In our fast-paced world with its ever-advancing computer technology, it appears that print media is succumbing to the seemingly more desirable mode of transmission of information at breakneck speed via the Internet. Quick bytes, just a snippet of the day’s happenings, the majority in visual representations, are all we need. We get the picture and move on. We “talk” to each other through abbreviations and acronyms in instant, text, and Twitter messages and in emails, most of which are deleted and lost forever as quickly as they are received. More’s the pity, for there is much to be gained through permanent written communications, which provide the reader not only with opportunity for full consideration and analysis of issues but also repeated, ad libitum retrieval and leisurely study, digestion, and review.
In spite of the emphasis on virtual expression, more people are discovering the value of handwritten, diary-like recordings of their personal lives and perspectives through journaling. Perhaps this is because they realize that our spans of existence are very short, and what we have to say may never be heard or remembered unless we document it in writing.
Everybody has a story to tell. Each narrative provides an essential, unique and fascinating part of the tapestry of life. Journaling is an excellent way to capture our stories. We simply jot down our thoughts and reactions to events as they occur, day by day, or we chronicle special happenings or defining moments in our lives or memories of long ago.
The type of book in which these records are made varies widely from a simple steno pad to fancy volumes with special covers, binders, and designs, others with personalized artwork and custom logos, some even boasting of acid-free, long-lasting paper. So numerous are one’s options that there are entire stores specifically devoted to journals and related supplies.
By expressing our thoughts through the discipline of writing, we gain a greater understanding of ourselves, each other and life in general. Through the books and letters of our ancestors, their actual words, we are able to connect with those of past generations, come to know them personally, and comprehend their times. Through our tales, we speak to those in the future who someday will be searching for a glimpse of us and what life was like in the early 21st century.
If instant knowledge of the state of our world is needed, a quick consultation online can give us the pertinent facts, but there is so much more to the story. When all is said and done, will there be any lasting record of what has really transpired here? Let us never forget the importance of ensuring that these days and times and our thoughts about them will be fully preserved in writing long after we sign-off.
Here’s to Journaling!