Two nights ago, I asked my boyfriend if he kept a diary when he was younger, and he just kind of shrugged and said, “yeah, but not for a lengthy period of time.”
I, on the other hand, DID keep a diary. In fact, I still have a personal diary that I write in – not as often as I’d like to, but it’s sitting on a shelf in my room, just waiting for me to pick it up again.
Keeping a diary is extremely theraputic. You can jot down any ideas or thoughts you may have, how you’re feeling about a particular situation, how your day was, what you did that day, what you ate, what you wore, who you have a crush on.. it’s your own private therapist.
Your diary knows everything about you; your likes and your dislikes, your hopes, wishes and fears. Your diary can be private and for your eyes only. Your diary can be a public blog. Your diary can also be read outloud in front of a room full of strangers.
Sometimes, you just need somebody to talk to who won’t judge you, and that can be your diary.
Mortified Nation is a documentary on Netflix based on a group that travels from city to city and allows regular people to get up on stage and read entries from their childhood diaries. You can learn more about it here.
Embarrasing? You bet.
Entertaining? Oh yes.
Educational? In a way, yes.
It highlights the importance of being able to look back on your childhood and see the events that shaped you into the person you’ve become today. Maybe that fight with your mom is why you’ve been holding a grudge against her for so long. Perhaps that really rough breakup is why you have a hard time trusting people. It’s interesting to look back and see the small things you used to sweat over when you were younger.
When I open my diary and look back to even just a little over a year ago, I was a rambling mess. My thoughts and emotions were all over the place. Now, I’m still a little unstable, but it’s gotten a hell of a lot easier to understand where these feelings come from now, and what to do about it.
Moral of the story: journaling in a diary is beneficial to your mental health.
But don’t just take my word for it, go out and journal!