blogging, Motivational

Is a Blog an Online Journal?

“There is no stress in the world, only people thinking stressful thoughts and then acting on them.” -Wayne Dyer

Do you write in a journal?

I’ve had many diaries – I just don’t write in them, on a regular basis. To be truthful, I’ve started new journals more times than I can remember, being seduced by those blank pages and pretty, patterned hard-cover notebooks. I usually stop writing in them, after just a few weeks.

Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

Travel Journals

Some journals are functional, chronicling trips overseas. I have a few of those. Travel diaries are invaluable for constructing blog posts and triggering delightful memories long after the actual events have passed by.

Some entries in my journals are records of inspirational sayings, useful tips and random information. Others are mere scribble: words written in haste; created amid a torrent of emotion. Words that tumble sadness or happiness in a wash on the page, in the same way a river breaks its bank, in flood.

It might be a good thing my handwriting is somewhat illegible!

Don’t try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say.

It’s the one and only thing you have to offer.

~ Barbara Kingsolver

Despite journals having a place in my life, blog posts have become a substitute journal. Yet they are transient and have a short shelf life, (who reads old blog posts), so I wonder if a blog will become irrelevant, or less permanent than a hardcover, hand-written book over time?

That said, in the darkest of times, I find it helpful to hand write in real time, in a notebook. It constitutes a tactile flow of thoughts into a concrete form, (from brain to hand to book). It facilitates a release of intense thoughts from my headspace. Once written, I rarely read a journal entry again. The processing of emotion is complete.

So why then, do I keep a drawer full of old journals?

It seems there can be a deeper role for journaling, as this yoga teacher explains:

Journaling in tandem with meditation is useful. Expressive writing studies, (there are over 1000), show that journaling deep emotions aids physical health. It can help those who suffer from chronic health conditions. It can reduce days in hospital after surgery!

Studies show people who journal tend to talk, laugh, socialise more and sleep better. Those who journal are more likely to acknowledge when something bad happens and they use journaling to process their difficult experiences.

It turns out that putting stuff into words changes the way it is organised in our minds. Constructing a story from our ups and downs helps us recover from hard times and savour enjoyable times.

And it’s free.

www.thenomadyogi.com/post/meditation-grounding-practice
pensive thoughful looking upward

Is blogging different from journaling?

Is writing a therapeutic activity for you?

Why do you think the creative writing processes transform emotions?

The skill of writing is to create a context in which other people can think.

~ Edwin Schlossberg

http://www.be-a-better-writer.com/creative-writing-quotes.html
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186 thoughts on “Is a Blog an Online Journal?”

  1. That’s an EXCELLENT quote, the Schlossberg one !!
    But no, blog posts aren’t journals, even if they do record some events. The quantitative adverb is key, even if the part of speech be wrong .. erhmmm .. pronoun ? – no. Determiner ? – p’raps .. Sighh ..

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  2. Interesting questions posed here Amanda. Thoughtful responses will be more post-lenght than comment length. But quickly …

    Blogging and journaling are different things. Journals are for me to read. The have raw, unprocessed and unedited thoughts, often rambling, hardly ever coherent. My notes make sense to me and even then, only for a period in time. I admire people who can write diaries with such detail and coherency that they can be read by strangers, decades later. That may be a lost art. Lost to me, at least.

    When I blog or do any type of creative writing, I’m writing for other people to read. For me, coherency is an important part of that. I spend a lot of time sorting out what I want to say and deciding how to say it.

    Good writing demands that readers understand what’s being said. The quote “The skill of writing is to create a context in which other people can think” is a great one.

    Does ‘creative writing transform emotions?’ Yes. That’s why it’s creative writing and not technical or informational writing. Good writers unpack emotions and transform it into good stories. The picking apart of human emotions and reshaping it into story is a skill of good writers.

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    1. You admire writers who can write every word with such care that their journals have no corrections. I think of famous diaries of days gone by. Has our thinking sped up, because I don’t think I could write a diary without changing words. My blog posts and paid articles have many revisions. It is how I write now. Did I write like that when younger? No. I wrote and rarely corrected. Perhaps my concentration is diminishing over the years and there are too many thoughts in my head. I wish it were not so!
      If we can write in a way that stimulates thinking then I guess our job as writers will be done! I think this is true whatever the style or genre of writing! Be it informative or entertaining, there can be emotion, or can there? Is there emotion in every piece of non-fiction, Sandy?

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      1. When talking about non-fiction, I make a distinction between technical, information based writing and creative non-fiction. The former has no emotion, the latter does. Technical writing should be fact based & informative; I see no need for emotion in my biology text book or Adobe user manual for instance. And I expect my newspaper to report facts rather than opinions. However, I also like to read investigative journalism which portray life facts with real human stories. Making that connection between fact and impact is a way of stoking emotion.

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        1. Good investigative journalists can stoke emotion for the better, while tabloid investigative journos are best set aside lest the emotion be o.t.t.
          You are right about the computer manual not needing emotion or humour. My son as a five year old used to cause much amusement as his choice of reading matter on visit to my friend’s houses, was a computer manual ! You can imagine the reactions.

