When I was little there was this period when I used to write in my diary every single day. Just a couple of sentences usually, sometimes only one. “Today we did arts and crafts and we made seals out of paper” comes to mind as an example. Just one little line, but apparently it was the highlight of my day. I filled up an entire notebook, which I’d gotten as a gift from my aunt, with entries like that.
I never was that consistent again when it came to writing in my diary. I used to get all motivated and buy myself a pretty new notebook, usually after watching Bridget Jones’ Diary. But after a few days I got tired of writing daily, so it became once a week, then once a month, once every couple of months… And then when that familiar surge of motivation reared its head again, I wanted to buy a new notebook to start over. You know, fresh start and all that. As a result, I have tons of only halfway filled notebooks at my parents’ house.
It always made me feel a little guilty, whenever I abandoned another diary, because it is so much fun to read through old diaries, see what I was up to back then, remember how I felt.
Then, back when I wasn’t doing all too well in 2013, I started to write more frequently and realised it was quite comforting to write about everything that bothered me. So I made a plan. In 2014, I was going to write in my diary every single day. This time, I was actually going to do it because this time, it was different (which was what I told myself everytime, but let’s forget about that for a second).
And guess what? I did it!
I bought a new notebook (the one with the flowers), and started writing on January 1, 2014. I also printed a “Don’t Break The Chain” calendar, which I’m pretty sure was a crucial part of me actually writing every day. This calendar is a really useful tool, but so simple: you just cross off every day you have done the task you wanted to do, and after a while you’ve created a chain of crossed off days. I don’t know about you, but I’m the kind of person who does not want to break the chain under any circumstances. I go all twitchy at those kinds of things.
My only goal with this was to write every day — I didn’t set myself a certain amount of words, or lines or anything. So there are diary entries which just say “Today was so much fun but I’m so tired right now, I can’t even write about it. Going to bed.” There are also entries that go on for quite a few pages. There were times I wrote about really personal stuff, things that were bothering me, but other times I just wrote down what I did that day. There are also entries that simply consist of a nice quote I came across on Tumblr or in a book, which I wanted to remember, or which reflected how I felt.
On Wednesday the 24th of September, I filled the very last page of the flowery notebook with my writing. That hadn’t happened in at least 10 years! I was really proud of myself for that. Today I noticed that diary is already going a little yellow around the edges, which made me smile.
This was a nice little experiment. I found out I can actually pull through and write every single day. And I’m not planning on stopping now. It’s become part of my routine, and I think writing down a little bit about your day every day is a nice habit to have.
What about you? Did you write in a diary as a child? Do you write in a diary now? I’d love to know!