Would you like to maintain a diary? Have you? If so, which is the longest amount of time you did it?
I kept a journal (girls call'em "diaries," dudes call'em "journals," haha) for about a dozen years in the 80s and 90s. It started out as a class assignment when I was a freshman in high school - we had to keep a diary for 30 days - and I enjoyed it so much that I just kept on doing it after the assignment ended. As I grew older it fell by the wayside because I simply didn't have the time to update it regularly anymore.
I still have all the notebooks in a box in my closet and occasionally I'll look through them. It's fun (and occasionally cringe inducing) to see what was on my mind back then.
I wanted to maintain a diary (I call it a journal) since I was a teenager. The reason was simple. I wanted to be a writer, and everywhere I read that this was a crucial step. For many years, it was only easy to do when I was traveling. But, about six years ago, I committed to writing every day, and clocked myself for a year. Since then, though I can't say I write in my journal every day, it's probably quite close - well over 300 days a year. I strongly recommend this for anyone who wants to become a better writer. There are many ways of writing in a diary or journal - find what works for you. If you're not sure where to start, check out the beginning of The Artists Way by Julia Cameron, and try morning pages. They work for my wife. It's not exactly what I do now, but it's a great approach.
I used to keep a dream journal for several years during my teens. Every time I had a dream or nightmare I would jot it down in the hope that seeing it on paper would help me make sense of it. One of the things that amazed me was how varied the dreams were, and even if I only partially remembered one then I would still record it. The weirdest dream that I can still remember was walking through a field in the English countryside, next thing I knew a talking horse came up to me and told me to 'find the ladder'. He kept repeating this to me and then just flew away, yes flew away. Then I woke up hehehe...
I keep a diary each time I go on holiday as it's good to look back on the unusual things I've done, or places I want to remember details of.
I also keep a diary for my grandchildren, one for each, relevant to the times I've seen them and to the progress they're making in their speech, walking etc as they grow up; two are almost 2 years old and one is nearly 12, so I've got lots to talk about and a great variety of things to discuss. I also put info in about me and what I'm doing, events in my life and addresses if they change. I'm hoping it'll be interesting reading when they're older and I'm not around to answer their questions!
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