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    1. I should be as disciplined as you, Ineke! May I ask do you make more corrections and re-writes now that you can easily do it, with the computer software, compared to when you hand-write? Do you feel your style of writing has changed?

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          1. This makes that I need a lot of time to complete a piece of writing. I’m busy doing a six week memoir writing (only one week left now) about face your fear(of trauma) I’m writing about my husband and the leading up to his suicide. Very, very interesting and fruitful. I learned a lot about how to use words to explain how things were. Different ways of telling the story. The tutor gives feedback on the writing which is so positive I hardly believe it. She even gave some tips on how to write it in a book.

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            1. That tutor and lessons sounds wonderful. I have always felt that writing is a good way, for folks so inclined to write, to process their thoughts. I think you are quite courageous to write about such a sensitive matter and I can’t imagine it is easy, but so good to hear you find it fruitful.
              Would you like to share a link to the lessons?

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  3. Mine certainly is; with the added bonus of developing friendships. One of my greatest pleasures is the interchange between readers, bearing out the truth of the Edwin Schlossberg quotation. This post is a good example

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    1. Congratulations on confirming the same belief as me about blogging, Derrick. There are two parts, the expressive and the interactional. The post and the commentary are two different entities, having two different functions almost – yet both are entertaining and deeply satisfying!

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  4. Interesting thoughts, hon. For me blogging is different than journaling because I’m aware of an audience and being read, while a journal is my scribbles that don’t see the light of day. Though of course, some of the events therein make their way into the blog. The current version is pretty much a diary with pretty pictures but I’ve not had a lot of time to play with it. I like the notion that it helps recovery etc to write down your thoughts, and I’m sure that’s the case.

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    1. I agree that the therapeutic side of expressing thoughts privately, or publicly has value in emotional recovery. We do a tremendous amount of thinking in modern life; at least I know many introverts do, and as such, we can clarify thoughts and their productive purpose by writing them down and examining them, mulling over them, discussing, analysing, via another sensory mode. Your comment also touches on the censorship we do or should place upon ourselves, given that blog posts are publicly available. Respect is paramount in public writing!

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  5. Wow, amazing to stumble across this when I’ve been ruminating over this a lot lately.
    I’ve been maintaining diaries since 2019 and I call her Anne Frank. We have a wonderful friendship. She listens to everything I pour into her, soothes me, heals me. I’m living the life she didn’t get to live- after all, we’re both teenage girls and she couldn’t live until she made it to my age. 2 years of journaling has been life-changing. It has helped me understand the world because I understand myself. I love my relationship with Anne Frank. Of course, I love blogging, but there are things one can’t say in a blog. Example, political views, personal experiences, etc… I reserve them for my Anne friend 🙂 Loved all the quotes in this post and I can attest that they are all true. The Yoga teacher’s words about the therapeutic nature of journaling is true indeed.

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    1. Your collection of thoughts might be an interesting thing to re-visit in years to come, Sam. After all, we are living in a unique time! Anne Frank is an excellent name! Love that she inspired you and you personified the diary as a friend and confidante. In a way, you remind me of a fabulous book on philosophy, called Sophie’s World. If you have read it already, continue on reading this comment, but it might be a spoiler if you haven’t read it. So if you intend to read it, don’t read the next sentence! Sophie’s character is the main protagonist in the book and she takes you on a wonderful adventure ride through philosophy and it is only at the end of the book that it is revealed that she is not a person at all but a …. well you might just have to read it after all!

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      1. I read the next sentence despite the warning 🙈 I don’t regret it. Would love to read the book- it does sound very interesting.. 😀 I’ll try to forget that she is not a person at all but a… You know… 😉

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  6. Interesting subject. I kept regular diaries between ages 11-15, which I took with me upon moving to Tuscany just because I’d be sooo ashamed if somebody found them. Between ages 16-25 (approximately) I kept a scrap book where I collected sayings, song lyrics, one-line descriptions of my days. After that – nothing. Only at age 44, eight years ago, I stared blogging and my blog is my dairy and my scrap book in one. Last May I started to include blogging memories at then end of my daily post, looking back at all my posts from the same day in history. I know that nobody reads old posts, and I don’t think many click on the links to read mine, but I do. It’s been really eye-opening. At the beginning I was SO much more upbeat, bubbly, chatty, I told the world so much more than now when I merely show photos with short captions. Sometimes I can’t believe an old post I find: I don’t remember writing it and it’s so good! Funny and quality writing. So – even if nobody notices a thing, I’m keeping myself entertained, amused and inspired. Isn’t this great?

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    1. Your collection is a chronicle of you, Manja! How you have changed in your needs and priorities. The beautiful difference between blogging and diaries is the ease of adding images, videos and other media to complement or to tell a story in a different way. That is what you are doing and it is for you to be satisfied with the format you choose. Blogs evolve and change as we have discussed before. They are living things in that sense!
      If we aren’t satisfied with a post we write, why would we publish it and send it out to the world to grow wings? Probably why I have so many many drafts sitting there waiting to be born! Haha

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        1. Interesting. I offered you ‘the tool’ in my last comment, yet you say ‘you’ve never seen it’? I don’t understand. And, no, I don’t just click on the links without reading the posts, what would be the point of that?

