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Should it be a Journal or Blog??

Should it be a Journal or Blog??

We are very fortunate to live in a world with so many different options for self-expression. Just think – on any given day, you can choose a social media platform, app, or a website to communicate ideas, reflect on experiences, and share your thoughts on any topic with the world.

So, why did I start a website?

When I started my website, my goal was to consistently learn, grow, and give value through my exploration of wine, beer, and spirits. I wanted to share what I was learning with the rest of the world, documenting the journey in my own words. It was also a live study guide for me to constantly review what I have learned.

Along with sharing what I was learning, I wanted to create a space that would allow me to be more vulnerable. I wanted my website to feel like a safe place for me to vent, to write how I was feeling at a given moment… and for a few other reasons.

Some days are better than others.

To be quite honest, I was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury about a year ago. I knew something was wrong a few years back when my speech, ability to find words, and short/long term memory were good one day and horrible the next. Some days are better than others. On the “good” days, I can articulate myself extremely well, think clearly, put words to paper, and express myself concisely. On “bad” days, a 5-year-old could fill in the blanks with words I’m trying to find and say. My memory feels cloudy, and the overall mood is one of pure frustration. I feel that on the “bad” days, people judge me on my intellect, and I don’t blame them. It is definitely a blow to my self-esteem. I know I am better than that. I was not going to let TBI defeat me, and I am thankful that Landsthul Regional Medical Center is close and has a great staff that helps me exercise my mind and live with my shortcomings.

As I was starting my therapy, the medical staff, specifically my speech therapist, advised me to start journaling or blogging as one of many rehabilitation tools. The brain, just like our muscles, can be worked and strengthened with the right exercises.

Writing every day has been rewarding, but it comes with pain and frustration as well. I am literally using the thesaurus to find the right words. Trying to write a 1000-word story often takes me two to three days.

So, I was writing and creating this space on my website, and I ran into a basic question that stumped me for days on end. I actually come back to this over and over, and I am curious to hear what everyone has to say.

Do I call this section a journal or blog?

As I was writing and creating my website, I was wondering whether to call this creative outlet a blog or a journal. Though journaling and blogging have similarities, and can both be beneficial for reflection and self-expression, they are two very different outlets

When I think of a journal, I think of expressing your innermost thoughts. It is writing at its most honest, free form that puts the writer in a vulnerable place. I don’t think you should censor your journal writing. For me, journaling is a form of therapy to help me work through the different issues I face in my life.

When you publish a blog, on the other hand, you write in a different way because you know you have an audience. Or do you? You want to connect with others and communicate a message that resonates with people from all over the world. I feel like it’s important to remember that blogging is a public face, even if you incorporate some of your private life into your posts.

So, which medium is right for me? I ended up calling this section of my writing a journal. I don’t seek the privacy of keeping a journal but want to gain the introspection. On the other hand, I also still want the community and visibility of keeping a blog. Do you feel I should be drawn to one or the other? Should I call this tab a blog or journal?

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