Journals are private. Everyone knows – even if they put conscience aside – that no one should read someone else’s private journal without permission. We have this social courtesy embedded in us because we believe that a private journal includes someone’s innermost thoughts.
The question is, how much of a person’s true self is placed in their journals?
This question doesn’t require an answer, as much as it requires reflection.
My early journals were more of a recording of day-to-day events, and outbursts of feelings, usually negative. But just writing about how you love someone or hate someone or are upset with someone, doesn’t mean you are sharing your self in those pages.
Subconsciously, I censored what I wrote. Not in everything. But in great many things. I realise that in hindsight. Things that seemed too horrible to write, things that made me feel guilty for thinking them, I did not write them.
Since I started making more conscious effort to search for self through journaling, things changed. I decided that if a journal was to be a place for my private thoughts, then it must have all of me – good and bad.
If I were to go deeper in my mind, attempting to unravel the puzzle of my own personality, then I had to understand all aspects of my personality. It’s been a long and gradual process. But now the rule is this:
As soon as I question whether I should write something down. I do.
If it makes me hesitate whether it should be in my journal, then it should.
No matter what your reasons are for keeping a journal, unless you do it with complete honesty, it’s not completely effective.
If you keep it for yourself, for memories, for therapy – what good are those things if they don’t show you the truth?
If you keep it as a legacy to your descendants – it would be travesty to give them an incomplete picture, because by doing so you are creating a fake history. You are lying not only to yourself, but to the future.
Honesty is the essence of journaling. If you can’t be honest in your journal, you can’t be authentic as a person. Without authenticity, you will never have the contentment of being happy with who you are, and being successful on your own terms.
ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY:
Answer this question honestly – how honest are you in your journal?
What effort will you make to be more honest?