2011/365/069: Daybook Reflections

image: Josephine Wall

We’ve had a horrible Internet connection here all night, probably due to the storms that have been pushing through since yesterday. So, I’m actually typing this entry out in Word and then will copy/paste when I wrap things up. Hope it works…

The graphic that I’ve chosen for tonight’s post is so beautiful, yet complex. It reminds me of the days when I used to live on the western shores of the Chesapeake, and I would have endless hours under the moon or before the rising sun along the shores to just reflect on life and love, in and around me. The only thing that’s really changed since then is that those endless hours have diminished to cherished moments.

It’s all good, though. Life gets busy, and life even gets hard from time to time; that’s what makes it so great in the long run. You get to look back on those tough times that you fought hard to get through, and you see the inner strength and courage you discovered to get to the other side.

One of my favorite daybook activities that focuses on those memorable times is to take any span of time and focus on the events and moments that truly defined that time period. This is a great exercise for anybody who might be interested in memoir writing.

It works like this: Whatever the time period, divide it into five to seven manageable sections. For example, if I want to focus on my adult life (25 years), I might create five sections that each covers a 4- to 5-year span of time (21-25, 26-30, 31-36, 37-41, and 42-46). Then, within each section, brainstorm all of the major events (good, bad, neutral) that happened and that are relevant to you. Finally, you can do one of two things. You can select a single event to bring to life, or you can look for some kind of emerging theme that connects several of the events.

Either way, you’ve got probably 15 or so story starters to launch into about your life. This not only gives you the time to slow down and really reflect on those events; it makes them permanent, archiving them for your personal historical record of your life. Even if you choose to never share a word of what you write, at least you have it down in ink for yourself.

I’m looking at that graphic once again as I wrap up tonight’s post (rather late, as well). It reminds me of something else now, something that I do find the time for every day. It reminds me of the peace and calm I feel when I am writing, either here to all of you, or simply in my own daybook–that spiral-bound, Staples eco-friendly notebook that I can’t go anywhere without anymore. It is during these times that the calm waves and invisible mists of brackish waters soothe me once more.

I think I’ve found my writing topic for tomorrow…what might you write about?





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