My cousin gave me a beautiful notebook for my eighth birthday. The pages had a woody fragrance and looked like the parchments we see in the Harry Potter films. I started wondering how I could make the best use of the notebook and after some contemplation, I took a decision. My sister used to keep a diary and inspired by her, I decided to start keeping one as well. I started filling the pages of the notebook with my thoughts, feelings and curiosities.
Looking back, I am grateful to my eight-year-old self for the decision he took as I have identified many benefits of keeping a diary, some of which I will be talking about in this article.
A PRESERVER OF YOUR MEMORIES
People tend to forget many of the insignificant, but interesting, things they go through everyday. Keeping a diary can help you solve the problem to an extent. It will be possible for you to take a walk down memory lane whenever you decide to read your old diary entries.
A WITNESS TO YOUR GROWTH
Experiences shape people. Successes fill them with a sense of purpose and failures give them a reason to work harder. Unbeknownst to them, all these things, as insignificant as some of them might seem, help them grow. These little events are the tiny beads of the necklace that life resembles. While photographs document your physical growth, keeping a diary is the best way to make sure your mental growth stays archived as well. Years later, when life manages to make you a much stronger and determined person, you can skim through the pages of your old diaries and observe how the tiniest things used to bother you when you were younger. Although our gradual mental growth is intangible, it can be captured and preserved using a diary.
A diary can be a trusted friend, a confidant. Addressing your diary by a name, you can write your entries in the form of letters to a beloved friend. There are times you might find it hard to verbally express yourself. There are things you might not want to share with someone else. In these cases, you could just resort to your diary and pour out your soul. However, it should be kept in mind that a diary cannot, and should not, replace real life friendships by any means. Your diary should be one of your several confidants, not your only confidant.
A RECORD OF FAMILY ANECDOTES
My mother recently discovered a diary kept by my late grandfather. It is filled with family anecdotes and descriptions of family members I didn't even know about. This made me realise that decades or even centuries later, your descendants could come across your diaries while rummaging through heirloom bookshelves and get to know more about you and your family history.
When he is not dealing with mood swings, Shounak Reza devours books and tea and longs for eras he has never lived in. You can contact him at www.facebook.com/shounakreza