This post forms part of a serialisation eventually building into a complete reference on Journaling for Creativity and the writer's notebook. One that will demonstrate how to journal in order to improve creativity and effectiveness of artists, writers or anyone needing to be creative.
This post appears in the personal dialogue section because when naming your journal there are aspects that occur which, although not immediately apparent, are a perfect combination with personal dialogue entries.
One writer tweeted on the web that she referred to her journal as a friend, and that by doing so she had given it not just a name but also a character.
She stated that after naming it, she gained far more from her involvement with her journal.
Initially this may sound strange to some people; after all it is only a notebook, an inanimate object.
To some people, naming a journal will sound “twee” and “soppy”, but is it?
Think how in everyday life it is more acceptable for people to converse with and confess to a diary. How often have we heard "Dear diary", without realising the significance of those two simple words. It is because from a previous precedence a diary can have a named persona, one that we may confess our all to.
If an object has a name and a persona, then your mind will find it far more acceptable to enter into a conversation with it, even though the object cannot answer back. Quite simply your mind accepts it as a suitable conversation partner.
By way of example, which of these could you easily have a conversation with?
A gate post
A teddy bear
A large stone
Easier with the teddy bear than the gate post?
Any difference in difficulty between the dog and the teddy bear?
I hope you can now see that naming a journal is not “twee”. It’s the way our minds are wired; the logical mind rejects it but our creative mind embraces it.
So give your journal a name and by doing so, give it a persona. It is far easier to have a conversation with "Jack" or "Jane" than "it". As your journal develops its own persona in your mind, you will find yourself being able to work with him/her, conversations will become two-way and fortunately, common courtesy forces you to listen attentively to the other side of the conversation.
An inert notebook or some clever electronics will not convince the mind to engage in meaningful conversations any more than it wished to talk to the gate post.
However, having conversations with a persona in the form of a journal is an effective way of talking to yourself.
Have you named your journal? Do you think of it as a dear friend?
Let us know your thoughts and insights about naming your journal in the comments area.
Photo credit: Teddy Bear's Reading Group, by John .