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View Poll Results: Do you keep a diary?
Yes, digitally. 4 14.81%
Yes, on paper. 6 22.22%
Used to, digitally. 1 3.70%
Used to, on paper. 5 18.52%
Never have. 11 40.74%
Voters: 27. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2012-03-20, 08:31   Link #1
DarkyPwnz
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Do you keep a diary?

I'll be writing my first entry after this post.

After having witnessed how ineffective I was with my left hand,I decided to use it more and eventually be ambidextrous. For that,I thought it would be a good start to practice writing with it,because there is a more than noticable difference when I am writing with my left hand than I am with my right hand.

So,I've decided to keep a diary,totally not because I am expecting it to start telling me the future at some point,and track my progress over time to see how it goes.

So the question is,do you keep a diary? If so,why?

-Darky
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Old 2012-03-20, 10:17   Link #2
TinyRedLeaf
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Err... so what does ambidexterity have to do with keeping a diary?
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkyPwnz View Post
So the question is,do you keep a diary? If so,why?
Yes I do, because I once harboured delusions of grandeur, thinking that my "memoirs" would be valuable once I became rich and famous.

Well, you know, we are all young and foolish at some point of our lives.

What's mortifying is that, when I look back at my entries over several years, I notice how certain themes never changed. What's gratifying is that I can also visibly see how my writing has improved over the years.

Mind you, I don't actually keep a book "diary" (though I do have a couple of actual diaries saved from way back in the late 80s, early 90s, when my entries were sporadic and squeamishly childish). Rather, I jot down my thoughts in text files which I save on my local drive. I had attempted to start a private blog, but it didn't last long. It just didn't "feel" the same. Guess I'm a luddite that way. I really should migrate to a blogging platform, because it offers far more efficient ways to index, sort and backup the entries.
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Old 2012-03-20, 10:20   Link #3
Paranoid Android
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No, my last diary entry was when I was 6.

I do keep a text file that I write all sorts of random daily things into. But each time I write, I add/remove things from it. So most of the past written things are deleted.
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Old 2012-03-20, 10:38   Link #4
DarkyPwnz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Err... so what does ambidexterity have to do with keeping a diary?


Yes I do, because I once harboured delusions of grandeur, thinking that my "memoirs" would be valuable once I became rich and famous.

Well, you know, we are all young and foolish at some point of our lives.

What's mortifying is that, when I look back at my entries over several years, I notice how certain themes never changed. What's gratifying is that I can also visibly see how my writing has improved over the years.

Mind you, I don't actually keep a book "diary" (though I do have a couple of actual diaries saved from way back in the late 80s, early 90s, when my entries were sporadic and squeamishly childish). Rather, I jot down my thoughts in text files which I save on my local drive. I had attempted to start a private blog, but it didn't last long. It just didn't "feel" the same. Guess I'm a luddite that way. I really should migrate to a blogging platform, because it offers far more efficient ways to index, sort and backup the entries.
Because it is a relatively less boring way to practice writing with your left.
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Old 2012-03-20, 10:46   Link #5
Endless Soul
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Not a diary, but I do have a small journal where I write down random memories. I'm attempting to write everything I remember down now before the time comes when I won't be able to write anything anymore. I have the nagging feeling that that time isn't too far away.

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Old 2012-03-20, 11:36   Link #6
Paranoid Android
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Endless Soul View Post
Not a diary, but I do have a small journal where I write down random memories. I'm attempting to write everything I remember down now before the time comes when I won't be able to write anything anymore. I have the nagging feeling that that time isn't too far away.

Endless "Scrbbling" Soul
Oh pleaaase, as long as you keep an active mind and don't shun things because they aren't simple, you got decades :P. My boss who's 76 still remembers everything by head. My mother who's only 50 and refuses to learn how to operate a computer on the other hand, oh i worry for her.
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Old 2012-03-20, 16:02   Link #7
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I tried once to keep a sort of learning log and planner, but didn't really refer to it that much in the end...that's not really a diary is it?

One of my brothers religiously keeps a diary of all his introspective thoughts and goals. He's a very goal-orientated person. To me it seemed like he was spending more time writing his diary than anything else, but in fact he was the type to go out and do whatever he wrote down. Some of the stuff was quite silly, like "initiate a conversation with a girl in the mall", and he'd go out and do it.
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Old 2012-03-20, 16:04   Link #8
Kyuu
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I used to frequent my own LiveJournal. I used to write stuff on paper. However, that practice has all but disappeared now.
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Old 2012-03-20, 16:28   Link #9
ranran
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I used to have a diary, with a lock too, and used to write in it diligently. But then wordpress came around and I stopped writing anything on that diary :/
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Old 2012-03-20, 17:18   Link #10
LeoXiao
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I used to have a diary from 7th to 9th grade, and then read it over in its entirety and promptly destroyed it.

