When I was little I started a diary. I didn’t write terribly often but did jot down a few noteworthy occurrences that I now find either quite sweet or very embarrassing to read as an adult. After my childhood diary resurfaced a few months back I decided I would start keeping better notes about random happenings and more specifically the little things that make the days special but not necessarily memorable. I decided that my birthday would be a great way to start this project so have been at this for a couple of months. So far I’ve got my Hello Kitty mini spiral full of random tidbits such as: “lost my laundromat virginity” and “assembled a medicine ball rack 3 times (wrong twice, right once), and “fireworks and the 1812 overture.” I probably wouldn’t have thought much about any of those things beyond the day or maybe day after they occurred but now I’m laughing out loud about using a laundromat for the first time (I forgot soap) and how I couldn’t figure out how to assemble a medicine ball rack (I’ve been known not to follow directions since I was a kid).
Writing is one of the best things I do to stay well. In fact, occasionally it does more for me than a good cardio workout or yoga session. Sometimes my writings are really personal and meaningful and sometimes I use writing as a way to help me sort through my feelings when I’m struggling with tough situations or when I need to make a decision. Many times when I’m having a consultation with someone about whatever lifestyle change they’re trying to make I encourage them to keep a journal about their wellness goal(s). The time it takes to think about your goals, assess whether or not you’re on track, and how you feel when you accomplish them or get sidestepped can be a great time for reflection and even rejuvenation.
Recently I’ve been enjoying creative writing with the book 642 Things to Write About. This book is really fun because half the time I’m writing about a personal experience and half the time I’m just making things up. Several nights a week I flip open this book and fulfill one of the writings. Sometimes I’m not inspired to come up with the prompts so I’ll just read through past entries. I find this actually helps me sleep better once I turn in for the night.
If you’re currently not writing I encourage you to start! It doesn’t have to be anything too complex or long. Simply making lists of the books you read, the places you want to visit, your favorite workout, or compliments you’ve received does the trick. If you find that you want to write more, maybe treat yourself to a fun journal or diary. Yes, I’m very old fashioned in that I like to put pen to paper but you can use your computer if that’s a better fit. One of my favorite journals to read over and over again is my travel journal which I take along with me whenever I’m away from home. In fact, the photo below was snapped of me jotting down a few memorable moments last spring in Madrid.
So whatever it is that you like to write about, or think you might enjoy writing about, I encourage you to take some time for reflection, let your creativity spill out, and record some fun things you’ll enjoy reading years down the road.