I made an early New Year’s resolution today

and that was to (finally?) start journalling regularly.

Expressing things without filters is liberating. Journalling is a personal log of one’s life, events, thoughts, feelings, and ideas typically associated with a point in time.
- Paul Mayne

I suppose I’ve always had some form of tumblr/blogspot in the past, and of course I blog for MIT Admissions, but I don’t consider those journals because (1) I didn’t write in them daily and (2) I wasn’t writing for myself; I was always writing with an audience in mind.

These next few years of college should be some of my most formative years – learning things, meeting people, finding out what I want to do in life – and I’d like to have a record to reflect back on. I’ve regretted not keeping a journal in the past – so no time like the present, I suppose!

I also find that writing things down helps me process my day and look at it more objectively. In this fast-flowing stream-of-consciousness of life, it’s easy to get lost. But I don’t want to view life as just things that happened; I hope journalling will help me step back, slow down, and take a breath. To see things from multiple perspectives.

Physical writing is for chumps of course, so I’m using an app called Day One and it’s awesome so far. I discovered it through one of The Verge’s recommended iPad app lists.

They described it as sort of like a “private Twitter” with just yourself as the audience. Intriguing concept, though in general I think I’d prefer a mix of longer journal entries (#longform) mixed with short snippets of my life (#micro).

Oh yeah, that’s the nice thing about using an app as opposed to paper; I can take advantage of tags as organization.

So far I’ve got:
#justlittlethings (inspired by the tumblr)

and I also tag names of people.

I’ll try to keep the number of tags low – nothing worse than trying to figure out how to tag a post when you’re just trying to get your thoughts down in writing.

I should also figure out how refined these journal entries should be. Obviously no one else will ever see them – aside from the ones I turn into public posts, like this one – but knowing me and my attention to detail, I hate shoddy pieces of writing. Still, I’ll have to strike a balance to capture an honest filterless portrait of my life, while not devolving to typical social media noise.

Day One really is a beautiful app, and I hope I can consistently use it. Initial goal: journal every day for a month. I should set aside a block of time every day to journal. Maybe after dinner?

As Chris Hadfield wrote in his AMA: “My goals for 2014 are the same as always – learn things, be useful, feel satisfied, play music, laugh, and have fun, every day.”

I’ll add “and keep a log of all of these things” to that list.

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