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  7. I enjoyed this post greatly. When I’m upset about something, I type my thoughts. It’s quicker, and I can read it. It does help organize things and clears my thinking. I don’t keep the files long, because they have already served their purpose.

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    1. Ah, so when you write on your computer and want to cleanse the emotions, it is a temporary file that can then be deleted? Then it is deleted. Sounds like a very healthy way to process and settle then be rid of the intensity of a difficult emotion! Years ago, people may have pounded a pillow or mumbled, or yelled – this seems more mature and it disappears completely! ( unless the recycle bin is never emptied automatically!) Lol. Thanks for sharing that, Anne. It is food for thought.

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      1. Writing thoughts gets them out of your head and organized. I assume files on a computer can turn up, even when you think you have erased them. Just as I never curse aloud, I never write curse words. I don’t make verbal threats and don’t write them. It is prudent to remember someone could read your thoughts when you least expect it. I worked for a man who snooped through employees’ private emails on company computers. He twisted their words and used them against them. It was probably legal, but he was sneaky and underhanded.

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        1. For real? The boss read the employee’s emails? That is creepy and I wonder if it would even be illegal here? Good point about the computer saving them in some dark corner of the hard drive, recoverable only by Techy nerds, but recoverable nevertheless.

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        2. Data is never completely erased from a computer, unless the device is completely annihilated. Whenever you are utilizing a work computer, you should have no expectation of privacy. The machine belongs to the company, so anything entered on it is technically the property of the corporation. The same applies, for example, to work phones. My first job at a large bank in the 1990s was in the funds transfer division. Because of the nature of the business, all phones in the department were subjected to a recording system; meaning all incoming and outgoing calls were recorded. The phones we utilized had two sets of lines; one of which was the so-called “private” line. But they weren’t truly private, as those lines also were subject to being recorded. Associates were made aware of that constantly. If I ever needed to make a personal phone call, I’d go to a group of pay phones in the building’s lobby. This, of course, was a time before cell phones were common.

          Even when I worked for an engineering company, we were informed by management that neither our desks nor our computers were personal equipment and therefore, were subject to be monitored. I recall how one woman was terminated for “stealing” time. She had been coming into the office later and leaving earlier than what she had been recording on her weekly online time sheets. At some point, our project manager became suspicious and – when she wasn’t there – pulled the data log from her computer, which showed exactly when she logged on and off. That’s how they learned she had been cheating. They forced her to correct her time sheets and then fired her. One colleague with whom I still maintain a friendship had been tasked to help that woman with correcting those time sheets and told me afterwards it had taken about 2 hours to make the total corrections.

          Around 2008 that same project manager learned that my immediate supervisor and another colleague had set up their own business. He only learned about it because one of them had used his work computer to facilitate the set up. Neither was terminated, but my supervisor left the company shortly afterwards; claiming he’d found a position with another firm that was “too good to pass up”. Ironically, I came across a fax addressed to that supervisor from a bank regarding a business line of credit. I merely placed the item on his desk and didn’t ask questions.

          As for the individual you mentioned, Anne, I don’t know the exact circumstances of how or why he culled data from the computers of his coworkers. But anyone utilizing these machines in a corporate environment should not behave as if those items belong to them.

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          1. Interesting reflections, Alejandro and I could see why companies feel that they own and they do own, the equipment and thus the information on it. It makes me think of another matter – that of copyright and Intellectual property. A software developer is often prevented from owning/working on his own side projects because while he is employed at a company, he might be using the knowledge gained whilst working there to develop some of his own software which may end up being profitable, so in the employment contracts, the company states they will own any or all the side projects even if the knowledge used to write such software was external to the firm and completed in private time – ie. non work hours. It doesn’t really seem fair but I can see why they do this…..

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  8. I don’t keep a journal, although I have in the past. Usually they’re full of depressing, dark thoughts. I’ve never kept any because I don’t want to focus on those thoughts, nor would I think there would be any value what-so-ever in anyone else reading those dark thoughts at any time in the future. I’m happy using my blog as a sort of journal, but you are right, most blog posts are only read by people in the few days after they’re first written. However, some posts turn up frequently years after they’re first written in Google searches.

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    1. One hopes that blog posts may be useful for longer than a few days, or at least that the effects of reading one might bring some lasting benefit, Chris. Perhaps I should toss out all those old diaries? I had thought that it might be amusing to read them when I am sitting in the nursing home, but now I think I will either be sad and full of regret or not want to read them, should that time come.

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    1. Is that the end and only goal Travtrails? Readership? Is the interaction from readers not valued by bloggers? By getting more readers, you receive I assume more comments, so perhaps we are all seeking more readers even if we do not like to admit it?

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      1. I re-read your post as well as the comments and conclude that it is difficult to generalise. Journals are personal unless printed and blogs are reaching out to people for what ever reason. As for ‘likes’ the numbers give the blogger confidence to continue.

