The Joy of Journaling: Daniel Hess
One of the benefits of keeping a journal is looking back on what you’ve written: every week, at the end of the year, or even years later. It is encouraging to reflect on previous entries and observe how much we have grown, or the key themes that keep popping up in our lives. Daniel Hess believes that journaling is like a “time capsule” – a term I absolutely love. Daniel shares some of his other journaling insights below:
1. Why do you keep a journal? What do you think are the main advantages of journaling?
I keep a journal as it is for me a place to reflect on each day and it is also a great time capsule to look back on. Some days it is just nice to see what happened on certain days of the week months later. I love the way it captures those snapshots. A journal is your own private space to talk about anything you want to and I think that is the main advantage of it overall.
2. How long have you kept a journal for and why did you start?
I’ve kept journals on and off since I was a kid. They help in the darkest times and biggest life changes for me. When I lost my best friend to cystic fibrosis when I was 10, it was there for me. That was the main fodder for starting my journaling experience as well. When my relationship of 7 years fell apart after a tumultuous last few years of cheating and fighting, it was there. Now the obstacles may not be as big as they used to be, but it is wonderful having it to just write in.
3. How often do you write in your journal – have you established a regular habit, or do you just write when you need to? How much do you write?
I’ve been on both sides of this one. I know that I have had times where I don’t journal and times where I needed it every day. Now at age 31 I find that I try to write a little bit each night before I go to bed. It is a healthy little cap to end the day on and I find it very soothing to do before I go to bed.
4. What sort of journal do you write in? Do you write by hand in a notebook or electronically on your computer or other device?
I am an old school soul so I prefer to journal in a notebook by far. It is just so nice having that sensory satisfaction of picking up a pen and putting words to a page. Nothing will ever beat that in my mind.
5. Do you have any challenges journaling, e.g. not writing as consistently as you’d like, not having time to write, not knowing what to write, finding the right journal, etc
For me the only challenge becomes the time to do it. I’ll write just on a loose piece of paper if I have to but holding myself to that consistency is where things count, but that pre-bed routine really works wonders as far as doing things regularly.
Daniel Hess is a writer/filmmaker from Baltimore, Maryland. Daniel is the founder of To Tony Productions has been producing and creating content since 2009. What started as a small dream of making fun film projects on a college campus has turned into a place of endless creative drive. Learn more at www.totonyproductions.com.