Photo challenge – 3 ideas to keep you smiling during lockdown

How to Keep a Lockdown Diary?

Keeping a lockdown diary doesn’t take on the same significance for everyone. Some see it as an outlet, as a means of expressing their thoughts, of putting them into words, without judgment or even the need to fully explore them. For others, a lockdown diary should be an account of what life is like in such unprecedented circumstances, a testament of what our generation went through that future ones could look back on. Some write with the intent of, one day, seeing their work published. Some write with a person in mind, some write for themselves.

Whatever the case might be, your own lockdown diary will, no doubt, be very personal and reflect how you experienced this unforeseen situation.

Make It Yours

This could mean anything, really. Whether you feel the need to create something completely unique or want to take this opportunity to write “in the style of”, there certainly is no wrong way to go about crafting your lockdown diary.

You could choose to go digital, to use a beautiful notepad or sheets of blank paper, so long as the medium resonates with you. Even the form itself can be whatever you like. You could simply write down your thoughts or opt for a more artistic design. You may also decide that you prefer not to express yourself using words and create a daily collage, a set of drawings or a photo album whose illustrated pages will speak for you. You could even write a different poem each day…

A Slice of Life

As the name indicates, your lockdown diary is special because it covers an unparalleled event, or more specifically how you are perceiving it, how it is affecting you personally. When it comes to articulating such deep thoughts and emotions, there is no right or wrong way. Once life slowly starts to return to normal, you may decide to continue writing, but what you are describing during these very unusual times will likely have a distinct tone. If you are feeling different, then don’t hesitate to express yourself differently from how you normally would.

A Place for Self-Expression

The best diaries are those whose authors allow themselves to voice highly personal thoughts and opinions. Francis Kilvert, a 19th-century clergyman, for instance wrote that “[British] tourists are the most vulgar, ill-bred, offensive and loathsome”. In his own diary, Ludwig van Beethoven confessed suffering from depression while struggling to keep his deafness a secret. American musician Courtney Love’s version of a diary was comprised of her own writings as well as letters and photographs. And who could forget Anne Frank’s own diary entry where she declared: “Writing allows me to record everything, all my thoughts, ideals and fantasies”?

Words to Share

Whether you decide to share your words with yourself, with your loved ones or with the entire world, write (or create!) with intention. The exercise is truly worth doing if you feel like you have a story to tell. Your lockdown diary could tell the story of how you are experiencing lockdown itself, but it could also be completely unrelated, or somewhere in between. 

The best piece of advice we could give you is to simply start. Once you begin trusting the process and allowing inspiration to guide you, you’ll be surprised at what you can create. Let your lockdown diary be introspective if you feel like it, but don’t hesitate to make it fun and even quirky if that reflects your feelings better. Finally, while a diary is typically personal, feel free to make it a family creation where your kids can let their own creativity shine too!

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