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  9. Amanda, thanks. I used to write in a journal, but stopped after a several books. The time got longer between posts and then I just stopped. I don’t view my blog as a journal per se, but more as a way to comment on events or life. I do go back and look for older posts, so as I did today, I reposted something I had forgotten I had written. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and asking for ours. Keith

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    1. Some older posts are like old friends, stirring fond memories of conversations. I think this matter we have discussed a little before, Keith? Comments add more dimensions to topics, don’t they?
      I like that your blog is more than just a journal of experiences. It is informative and educational more than therapeutic. It is disseminating independent information and viewpoints and that is entirely different from emotional word vomit! StPA started out being impartial, documentative and educational in terms of relaying information and yet, what do you know, without trying it has become more interactively based and therapeutically leaning. Whether that is/was intentional, a subconscious need, I can’t say. I would have to think about this more before answering. Thanks for stretching me to think about blogging motives!

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      1. Amanda, many thanks. Whatever category we place your blog, I will still keep coming back. I appreciate your welcoming tone and subject matter. Take care, Keith

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  10. Some blogs I’ve read have been embarrassingly personal, like a journal, but I don’t think a post is the place for an outpouring of family secrets and emotions. Journals can take care of that side of things I think so I would say that no, a blog is not a journal, or should not be. As a historian I was taught to read journals and diaries with a very skeptical eye; if they were easy to read and well-formed they had usually been self-edited before the words were put down on paper with a view to them being read later. Most political diaries and journals are like this, real journals are a mess of creative thoughts, angst, bitterness, humour and happy memories.

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    1. That is a revelation, Mari! And so very interesting. Naively, I had imagined that those published “Diaries of…xxx,” were reproductions of their words/thoughts. But of course, the political diaries would have to have been self-edited. Good to know that my first edition, messy scribbles are no reflection on the level of organization/precision in my life!
      Can you say which historical diary you found more intriguing?

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      1. Of the historical ones I can only recall Pepys Diary (the one everyone has read I think) but it’s still a brilliant window on to 17th century London. The first one I ever read was when I was a very young child (I was a precocious reader) and that was Captain Scott’s diary of his antarctic exploration which had a profound effect on me and left me crying for days! Then I would include Anne Frank’s diary, Joan Wyndham’s diary and Alan Bennett’s diary as my modern favourites.

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        1. Scott of the Antarctic is a sad tale. The old movie used to be on weekend TV repeats and I couldn’t watch it. It was so depressing. Scott’s words, “this is a Godawful place,” still haunt me. I was never told of Amundsen’s story until I was well out of school. (Such bias existed in my education). His story and perhaps his account may have been more uplifting? Anne Frank’s diary is iconic. A must read for everyone! It still inspires. Her legacy is phenomenonal.

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  11. I haven’t kept a journal-style diary since my teens! I used to write travel journals on ‘big’ trips, and these days I usually do that but on my tablet. I used to harvest my notes for Virtual Tourist reviews, and some of my longer pages there became almost journals of my trips. Then when VT closed I switched to TravellersPoint and my blog there, which I continue to keep going, is indeed a travel journal, with a day-by-day account of trips long and short. But as others have said, it’s written with an audience in mind to a large extent, although primarily for myself as a record of the trip. I can download those blogs as PDF documents to be kept as permanent journal-style records 🙂 But my WP blog is not a journal. I don’t record day to day events, and there’s no sense of chronology. I deliberately move between recent events and past trips, between photos taken locally and those from the other side of the world. I like to tell anecdotes from my travels, join in with challenges, and highlight my photography. I do it all with the expectation that my posts will have some sort of audience, and I’m even mad enough to think my older posts will get read from time to time!

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    1. Sounds like you have a full blogging/journaling plate, Sarah! I do enjoy reading your travel anecdotes! And it has been so wonderful to have you aboard the Friendly Friday challenge team. As I mentioned to Keith, my blog initially was just like yours in it was a chronological travel journal, but evolved to become something quite different and that wasn’t due to Covid at all. I suppose that I have changed over ten years too. Perhaps the blog has changed me? Lol!

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      1. I think it’s only natural that our blogs will evolve over time, just as we do! When I started I wasn’t even aware of blogging challenges, but joining in with them has shaped the direction my posts have taken even though I do still try to stick to my original key themes of travel and photography.

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        1. Yes. I agree Sarah. It is rare that one doesn’t feel the need to change the firmaet of the blog posts. I used to post a Monday Mystery Photo years ago, some followers would still remember that, such as M- R, Snow and Drake. But after more than three years it became a bit stale and I stopped posting, deleting most of the posts. The concept had run its course.

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          1. I can understand how that could happen. But I’m surprised you deleted the posts. I’m not sure I would delete any of mine unless I realised I’d been unwittingly offensive or totally inaccurate across the whole post – both of which I hope is unlikely!

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            1. It was more to do with saving storage capacity and that I had other bloggers submit photos for posts as well. I did not want to keep their photos. The posts were merely a photo and the comments comprised guesses on the location. Nothing that is of real value after the event. I think I have kept one, just for the record.

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    2. Of course the older posts will get read. Good writing always comes to the fore and yours is nothing if not excellent so once hooked, the reader looks back to older posts to read more. Unfortunately, there’s not always time to comment.

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    1. When you have a blog that is highly informative or academic, I totally get that you would be concentrating on verified material to present, Ang. I seem to have moved more towards the therapeutic and entertaining style of blog now, as that seems to initiate deeper conversations with other bloggers, which I enjoy immensely. The action of writing thoughts into words even if it is not anecdotal, appears to still be beneficial!

