I was reading an article on Anne Frank yesterday, and it had me thinking about my long-lost daily routine – writing in a diary.
You see, I was a consistent diarist.
But for the past seven years, I have personal, written notes whatsoever. And I feel that due to that, I am lacking in something.
I was a consistent diarist. I started writing in my primary school years
through secondary school (or high school) and foundation college.
Then blog and blogging came.
I had my first personal blog in my first year of University (which I used for six years) and then the idea of writing in a diary just vanished.Unfortunately that comes with a cost.
Many times throughout my blogging years I know I should have started back with recording and structuring my real, deep and personal thought. I have to emphasize those adjectives. Writing for a blog is different, especially as I was not writing anonymously at that time, and most of my audience were people I knew. I consciously filtered what I wrote – not really because I wanted only some parts of myself be revealed, but because deep inside I am still a private person. I wrote about issues, and my thoughts about certain things but nothing really personal.
It sure has its advantages. My articulacy in conveying my ideas in English (despite it being my second language), is largely contributed by my writing a blog. It helps me to structure my thoughts, present my ideas, improve my vocabulary (I do research before writing a post, not just randomly!) and that allows me to talk more eloquently in the real ‘offline’ conversations.
But a blog is a blog. Even if I write it anonymously (which I did not at that time, or even now), it is a platform where the whole world have the chance to see it.
I don’t feel comfortable writing about the spiritual side of me (or the lack of it). I don’t feel easy sharing publicly about my deepest hope, fear and ambitions. I obviously will not write a simple note on how I should plan my day for instance, which I know is something I would write in a diary. I am in no rush to join the bandwagon of sharing my secrets online.
When I found all my old diaries from those high school years and foundation college days, I could see how these jotting-downs of thoughts helped me. In many moments I could see notes of my frustrated teenage self on how I had been astray spiritually, my so-called crushes, new resolutions that I made from time to time, some copied quotes I found inspiring, some ‘5 steps to become XXXX’ I picked up from my reading. I learnt to find my own strengths and weaknesses, put them down in writing, and started my detailed action plans. Putting them down on a piece of paper is a reaffirmation.
In short, I became more aware of myself through writing a diary.
All of these are done freely, knowing that there is no one who will judge me, no one will ‘like’ or ‘hate’ it, not trying to woo readers or increase hits.
I tried to maintain a blog and write a diary before, but it didn’t work. Too much time needed. So concentrated my writing effort for my blog.
The outcome? After seven years being a retired diarist, I feel that I have lost touch with my very deepest self.
I am thinking of making a comeback, trying again to find my innerself. I need to again be in touch with it.
I need to, like urgently.
Maybe at the expense of this blog.