Journal: Why and How to Keep one on your trips

Best time to start journaling was 10 years ago, the second best time is now!

A journal is a place where you can engrave the details of your adventure, track inspiring plans for the future, have a personal history log, clean your mind, and heart of emotional baggage. Be it details prior to your trip, during, or after. 

A documented exciting time and personal log can be reviewed and remembered, so keeping a journal is a perfect way to do so.

But, why would you take away some precious time from your trips and spend it on writing? 

Here are some reasons why you should keep a journal:

REMINDERS

July 26

Check on Mom

When you are out and away from your daily routine, it is easy to forget stuff. You get lost in time, mood, and activities that simple reminder will slip you by. This is double true especially when you are in a different time zone and you have a task to fulfill back home. If you build the habit of checking your journal when your days start, it will feed you these reminders especially when your digital aids fail to do their job.

KEEPING TABS

July 27

  • Johnny Blue – met him on the trails. Amazing guy from Tirol. Will be in Switzerland next month. Spoke about doing a climb together +43- 123-45661
  • Staying at Noah’s inn tonight. Amazing and cozy place!   
Journal: Why and How to Keep one on your trips 1
Photo by: Ryan

A lot of things happen during your trip. Your journal can help you keep a tab of big and small details during your adventures that can easily get tangled in your schedule. You can keep track of your budget, how far you hiked or cycled for the day, a place you’ve eaten at, and didn’t want to forget. Organize your thoughts and the events of your days in your journal.

MEMORIES

“Writing isn’t letters on paper. It’s communication. It’s memory” – Isaac Marion

During this coronavirus pandemic when you were stuck indoors, how much fun did you have digging through memoirs of your past adventures? Years from now, you’d be thankful for keeping records of an amazing day hiking in the mountains or when you suffered a bad fall. 

Embedding letters and sketches of exciting moments that you cannot go back to are something that you owe your future self. These recordings are, of course, possible by the endless gadgets that you can get your hands on but there is something with a journal that makes the memories more tangible and priceless. 

Out in nature, in someplace exploring, when your soul is free, there are tons of emotions, ideas, inspirations, and realizations that pop out from every corner. Catch them before they disappear. Note them down in your journal before they vanish.

INSPIRATION FOR CREATING AND SHARING FUTURE CONTENT

If you love sharing your adventures by writing blogs, articles, or a book, then your journal is a perfect place to pull your experiences together. When you are out in the wild for some time and are focused on just living in the moment, it is easy to forget the small details – small details that you might want to share and will add profoundness to your write-ups.

That is why your journal is a handy piece of inspiration in securing your memories and eventually penning your adventures. Especially so that most of the time, you do not have time to write immediately after your trip. 

FILL YOUR DOWNTIME

The early mornings and evenings when you do not have much to do, make it a habit to fill in your journal. Opening it up before your day starts will update you on your reminders, activities, and expectations of the day ahead. 

Sum up the events of your day by writing in your journal in the evenings. Spending a couple of minutes every day will keep the events fresh.

FIRE STARTER

When you are out in the wild often, you know that paper can be a real lifesaver. This is especially true in wet conditions when you can’t light a fire. In these cases, you can use pages of your journal.

So, you want to keep a diary but you’d think that it will take away time that is meant for fun. We get you. You want to be in the moment and make the most of your time while you are out there. 

However, keep in mind that journaling does not have to be time-consuming and complicated. 

Here are some tips to let you keep up with journaling:

KEEP IT SHORT

July 28

Very hot day. Managed to hike for 6 hrs, 1000m ascent. Refreshing dip in the lake! Noah made an awesome dinner! Had to turn in early.

Keep your entries in short, ‘snackable content’. Your memory will fill the small and significant details in between. After several hours of hiking during a hot day, you would definitely remember that amazing feeling of the lake, and the rewarding taste of dinner afterward.

By avoiding long entries, you’ll stop thinking that you have to allot time to write your journal. 

Journal: Why and How to Keep one on your trips 2
Photo by: Calum MacAulay

KEEP IT RAW

July 29

Incredble day! Met an amazing bunch of hikers at Fan’s Point. Hiked together to the hut and spent an awesome night together. Interesting conversations on …Reminder to check a book called Essentialism

Keep your entries raw. It does not have to be formal, profound and well-written. Add sketches, forget the spelling or grammatical mistakes. If you have the time, you can always, of course, keep your entries straight. But focus on the essence – your ideas, observations, discoveries along the way.

BE CREATIVE

When the time does permit, put an aesthetic touch to your journal. Sketch a rare flower that you encountered during your hike, draw a landscape, or be creative with your kit list! Even simple doodles provide nice and refreshing visual memories. 

Journal: Why and How to Keep one on your trips 3
Photo from Touring Monkey’s bike trip across Europe

 

JOURNAL KIT

Keep a simple, light kit for journaling. Depending on how you do your entries, you can keep a pen, pencil, highlight, or a few colored pencils and a small glue. In most cases, a pen and a simple notebook are what all it takes!

Lock up Your Adventures in a Journal

If you are out of range and when your devices are out of battery, broken, or simply can’t be used, your journal will keep you on track. 

Keeping a journal is comforting and rewarding at the same time. Although we are bombarded with digital devices that can serve the functions of a journal, there is a genuine and lingering connection between your written words and the moments that you were in. You might have taken a lot of photos while you are on top of the mountain but penning out the emotions and sights while you were there is something else.

Fill your senses with your adventures. Refill your future self with these adventures by walking through the lines of your journal.

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