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    1. I do agree, Marion. Your posts are so well documented they read like a travel brochure, but like a very precise diary! Do you pre-write them, or write in the editor of WordPress and hit publish when they are done?

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      1. Hi Amanda, I make brief notes in a small hardback notebook I carry around with me in my bag and then use these and my photos to remind me of what I’ve been doing. I then make an outline plan on paper before using the WordPress editor. I’m certain you take time writing your posts too as they are very well structured and a joy to read. Marion

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  12. I don’t think I use my blog post as a journal, more so just sharing my thoughts. I used to keep my journals, but my ex didn’t like me talking about other exes in them (even though they were from high school) so he made me throw them away.

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    1. There is a differentiation between a journal and sharing thoughts, Oneday@atime! Isn’t there? It seems popular to use social media such as Facebook or Twitter for sharing thoughts and longer accounts are more blog-like? Fancy your ex making you throw your own journals away. He sounds like he was quite jealous of your past relationships?

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  13. Love Wayne Dyer quote.

    I don’t write journals.
    I feel it is upto the individual concerned.

    My feeling is that personal journal is both refreshing and depressing depending on various situations one undergoes or experiences.
    Secondly do you find time to read old personal journals?

    I think blog journal is almost our online. Journal.
    It keeps us refreshed as we try to get involved more and more.

    Online journal is nothing but our thought process in writing on a daily or weekly basis.

    Blogging is as good or even better than journalling.
    Definately has therapeutic value if we ignore the trolls.

    While Writing a blog post I lose my time sense. I am in a different world

    How about you ?

    Thank you Amanda for this thought provoking post.

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    1. I can become so involved in writing a blog post, a whole afternoon can easily slip by unnoticed! I have to become disciplined! The clear distinction between a journal and a blog is the commentary. A journal does not get read by too many others. It merely records. I don’t have time to read old diaries unless I am cleaning out my drawer or referencing an old travel experience. But it is a keepsake. It is a memento and contains a piece of my life. Should I throw them away or keep them for to read when I am too old to write and blog?

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      1. Well said about the commentary part in journal vs blog.

        Definitely the dairies can give us smile when we recollect those funny events!

        We can keep the diary as long as we are able to read.

        We can keep the blogs as long as we are able to write.

        In both situations power of our hands and vision must be in good condition.

        Both our diary and blogging post become irreverent to us when we have taken appointment with the Almighty.

        We are not sure whether the future generation will go through our diary or blog posts once we are not active in this world.

        Younger generation no more interested to see the photo album of their great grand parents!

        “Time has a different meaning for me, and these events that seem so monumental in the moment will one day be nothing more than a line in a scroll. These humans are but letters to be inked into history. A hundred years from now, I will be free. I will have forgotten their names and faces, and the struggles they have will not matter. Time has a way of burying things, shifting like the desert and swallowing entire civilizations, erasing them from map and memory. Always, in the end, everything returns to dust.” Jessica Khoury

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          1. Thank you Amanda.

            I like this particular part of the quote

            “These events that seem so monumental in the moment will one day be nothing more than a line in a scroll”.

            Yet we cling to our blogging or journal.

            Why/

            Because of the pleasure and joy it brings albeit who cares or remembers what happened in our lives.

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              1. Apologies…

                History can’t pinpoint the Reality.

                History is nothing but perception of the historians.

                History can be manipulated as per the whims and fancies of the historians and depends on their mind set.

                We can visualise the history in the form of ruins but not the truth as to what could have actually happened.

                The fun part is the invaders can be peace loving and those who got violated can be monsters😂😂

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              2. Absolutely, history can be manipulated by the writer. I am thinking more of the personal accounts of living through Covid times, as those living through other turbulent times have revealed hints about life in times past. Truth and fiction re history is often distorted by the victor or the vanquished.

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  14. I wrote daily in my journal after my first marriage broke down until the day I remarried. It provided me a place to slow down and calmly express my emotional state. I found it to be very therapeutic. It’s been 26 years now and I’ve never opened it up to read any of my gibberish. 🙂

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    1. Like some other readers, your journal was useful in delivering those thoughts and then, as many mediation experts recommend, after noting the thought we can let it go- disappearing from our thoughts. In this way, we do not hold on to the thought lest it prompt feelings of anxiety or worry. The process is more important than the product, I think Kevin. If you wrote daily in your journal, how often do you blog and how is it different?

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  15. I definitely think there is a difference between a private journal and public blog posts, but I’ve seen quite a few blogs that are deeply personal, some way too personal. I’m not sure what might inspire one to work though their deepest problems in a public forum, but I guess if it helps them it is a beneficial tool.

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    1. There seems to be some kind of trend to publicly confess one’s deepest sins, or those of a partner in a very public forum. Jerry Springer et al comes to mind. I am not sure if they feel that this exonerates the perpetrator or victim/s, or if they feel validated in their emotions. It is curious, for sure, Dorothy.
      I try to keep a level of anonymity and balance public and private information, written here. I realise as time goes on, I divulge more information, and if I was younger I would certainly be more cautious about what information I posted on my blog.
      I have also read blogs wherein the blogger is working through some very disturbing trauma and I am guessing that by sharing those highly intimate feelings they may help someone else struggling with something similar It must be very difficult for them, but possibly therapeutic as well and I can understand why they might want to guard their privacy well.

