Yesterday, I had a conversation with a youngling in recovery. I invited him to get a pen and paper because the tendency is that we talk about so much we might not be able to remember it all or get back to it later. I asked if they had ever maintained a journal. They mentioned that they had recently started one after our conversations had provided them with numerous valuable insights and experiences about recovery.
I learned the importance of journaling from the moment I entered the doors of Narcotics Anonymous. As one member wisely and honestly said, "You're still high... and probably just a little toxic in your thinking and feelings. How do you expect to remember everything that's being said to you in a meeting or hanging out with us? Here's a pen and a piece of paper. Whenever you hear something that resonates with you or makes you think, 'wow, that's awesome,' write it down. What you write on the paper or journal may become life-saving information later on since we can't be with you all the time."
In my experience, our journals are more than mere keepsakes. They are essential tools for our personal growth. We can regularly use them, revisit them, meditate and pray with them, and add new experiences. They are a proven part that can help our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual development.
The above said, my journals mirror the valuable lessons my sponsor, friends, and others outside the fellowship have patiently shared with me over the years. They're notations of my experiences and my practice as a human being. They are my legacy to my kids and a part of what I've left for them in my "Will." I have a feeling they'll be more valuable than money, which being a monk, I don't have a lot of anyway. They'll know fully who I was, what I thought about, my adventures, and how I met my life day-to-day with people. Life is shorter than one might imagine. Trust me on this.
My invitation toward healing and recovery is to embrace journaling as a part of our path, just as it was encouraged... dare I say, "prescribed" to me by a predecessor.
一I Appreciate You Dearly