When I went to Germany to study abroad I tried to keep one as well, but it only had a couple entries before I gave up. I found it much better to keep a diary of my travels to other cities for a couple weeks or so at a time. So I ended up with a nice report of Cologne, Aachen, Munich, Landshut, Nuremberg, Leipzig, and Berlin, which I have yet to reread.
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Old 2012-03-20, 17:25   Link #11
warita
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I tried keeping a diary in my early teens... well around 10-12 to be precise.... and somehow I could never bring myself to make daily entries. Besides, I sucked at it too.

I get the feeling if I tried it now, it would be a rant fest knowing myself, hahaha


Does writing a blog count as keeping a diary? Must a diary be secret or can it be public like a blog?
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Old 2012-03-20, 19:54   Link #12
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkyPwnz View Post
So the question is,do you keep a diary? If so,why
I do. Originally it was an online journal, and contained general thoughts and ponderings. I just wanted to get my take on things out there, and to get people to consider various things. This was all before blogging was "cool." As someone who was shy and terrified of public speaking, it was a way to get my voice out into the world and to affect others. In hindsight, it reached a surprising number of people. I don't know whether it made a difference, but it felt good to do.

Gradually, I started to write more private, personal entries. While some entries were about recording significant events (including photos and videos), and some were still about general musings and thoughts, most were about personal strife. Frustrations with myself, frustrations with the things I experienced in my life. I can tell when periods of discontent occurred, because the frequency of journal entries increases around those times.

I continue to write in the journal for a few reasons. The major one is that it's therapeutic. If you're writing about life events, it forces you to process events a bit more slowly (even if your journal is digital and you're a fast typist, as is my case), and gives you more of an opportunity for self-introspection than if you just thought randomly. The second is that it's interesting. My earliest journal entries are now almost a decade old. It is fascinating to see how much I have changed since then. At the same time, as TinyRedLeaf mentioned, I notice that there are certain themes that have not changed. In a way, that's a depressing realization - to note that I grappled with a certain issue every two years or so, and it just keeps coming back.

The frequency of writing is variable. When I'm unhappy, I can write multiple entries in one day. When I'm happy and doing well, I might write one entry in a month - if that. Looking back on it, it is a lot of work. I average about one hour per journal entry (I write too much). I'll also admit that I write more often than I read from it. But it is fun to go through some of those older entries... and somewhat insightful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paranoid Android View Post
Oh pleaaase, as long as you keep an active mind and don't shun things because they aren't simple, you got decades :P.
ES has a medical condition that makes what he's saying a possible reality. Hang in there, Endless - remember that a positive attitude does help with these conditions!
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Old 2012-03-20, 23:37   Link #13
Shin'i
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I don't and I think people blog nowadays instead of diaries
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Old 2012-03-21, 05:09   Link #14
NoemiChan
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I tried to make one but... well I don't know... probably I'm just that lazy or there are things that is better to be left untold... and remember.
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Old 2012-03-21, 05:59   Link #15
warita
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
I do. Originally it was an online journal, and contained general thoughts and ponderings. I just wanted to get my take on things out there, and to get people to consider various things.
Ah I see you consider blogging a diary/journal just like me.

Maybe I should start writing a journal too for therapeutical reasons. There are times when things dont go so well in life and then I tend to rant. But I dont want to bother other people with it, so in the end I just bottle it up. Maybe keeping a journal would allow me to get it out without molesting anybody and the process of writing down my musings would help me to sort out my thoughts on the subject as well. Sometimes that helps a lot too. Just to know where you stand on a certain issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkyPwnz View Post
I'll be writing my first entry after this post.

After having witnessed how ineffective I was with my left hand,I decided to use it more and eventually be ambidextrous.
Are you sure you want to do that? It sounds like a nice party trick, but this actually puts stress on the brain, you know? Children, who are born left handed and then forced to use their right hand end up with all kinds of problems. It may lead to stuttering, dislexia or the children can develop all kinds of insecurities and even phobias.

You are an adult already, so I dont think you will suffer from this as much as a child would. But still, in my opinion it is not a good idea to mess with your brain in such a manner. There is a good reason why the hemespheres specialised and certain tasks are separated. If you force one hemisphere to perform tasks it isnt meant to do, it could have unpleasant side effects.

Ledgem, you are a doctor, what do you think about this?

Last edited by Daniel E.; 2012-03-21 at 19:49.
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Old 2012-03-21, 06:13   Link #16
fanty
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I kept several diaries over the years. The ones I kept when I was a little girl were so idiotic and pretentious that I ended up burning one of them, and I still intend to burn the other ones, too.