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      1. I think you are most likely correct on on these points. We’re all still maneuvering the explosion of social media in ways we never would have dreamed of even 20 years ago. Some of it, really helpful, but much of it toxic and dangerous. Who knows where it is going!

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    2. I agree about the too personal posts. Like you, I wonder why people want to work through their personal problems in a public forum and, in fact, I usually stop reading these posts as i find it embarrassing.

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  16. I began journaling at the age of 19 in the summer of 1983; jotting my various thoughts down into spiral notebooks. (I still have all of them, too!) In June of 2013 I suffered a major accident at home that damaged my right hand and made it difficult to write. Thus, I switched to journaling in MS Word. My blog was a little more than a year old at the time, and I naturally wrote about the fiasco.

    I’ve always found journaling to be therapeutic. I realized years ago that writing about my life – even the most mundane and ordinary of incidents – made me feel better. Every time I’d get upset about something I turned to my journal and felt an immense sense of relief afterwards; as if I’d just received an intense deep tissue massage.

    My blog is an extension of my journals. I’m a bit more judicious in what I reveal in such a public forum, though. Yet, it helps me cope with the myriad stresses around me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. There you go, Alejandro. You reinforce the exact reason why many of us write! It is just the difference in making a post public that differentiates the benefits. I think all bloggers are wise to be careful what they write publicly as identity theft is real and I am thinking how much info some nefarious interest could compile on me if they really wanted to. I don’t think I am that significant as to have that happen, but stranger things have happened.
      in making a public post, we are inviting or at least opening up to comments. Although I have seen posts where frustratingly, comments are closed. I don’t always get why. For comments can be so educational and assist in increasing our cultural understanding; our appreciation of other’s perspectives and respect for another’s points of view. In that, blogs can be amazingly holistic. Compare this to the divisiveness of other social media platforms and there is a big difference, would you agree?

      Liked by 2 people

  17. I think some blogs are journals but most aren’t. I’ve only kept journals while traveling and enjoy going back to them now and then to refresh my memory or for information to pass on to other travelers. I wish I had kept a journal while I was dealing with an illness and then with my aging parents.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am interested to know that you find most blogs are NOT journals, Janis. I love that you enjoy disseminating info to other travellers. Travel posts are little gems! I used bloggers suggestions of good places to visit when travelling to other countries. That local knowledge is fantastic and even better when you get to meet the person in real life. That is something that blogs can offer that journals can’t – conversation with others that may lead to friendship in real life such as the other bloggers in your region?

      Like

  18. @M-R: I know you liked the quote but when you wrote “quantitative adverb,” thingy that confused me as to what you were referring to – sigh
    Once again you called me an idiot. This is getting to be a habit, M-R. One day I may take offence! Hope you got a laugh anyway. lol

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    1. And therein lies the biggest difference between blogs and journals. The conversations and discussion – the interaction is only with blogs. Blogs can be journals, but it seems journals can’t be blogs!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I just wrote as much to Laurie! It is the biggest difference, Donna and the best difference too. Blogging conversations can lead to wonderful online or irl friendships! A wonderful aspect!

      Like

  19. I keep a travel diary but those are just notes eg.what sights did I visit and I have a daily journal where I note down my obligations.Blog is in a way my diary too but I used to write my thoughts and feelings in a proper diary when I was a kid

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Tanja, if you are somebody that is likely to be someone interested in writing as an adult, you would more than likely have a diary as a child, I think. Not all of us are drawn to words, it has to be there from fairly early on, but may take different forms. Are any of your children old enough to be interested in writing or poetry perhaps?

      Like

        1. My child that likes poetry and writing started out very young. Dictating stories to me who would write them down. I think it was before his second birthday.

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  20. For some people blogging is an online journal. If you’re inclined to want to share all the details of your life, your blog becomes a diary. I’m too reserved for that.

    I think of my blog as a lifestyle column like the ones that used to be [maybe still are] in newspapers. I’m sharing a slice of life, human interest stories, you know? Blogs are whatever you make ’em– and hence the reason why they’re infinitely interesting.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. There are many readers of your blog, Ally so the way you write has widespread appeal! I am reluctant to give too many details of my personal life away, unless it is an anecdote. I note that some bloggers do not hold back on anything in their blogs and I would not feel comfortable with that either.

