June 13, 2021

Journal

Keeping A Journal

Keeping A Journal should not be hard, but many believe it must be some perfect collection of earth-shattering revelations or ideas.

That was the use of a Journal in the 1600’s through 1800’s.  Only scholars and scribes wrote in Journals.  Only those fortunate enough to have been taught how to write used a Journal. What possible use would the average peasant have for learning to keep a journal. They would need to know how to read and write and they can spend precious time doing that instead of working.

But they did learn to read and wrote recipes, notes to families, and applied for jobs.  Wasn’t a resume a type of journal? If you look through the dictionary you’ll find a wide assortment of journals, including blogs. And I would argue Facebook is nothing but an interactive journal.

Let’s look at the Merriam-Webster definition of:

Journal – Noun

  • A record of experiences, ideas, or reflections kept regularly for private use.
  • An account of day-to-day events

Journal – Verb

  • To keep a personal journal,
  • To enter or record daily thoughts.

Journal Synonyms – Noun

-book, bulletin, magazine, newspaper, paper, periodical, review, digest, daybook, diary, blog, logbook -  and others.

The first definition is the most accurate for journalists.  It’s a record kept regularly.

Based on the list of synonyms – what type of Journal do you keep?

I keep several as reference material and a place to store ideas for future blog posts. Here are the main ones:

Tourism blog with a Travel Journal.  Ideas and information for visitors coming to our community. Notes on tourism promotions and heritage tourism ideas to pass to our local Museum.

Small Business with a Ms. Biz Journal and one for the local Chamber Ambassadors I volunteer for.  Chamber luncheons, Economic reviews, and information to share with the local Women Business Center’s MS Biz Program to help new owners answer the question “What Do You Do?”

Journal Writing for Jana’s Journals.  The journal is part Journal writing tips, writing prompts, and encouraging ongoing use by Women in Business.  A Business Journal is so valuable in making decisions and tracking their success.

My husband is a silversmith and creates gemstone jewelry.  When I travel with him, I take his journal to capture note, conversations, teaching ideas and misc. information.  When we travel, we talk about everything under the sun and it’s most productive if I make notes. 

I have a website I use for reviews.  Mostly it’s about advertising mistakes and awards.  I mute most ads to determine if I know who the ad is about, why they’ve spent the money for a TV ad, and what is the qualify.  I don’t bother with the insurance ads as they seem to be in war of whom can create the dumbest.

Most weeks I post to all five, others not so much.  But my focus is quality not quantity, so I don’t worry if there isn’t a post for one week.  All the information for these posts comes from my journals. 

One thing you need to think of for your Journal – it may not be storytelling.  You can write anyway you please, but there is a big distinction between storytelling and journaling.  For Journaling you can have:

Run-on sentences

A simple list of ideas

Places where you’ve scribbled out something.

Lousy penmanship – okay if you can read it.

And tense may be wrong, it might have misspellings, etc. 

Journaling is designed to allow you to free-flow your thoughts and put them on paper (or computer if you’re more comfortable). 

The Point

The point is to write.

For me, it’s my place to be messy and unorganized (my life dictated organization and planning) and my journal is anything but.  Whether you use the space to scribble, write or be detailed with a bullet journal, just write.

Find a pen and paper and get started.  Do it every day – even if it is just one word and the date.

Write!    Because #Journal Writing Matters!

About the author 

Jana Hassett

Jana is at the core of Jana’s Journals – writer, editor and resident Elevator Pitch promoter – her chief responsibility is content creation. When she’s not crafting helpful content for the What Do You Do? Blog, she’s serving as an Ambassador for her local Chamber of Commerce, or (through the local Women’s Business Center) teaching small business owners how to write and give their Elevator Pitch to promote their business in order to accomplish her goal of “Passing It On”.

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