Let me be clear, this post isn’t necessarily for regular Easy Journaling readers. You understand the basics and many of you are consistently leveling up what you do with your digital journaling abilities.
No, I’m talking to everyone else. Not just everyone who comes to this site but everyone who has downloaded a journal or diary app.
This is a letter to the entire world of anyone who has even thought about downloading a journal or diary app for their smartphone or tablet.
As fast as the EJ community and movement is growing, it is still just a drop in the bucket in comparison to this world I am describing. Thousands and thousands of people download these apps every day and millions and millions have used one. This is a huge group and one that frustrates me consistently.
Alright, so how are so many people using simple apps so wrong? First of all, keeping a personal journal can be a life changing event and simply diving into it without furthering your education isn’t the best path to success. Especially with digital journaling where for every benefit there is a risk and potential heartache.
The second sin that nearly everyone commits is that they give their complete and utter trust to a developer that they know nothing about. These individuals or companies do not have a vested interest in your journaling data! You made a one time purchase for a few dollars (or less). The only thing they care about is making your happy enough to either leave a positive review or not leave a negative review.
Alright, to be fair, there are some fantastic developers. I’ve personally met several of them and they do sincerely care about the users of their app. But not only are they the exception to the rule but there is no saying that they won’t move on to something else someday and leave their journal app project behind.
Keeping a journal is a big deal, regardless of the reason that you personally want to do it. Educating yourself on the best practices of using a journal app will go a long way in changing it from a cute past time to a deep, personal and consistent practice that can change your life.
You must take control of your data. Don’t download an app that doesn’t have the ability to export in some sort of format (.pdf is my personal favorite but .txt, .html or .rft can work as well). Want to know what apps will export your entries? Well, we have built from scratch a tool that will do exactly that and more (for free) and pulls the suggestions from over 70 journal and diary apps from scratch.
If you have been journaling in an app that you think may be the wrong fit, that’s okay.
The good news is that you can change now and start journaling in a better app today. I highly encourage it!
The bad news is that you may have to individually copy and paste every entry of your old journal into your new one. I’ve been there before (ahem, more than once) and it was a pain in the fingertips. I’ve learned from those experiences, however, and won’t be going down that road again.
Help me share the word my friends. There are too many frustrated journalers out there and they need to hear this message.