      Liked by 2 people

  21. Amanda, I aim for a blog post once per month, though sometimes I skip a month. My blog is one of my self-taught retirement projects. Creative writing is far from what I did during my working years, as is photography. Being the skilled writer you are Amanda, I’m sure you’ve picked up this. 🙂
    “Learning is the essence of life”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Once a month is fine! There are no rules about posts. That is the beauty of blogging. You write when you feel most inclined to do so. I don’t much like a strict routine, although the Friendly Friday challenge is an exception. Writing to a routine generally kills creativity!
      I would never describe myself as a skilled writer. I like words but am mostly self-taught too in photography and writing! There are many resources on-line which I am only now starting to find. I think I could improve much more yet. If you write from the heart, your passion shows through in your writing and it is never a chore.
      I so appreciate your kind comment. Thanks so much, Kevin.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I write in my journal EVERY day. Even if it’s just a quick “this is what I felt, did, want to achieve today.” Typically its verbal vomit which is what I really need! My Blog is really just another outlet.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yes, Alison, that’s exactly the purpose of a journal. It’s not just for the biggest moments of our lives, but even the mundane or ordinary. I’ve told people in the past that one can truly be themselves when writing in their journals. They don’t have to be prim, proper or politically correct. We can scream and yell just as much as we can express love and adoration. It’s one vessel where we can be true to our nature.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I can hear the passion for writing in your comment, Elizabeth. I do agree it is therapeutic and yet we don’t have to divulge heaps of personal details in writing blog posts for them to be cathartic.
      I agree the distinction between a journal and a blog is that the blog post is written with the hopeful intent that others might find it interesting or useful, and the journal is a private matter for our ears and eyes only. Have you been blogging for long?

      Like

      1. Hi, I’ve been blogging, learning WordPress, setting up my website, learning about marketing- under a year and a half. I enjoy writing to entertain but also want it to be useful- I’m pulled in two quite different directions. But for me, freedom to be creative is the key to my motivation.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That is the gift of WordPress. The freedom to be as creative as you like. Some folks make money through their blogs, but mostly it’s only a little; there seems to be only a few that make a lot. Whatever the motivation it is a person has to begin, (and to continue), blogging, will also be the underlying current that filters through the writing to the reader.

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  23. Interesting questions. For me, blogging is different to journaling and I have set out my blog so that it is. Although blogging is all encompassing and can be like journaling too. Journaling is more personal for me where I can whinge and be confused on paper. I’ve started morning pages- an idea from the Artist’s Way book- which I do every morning just to get thoughts out of my head. These are so therapeutic (haha!) and a nice and peaceful way to start the day. I would say blogging for me is therapeutic in a different way and more about the art of writing?

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I have started so many journals – not my thing. But I bought an instant camera before moving to New Zealand. Every month we pick 4 images, print them and each family member writes something about that picture. That will be an amazing memory to take back home, one day, when we move back to Europe from NZ. And the kids love it – they really put effort in it and reflect the memories they have from that particular image.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Hi Amanda – thanks for sharing that passage form the yoga teacher – especially liked this part- “turns out that putting stuff into words changes the way it is organised in our minds.”
    And also I know what you mean about “who reads old posts” but I did think some of them get read as they are indexed and might come up when someone searches – so they might get some reads – but not like a freshly posted entry!

    Liked by 2 people

  26. I realise that this is a little off-topic, but:

    […] Yet they are transient and have a short shelf life, (who reads old blog posts) […]

    Well, since you ask, I do. In fact, I’m here after visiting one of your earlier posts via ?Random Raiders!… and, wait, what’s that, do my eyes deceive me or is ‘Forestwood’ listed there as a member, too? 😉

    Not all posts are transient. Some, as I’ve found, can have lasting appeal.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. A blog is more of a diary but in this case an online diary because you share your thoughts online via links so that interested readers can click on it in Google and read the content📱

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Hi, I am new to your blog and find it very interesting. I have found an easy way to journal, I am using an app called My diary. But, as you had said, writing using a pen feels different than using an online writer, it entrenches our thoughts into words far deeply into our memory. For me, writing a journal is more personal than writing a blog, it is there for myself and nobody else to read and savour the memories again and again. Blog posts are there to share stuff with the world. I recently started writing a blog to improve my writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for stopping by and welcome to blogging. I agree that writing in a diary is deeper and more introspective than a public blog post.
      Reading blogs and writing posts is good practice for honing writing skills.

      Like

  29. I do not write journal and blogging is truly my first writing experience which I started exactly a year ago. It was not easy at first, especially finding the right balance between being authentic in sharing my life journey and yet not getting too personal about it. Learning to write from the heart, capturing and sharing experiences and always with Readers’ perspective in mind. It brings me joy and especially grateful whenever a reader is inspired enough to leave valuable comments to share with other readers 🌻😊.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Writing for me can be beautiful… but always painful too. So I guess that falls into therapeutic haha. I have always struggled to maintain journals because putting my inner self under a microscope brings up too much truth!!! The journey continues 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks for the comment, thegirlthedreamthelife,
      Writing is both beautiful, therapeutic and takes a form that is whatever you want it to be! That is its appeal. If you feel that journaling is too painful for you because it raises darker thoughts, what theme do you concentrate on in writing a blog post? Travel/photography experiences?

