome the big "what if someone found it and read it" thoughts. I have nothing to hide but my honesty will be reflected on these pages and I don't want people to know everything that runs through my heart, mind, and soul.

I feel more inspired to journal and write especially after reading an older copy of the Oprah magazine. Specifically it talked about poetry but bits and pieces of Oprah's personal journals were shared. I felt uneasy AND THEY WEREN'T EVEN MY JOURNALS! I look at Oprah and see how far she has come and I am sure her ability to journal has helped her achieve her success (among others). Sometimes my feelings are so powerful that I know I need to write but other times I just need to sit quietly and absorb my internal reactions to the outside world. I over analyze everything and run scenarios in my head about what I could have done differently or how I wished I were more quick-witted with my mouth or what will come of this. But the bottom line is that I needed to learn something from that interaction and would have an easier time figuring things out if I wrote down my thoughts and feelings immediately so the next time I am faced with a similar situation I can handle it accordingly. Who knows. Maybe after this post I will pick up my nice new journal and start to write, write, write!

If you are a journaler do you enjoy it? Do you have any fear associated to journaling?

Good luck with your methods of keeping track of your memories! Happy writing friends!

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