I have talked about journaling many times in the last several years and do you know why? Behind every picture is a story, a reason you grabbed your camera at that very moment to snap the picture. So I thought today I would give you the Top 10 Reasons YOU Should Journal.
- We forget. At last report we are all human and as such, we have memory problems at some point in our lives. There is nothing to be ashamed about – it happens to the best of us. This is why writing down your story is so important. Imagine that tomorrow you are out for your daily walk and you are struck by a car and get severe amnesia. Will anyone else know all that you remember about the pictures you too? Will people even know who the pictures are of?
- To pass on personal thoughts, insights and memories to future generations. This ties in with #1. You can be sure that your grandkids won’t know who is in the photo and will probably toss them out. (have you noticed the younger adults don’t keep much “stuff”?)
- To include special memories and even inside jokes that you simple cannot convey thru just paper and embellishments? Like the time my grandmother would tell “hairlip” jokes at Christmas. We KNOW they are politically incorrect, mean spirited and just not acceptable – but we sure did laugh when she did it. Ok, this memory you might want to put into hidden journaling. Grammy would never have said these outside her house to anyone, but I don’t think I will ever forget that night.
- To create vivid snapshots of the personalities of our treasured family members. As I go through my family history on Sundays I often look at the stern faces from the late 1800’s and wonder if the people were always grumpy or if this was just a bad picture day. I know life was a lot harder then, but what made them tick, and made them smile? As time passes, the people with the answers pass and no one is there to answer the question about Great Aunt Mary Ellen Ingraham.
- To capture your exact feelings, moods and emotions related to particular events. The photo might be of your son on the floor playing with his son. The photo alone you would think “oh that’s nice” but the photo doesn’t show you that while watching the two of them I had tears in my eyes because it reminded me of being on the floor playing with my own children. Photos only begin to tell the story. The old saying “A picture says a thousand words” and while you might think it so, unless you tell, those words will be buried along with the photos.
- To leave a sampling of your handwriting. You might hate your handwriting and typing is easier, but you don’t know what sweet memories it may invoke in a loved one. I can’t tell you how much I love to look at my grandmother’s recipes, in her own handwriting and cooking stains.
- To remember details. You might remember a friend from grade school, but do you remember how they became your friend? What you did together that was special?
- To give dimension to the story of your life and character to the people you know. You want the people that come after you to know about you – go back to #6 as an example.
In short, journaling is important not only for you when you get forgetful, but the ones that follow you in the next life.