You might not have written in a journal since you were a child, if ever. However, whilst it might seem a bit airy-fairy and pointless to you at first, it has many benefits. It is yours to turn in to anything you want, whether it be a personal growth log, an educational planner (see Scribbr’s plagiarism checker to aid your essay writing), a memory book, or a combination of things.
It can help you remember
It’s all in the detail. Most of the time we remember events but might not be able to recall how we actually felt in those exact moments, with the memory becoming more distant and less vivid as time goes by. If you keep your journal updated, you can include in it what certain moments in your life made you think and feel. This can be very insightful if you ever read your notes back. You can compare your former self with your present, which can sometimes highlight quite stark differences in your way of thinking and how you have developed.
Set and achieve goals
You could use your diary as a place to put your goals in place, with an aim to complete them for a set date. You can then write down your daily or weekly progress, and see when you are more productive to try and help motivate you and get you closer to your goal. It could be something as simple as remembering to have a nutritious breakfast each day or making sure you have a phone call with your mum at least once a week. Every little helps.
It can help you let off steam
Feel like you have nobody to talk to? You don’t need anyone! Let your thoughts out on to the page in front of you, judgment-free. Let a weight off your shoulders. It can help to decrease your anger and sadness, as it has therapeutic benefits and can help you to analyze situations with greater clarity.
It is yours and only yours
Personalize it. Make it your own. Nobody else ever need to see the contents of your diary, which gives you free rein to put in it whatever it is you, please. You can be your complete, unforgiving self and your journal will never question it or argue with you. Finger paint in it, stick chunks of hair in it, pop pictures in – there are no rules. Just make sure you keep it locked or away from prying eyes if you are writing personal things you don’t wish to be shared with others.