I started journaling in 2013 and since then it’s been very inconsistent. I have started to write more often and found solace in the reflection and introspection. Journaling can take on many different forms, but I’d recommend you find some method that you’re comfortable with. I tried handwritten journals, but they were never my thing. I had considered Evernote, or Google Drive, but they didn’t really capture what I wanted in a digital journal. It wasn’t until I found Day One that I really started trying to capture things.
The cool thing about Day One is it syncs on all of my devices. It’s entirely personal, and has a ton of options. It’s very focused on journaling/lifelogging. It has a few features that are incredibly important to me.
Every journal entry automatically geotags where the post was created. Additionally if you want to start an entry based on a photo it will automatically change the date and time of the entry to the time of the photo was taken and use the location where the photo was taken. Location has always been important to my memories so these features are great. You can view all of your journal entries on a map.
The paid service of Day One offers end to end encryption. This means my memories are safe.
Photos, Prompts, Audio, Drawings
Entries don’t have to be written text. Sometimes a photo will do. You don’t have to share every photo with the world, and sometimes a journal is a good place to put the most important ones. You can also attach audio recordings, or video. There’s even a built in sketchpad for tablets and the sort.
As an optional feature you can have Day One track everywhere you’ve been and the duration of when you were there. If you are concerned about privacy this data is only stored on your local device. But by capturing this data, you can create a prompt based on any particular location if you forgot where you were.
Metadata Metadata Metadata
In addition to geotagging posts, Day One captures all sorts of other metadata. It will automatically capture the weather conditions through Dark Sky1 based on the entry date and time. It will capture how many steps you walked for the day. You can capture what you were doing at the time (sitting, walking, flying, etc). It will also capture if you were listening to a song when you were writing an entry2.
Overall it’s been really helpful for me to have perspective. I’ve written about some really shitty times, and I’ve written about some times that have been really good. I recently had a really good night with friends to the point where it was just very serendipitous how splendid it was. My first instinct was I need to go write about this in my journal. I’ve never been that way before. I think if journaling is something you are considering you need to find something you’re comfortable with. I’ve always been oriented towards the digital, but a handwritten journal will get the job done. Or a bunch of txt files on a hard drive.
I recommend it if you’ve ever thought about it. We’re living through history right now. Covid-19 is something that’s impacting the world and touching everyone of us. One of the hardest things I had to get past was documenting the bad times where I disagreed with someone, or my feelings were hurt, or where I made a mistake. But then I remembered no one was ever going to read it. In the immortal words of Garth Algar, “I gotta be comfortable with me first.”