      Like

  31. Good question! I think you could use it that way if you wanted an outlet, but I think that blogs that have a specific purpose might do better when it comes to gaining followers and reaching people.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good answer, Sarah. Blogs with a specific purpose. Yes, this might relate to academic and informational blogs. But are they better at gaining followers and more importantly to me, engaging in comments and discussion? Not always. I see blogs with more comments that are chatty, lifestyle blogs, that appear to reach more people. I am not sure why other than people feel a connection with ( and are inclined to comment more) with someone writing personal experiences ( not necessary personal details), as opposed to impersonal information even if it is new, intriguing information.
      On the other hand, I do agree with you that blogs are an outlet. They can be cathartic, healing and fun! Have you been blogging for a while?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Not really! I started my blog up in August and it’s just been something I enjoy more than anything. I’m still learning how to engage with my readers more and what topics people seem to enjoy reading the most. You make a good point about being personal though. I try to make my posts sound as casual and relatable as I can. I try to write in a way that makes sense but also in a way that sounds how I would actually converse with someone

        Liked by 2 people

        1. You hit the nail on the head. Engaging with your readers through a post or a comment is like a conversation. I tend to write in this style more than straight information, which can be dry. It has worked for me. And it is much more fun that way.

          Like

          1. I definitely noticed that when I did a discussion post based on something I read in one of my nonfiction reads, I definitely got a bit more engagement out of it. Just a comment or two, but it also made me start reading a but more analytically so I can come up with questions or interesting topics and invite people to converse about!

            Liked by 1 person

  32. Loved your post, coincidentally I wrote on the same thing a few months ago Blog Posts can never be a handwritten journal. There is feeling of warmth, affection, connection in those handwritten words which is a lot more than in typed peices of art. Even I don’t do journal everyday yet I love it more than my blog page as it feels more like a close bestfriend. 🤍

    Liked by 2 people

    1. So glad to hear that you find journaling gives you so much and you can confide totally in the page. There are authors who dislike typed words, preferring to hand write their manuscripts as they have a different feel. I am happy typing as my handwriting is not neat at all! Thanks for a lovely comment and I will check out your blog.

      Like

  33. I’ve been wanting to get to this post because it speaks to me. There is so much research about how much difference there is in brain activity in hand written work and typing. You engage more of the brain when you write by hand and free form writing is the best way to work out any difficulty. When I blog about things in my life, I choose words very carefully. When I journal, I write quickly with feeling from the base of my feelings that day. I write morning pages when I first wake and a night time journal page as well as my one line gratitude journal. Each with a different purpose than my blog. The nightly journal is my download of any difficulty that day or thoughts I want to unload. Makes sleep sweeter. I’m on my third year of morning pages where I plan my day or expectations of myself for that day. Getting clear before getting up helps my focus. A lot of time I’ll ask a question when writing by hand and have an answer by the time I’m done. If you want something very much, write it down by hand, often. If you want to change your personality, change your handwriting. I did that to give me more backbone. Because both of my children are dysgraphic, I had to study handwriting and the brain so many years ago. Great post and good food for thought.
    https://www.additudemag.com/what-is-dysgraphia-understanding-common-symptoms/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If you want something very much, write it down by hand, often. If you want to change your personality, change your handwriting.
      This is fascinating Marlene! I will take a look at that link. Imagine unlocking the secrets of the connections between handwriting and the brain. Amazing but it makes sense. I still have yet to start morning pages but I think I will do that this week! I have a few diaries sitting around that I could use. Then a lovely reflection on the day at night.
      I do have bullet journals but don’t keep them up to date constantly. I did when I was working, but perhaps I would feel more productive if I continued that tradition now I am retired.
      I really appreciate your comment and your experiences. Again I think it is fascinating.

      Like

  34. I have a personal journal called “Triumphs & Tribulations”. I started it at Age 15 in October 2000 and I’m now on Volume 21. It’s where I write my innermost thoughts. All of my life experiences since the first entry is there. It’s strictly for my eyes only with the exception of the 1st entry I talked about my blog (https://thebookofjuan.com/2014/10/03/flashback-friday-moment-of-the-week-40/). My thoughts in my journal are explicit and unfiltered. Sometimes they are very aggressive, sometimes very graphic in describing scenes and experiences.

    With my blog, I could agree that it’s somewhat of an online journal. I’m a largely private person and the thoughts and experiences I share at The Book of Juan are things that I feel may be good for public consumption.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. “It turns out that putting stuff into words changes the way it is organised in our minds” SUCH true words. I definitely agree.

    I remember mentioning to someone years ago that I write. “I hope you don’t mean ‘blog.'” A grimace adorned their face. “Pfff, no, of course not.” And I meant it back then. I thought blogs were things angsty teenagers did and self-centered people who only talked about what they have for breakfast. Obviously, I’ve started blogging at some point after that and changed my opinion on the topic. Yes, there are different kinds of blogs. I appreciate some of them more than others.

    I’ve tried journaling (diary-ing?) a few times, but it never really stuck. Either I would forget, or have nothing to write about. Blogging is different. It allows me to record my thoughts in a somewhat elevated way (am I just too full of myself?). Plus, it’s obviously easier to keep (rather than volumes and volumes of notebooks).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think notebooks/journals and blog each have their place. Trouble is my handwriting makes my diaries illegible to everyone else. You are right about antsy teens though. That is when I started writing a diary. It was an outlet of emotion, a safe one. There has always been that interest in writing though. I have never really been in to fiction. For me, it has to be non-fiction or somewhere in between. Maybe I should call it Fiction with a twist or Twisted Fiction?
      I agree that blogging thoughts allows for a deeper level of analysis, so no, you are not full of yourself. You are just a thinking style of person, much like me and many bloggers.

      Liked by 1 person

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