Why Journal?

Dave Caolo, writer/curator of nerdery, prompted me to elaborate on the advantages of journaling for writers, after my review of Day One.

I’ve been writing for some kind of publication for 24 years. I write 8 hours a day professionally and about 1 or 2 hours for pleasure. But I know that if I could squeeze in another hour, I’d be a little better. Journaling is a small part of that 1 or 2 hours of writing for pleasure. 

I can’t say what it’ll do for you, but, for me, journaling:

  • Clears my head of the dozens of unresolved ideas that have gathered throughout the day, which gets me to sleep faster.
  • Allows me to ask myself questions, which usually resolves big issues, without needing to hire a  consultant or search for an expert (which is what “busy” professionals do today instead of just focusing on a problem that may be slightly painful).
  • Gives me an excuse to write out everything I’m grateful for happening on that day. This is biggie - gratitude is the most effective solution I’ve found to combat negativity, fear and anxiety. There’s always something to be grateful for during the course of a day.

Above all, the most important reason to journal can be summed up by Socrates:

“The unexamined life is not worth living.”