On the very first day of 2011, I started keeping a diary which I deliberately set out to be as non-pretentious as humanly possible. I have filled up two notebooks at this point, and am filling up the third one. Every entry is 3-5 lines long, mostly recounting every important thing I did that day and everything I ate. Since I was paranoid about somebody reading that diary and discovering just how ridiculously unproductive I am, I'm writing it in a script I invented myself. It looks like this:
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Old 2012-03-21, 06:58   Link #17
Paranoid Android
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Great, I sprain my neck for nothing as I can't understand a single word
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Old 2012-03-21, 08:36   Link #18
DarkyPwnz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warita View Post
Are you sure you want to do that? It sounds like a nice party trick, but this actually puts stress on the brain, you know? Children, who are born left handed and then forced to use their right hand end up with all kinds of problems. It may lead to stuttering, dislexia or the children can develop all kinds of insecurities and even phobias.

You are an adult already, so I dont think you will suffer from this as much as a child would. But still, in my opinion it is not a good idea to mess with your brain in such a manner. There is a good reason why the hemespheres specialised and certain tasks are separated. If you force one hemisphere to perform tasks it isnt meant to do, it could have unpleasant side effects.

Ledgem, you are a doctor, what do you think about this?
Interesting point,but am I not making my right hemisphere work more (by trying to write with my left hand) which is actually a good thing?

I'm only doing this like ten minutes a day,I am in no hurry,it is just for the sake of being not-as-bad at writing with my left hand. It will probably only be handy (pun intended) if I lose my right hand somehow through.
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Old 2012-03-21, 12:31   Link #19
Ledgem
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Originally Posted by warita View Post
Maybe I should start writing a journal too for therapeutical reasons. There are times when things dont go so well in life and then I tend to rant. But I dont want to bother other people with it, so in the end I just bottle it up. Maybe keeping a journal would allow me to get it out without molesting anybody and the process of writing down my musings would help me to sort out my thoughts on the subject as well. Sometimes that helps a lot too. Just to know where you stand on a certain issue.
I think the major benefit of keeping a personal, private journal is that you don't need to filter yourself. When I kept an online journal I occasionally did reveal some rather personal things, but in the back of my mind I was always aware that what I was writing was available to the world. As a result, I would omit certain details, or avoid discussing certain topics entirely. The online journal was less self-focused and more focused on events and ideas. Taking the journal offline resulted in a reversal, with more entries being self-focused than about ideas or events.

The benefit of having an online journal where you write about personal things is that other people can comment on them. For example, I've heard that one mode of therapy for people suffering from certain conditions, such as cancer or eating disorders, is to keep an online journal and pair up with a community of others suffering from a similar disease. This allows those people to express themselves, and to receive thoughts and support from others. Additionally, maintaining a journal is a lot of work for some people. Making it a social activity can be a source of motivation to use the journal regularly.

There are plenty of drawbacks to an online journal. As I said before, you may find that you're censoring yourself or avoiding certain topics. While people following your journal may be supportive, you're also opening yourself to cruel people who would derive amusement from mocking or making fun of you. It's also possible that someone you know could find your journal, and that it could alter your relationship with that person. Lastly, with an online journal, you are writing to an audience. With an offline journal, you are writing to yourself. The way that you process and present information is different in both cases. It will vary from person to person, but in my experience, writing online almost required comments from other people to complete my thoughts and introspection. When I am just writing to myself, I know that all thoughts must come from within, and I think things through more thoroughly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by warita View Post
Are you sure you want to do that? It sounds like a nice party trick, but this actually puts stress on the brain, you know? Children, who are born left handed and then forced to use their right hand end up with all kinds of problems. It may lead to stuttering, dislexia or the children can develop all kinds of insecurities and even phobias.

You are an adult already, so I dont think you will suffer from this as much as a child would. But still, in my opinion it is not a good idea to mess with your brain in such a manner. There is a good reason why the hemespheres specialised and certain tasks are separated. If you force one hemisphere to perform tasks it isnt meant to do, it could have unpleasant side effects.

Ledgem, you are a doctor, what do you think about this?
Just a correction - I'm still a medical student, not yet a doctor

I've never heard of the problem that you mentioned, though. Actually, around the time of my parents' generation it was common for left-handed children to be forced to write with their right hands. As far as I know, there were no widespread problems resulting from the practice. There was some study performed that found that left-handed individuals were more likely to suffer from various things and die early compared with right-handed individuals, but that was a long time ago and I'm a bit skeptical of it. I don't believe it was related to forcing people to be ambidextrous, but perhaps that's what you were thinking of?
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Old 2012-03-21, 13:05   Link #20
Paranoid Android
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I always thought being ambidextrous improves your mental state and boosts your abilities that are restricted to the lesser preferred half of the brain. Everyone in my family were forced to be so when we were young. I was forced to use my left hand when I was born right handed. My dad and brother are born left handed and forced to use their right hand.

Particularly playing the piano and painting with both my hands.
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