why i keep a public journal / think out loud

this morning i had a rapid-fire text convo with a dear friend about many things, including putting unedited drafts / morning pages in public. it made me reflect on the many reasons i do this and also want to write them down (in public). you’ll see why.

i love the idea of working out loud

see harold jarche’s blog post about this. so many good reasons.

it actually makes me journal

i’ve started journaling maybe 6 or 7 times over my life. none of them stuck. this one is sticking, at least for now. i think it’s different to know that people get some benefit from me working/thinking out loud. that feedback is actually part of the process

other people do/have done it

this is basically self-explanatory, but to draw it out: other people i respect do this (especially curtis ogden). and among the many things i’ve learned about self-driven change it’s that one of the easiest ways to get started is to emulate someone else. it’s how kids learn and if it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me.

i don’t think that means copying other people wholesale, but it does mean starting out by emulating and then, via the process of doing the same actions, learning what works and what doesn’t, and then adjusting (error correcting) as needed.

i like sharing the ideas

it has been infinitely valuable to my coaching practice to have these little snippets written up to share. it’s also been good to share them with other people, too, especially when something comes up in conversation that i’ve already put some thought into.

having post stubs helps accelerate my other writing

having a running stream of shitty first drafts helps kickstart my more formal writing in other contexts (like on my medium blog or via the places i’ve written for work like iisc and colab radio). see diagram below.

sketch of my post stubs here turn into published posts elsewhere

i think it makes the world more interesting

in the pre-internet and pre-personal computer days i think it made sense for only processed writing to get published. publishing was a resource-intensive (human and natural) process. now that it’s trivial from several perspectives (personal barriers aside), i think the world is more interesting when people think out loud. the ability to interact with each other’s raw(ish) thoughts is fascinating. i’ve been influenced so much by reading other people’s thoughts / morning pages / drafts and i want the world to exist where everyone’s thoughts are valued. our thoughts are one of the few things that the world probably can’t have enough of.

it’s helping me learn github and markdown


words / writing / post-processing
440w / ???min / ???min