Why reveal yourself to the world?
A couple of my friends have wondered why I blog, and why I write about my thoughts (and feelings) for the world to see. I am not sure if I have given a complete and satisfactory answer to them. I know that I have given them an honest answer/explanation. Most of the things I share, are inconsequential to me (and them). People will know something about me, my thoughts and reflections, and then what? I understand the fear of sharing your life with “strangers”, but I am not sure there is anything a stranger can do with the info I provide. So I have no fears or misgivings about my thoughts/life being out there, even though I am a private (and introverted) individual. The thing that made me start blogging is that I have all these ideas that come into my mind that I never really share with anyone. Some could be helpful, some are just interesting that they even crossed my mind, some is just knowledge that I may come back to later, and some of it is just a way for me to let out the pressure, emotions, feelings, ideas, etc. I could have made it all private, where nobody could see it, but that would mean things that can help somebody would be hoarded. I am not sure I want to keep information that is useful for the general populace to myself. A way to overcome that would be to have several blogs… private and public. Kinda a pain. But that’s what I am doing… I have a private journal/diary… online! and I have a public blog. I share some of my thoughts and feelings at this blog. But not nearly enough. There are things that I cannot write here at all. What are my fears, desires, deepest thoughts, memories, food for thought, reactions, etc. Those are things that I have determined, I cannot share with the public because they are so so so… private and personal to me. I have also determined they would do nobody good if they saw it. May be people could take advantage of me then. May be some would be mad that I thought this of them. etc. So what people see here is not all that I am. I am not sure it is possible to figure out a person even if you read their most private diaries or journals. You will have a very good idea, and then what?
Why go online?
I have been transforming to having most of my stuff online for a while. Leo, at zenhabits.net made me realize that this was the right thing to do. He had his own reasons for doing what he does. He didn’t mention journaling. He, however, mentioned things like saving his photos and (other) files online. Of course, you can make these public or private too. You just need to spend some time thinking things over and learning about the system and yourself to see what’s best for you. Anyway, why go online? Well, several reasons. It is portable, as long as you have Internet connection. Thus you don’t have to carry a ton of things around and worry about losing any of it etc. I think it is secure. You don’t have to worry about somebody finding your stuff if you don’t want them to. Well, for the most part! Hackers or system failures or whatever can end up making your info open to the public or you can even lose it all. But I would rather have a stranger read my info and not know what to do with it, that somebody whom I have considered a friend or best friend, do the same and use it against me or get hurt or ask me a million questions or misinterpret what I wrote 10 years ago. I don’t have to worry about where I kept my diary/journal at all or who has access to it. If somebody figures out my username and password, props to them!
Why keep a journal at all?
You can look it up online to see why it is important to keep a journal. For me, there are several reasons. First, I forget important things all the time. Sometimes people get hurt when I don’t remember stuff. Sometimes I just appear dumb. etc. Keeping a journal and reviewing it every so often, enables me to help my brain remember things that are important or interesting, that I would otherwise not remember. Second, it helps me keep track of my goals, thoughts, visions, etc. David Allen said it best in Getting Things Done: “There is no reason for you to have the same thought twice, unless you really like that thought”… (or something like that). I want to record things and free my mind for the next thought, idea, vision, emotion, etc. Third, I think that when I write, I feel better… I know myself better… I understand my life better… I guess because I have to explain things – for example, why I feel a certain way, instead of just accepting the final product/emotion/thought/decision. There are more reasons, but that’s all I can think of right now. Oh, well, one more reason…. What proof is there that I existed at one time? If I look back to my great grandpa… the only proof of his existence is my grandparents and my parents and me.. I guess. There is no other record for me to see them. No pictures, no journals, no stories that anyone can repeat to me or let me read/see; nothing to tell me that he even envisioned my presence some day… well, I don’t mean to set a high standard or judge them harshly. May be it is not even important! But I would like to leave some traces behind. My thoughts as to how I would want to raise my kids and why. Why I would like my kids and grandkids to have a better life than I did/do, and what I am doing about it. May be in the future, somebody will discover how xgq3445(&&(>> (I don’t know what they will call us at that time!) thought. I don’t know. I think, therefore I am. I write, I am.
I may change my mind about all this some day!