You’d think it’s easy to use your blog as a journal, but in reality, it’s not that simple. You don’t say everything you think, and you don’t blog everything you journal.
Say there was a meeting at work. Cosmo, one of the system administrators, was leading a discussion in favor of pushing a desktop shortcut to create support tickets to all computers in our system and phase out our firstname.lastname@example.org email address. I had a couple of conflicting points to mention, but I couldn’t bring myself to talk in the meeting. I ended up sending an email instead, raising my concerns.
I will write the above in my journal, making a note of the meeting and what I wanted to say, including the email I sent. Taking this as is though and using it as a blog post doesn’t work well.
For one, using real names is never a good idea. The same goes for the email contents or anything specific. Being too specific is also boring and shrinks the number of people who’d want to read about it. I need to expand on what I have to say first.
To do so, I like to ask myself why. Since posts should usually be short and convey a single idea, I want to focus on one such why. Looking over the above paragraph, I think the here is “why couldn’t I bring myself to talk about it?” Since I’m writing a personal blog. A certain nervousness, a worry of being exposed, is shooting through my brain. Ah! Looks like I hit a nerve, which means this is personal, which means this is good.
I could write how since my high school days I had issues with confronting opposing opinions to mine. I’m not sure why it started and when, but Authority has always been something I don’t deal with too well. I either follow it too blindly or oppose it to the point of confrontation - and let me tell you, it’s not that great when it starts causing issues at work and with friends. These days I’m better because I know I have an issue and I developed ways to handle it, like the email in the above example.
Isn’t this more appealing than the original journal entry? I think so. You’d probably also agree that more people can relate to this topic. As well, there are no security/privacy issues affecting anyone but myself. Nice.
It takes some time to find those personal points and expose them. It takes even more time to write to the point, with a sense of direction. this is something I’m still struggling with at times.
What about you? Do you prefer to use your blog as a journal, and if so, to what extent? Is your “filter” different? Do you have other tricks?