February 22, 2001

Me, Myself, & Others


I have a confession to make: I don't read many other journals.

I like the idea of journals (or else I wouldn't have my own!) and there are many journals out there that I admire.. some that I even drool over. But I can count on one hand the number that I read regularly.

Sometimes I'd find a wonderful journal and bookmark it - never to go back.
For awhile I thought it was procrastination but that doesn't make sense.. I don't procrastinate with regard to things I enjoy.

Finally I realized why this is: I can't follow someone's story without taking it on. It's part of the same reason that I go through phases when I don't read much. I just don't have the emotional energy for it.

I know I'm not supposed to commit energy to every book or journal I read but I don't know how not to. It's easier to just not read them, especially when I have little to spare.

That doesn't mean anything is going badly at the moment.. things are stable and we might even have the first happy spring in our home since 1998. (Last year my father was ill, and two years ago my brother-in-law died of cancer.) But after fighting off my own worst nature (a tendency towards depression, which is also under control these days) and sympathizing with my friends' problems (mostly having to do with ill and aging parents - it's an epidemic!) I need distraction in my leisure activities.

I remember years ago coming into a room where my stepmother was watching one of the daytime talk shows. I asked her why she watched them, since I found them depressing and didn't want to hear about strangers' problems. She replied that when she watched those shows, she realized her own problems weren't so bad.
I understand that, and wish I could be so detached.. but I can't.

It ties in with the personality type that the Keirsey test gave me: iNFp, or "Healer".

Healers present a calm and serene face to the world, and can seem shy, even distant around others. But inside they're anything but serene, having a capacity for personal caring rarely found in the other types. Healers care deeply about the inner life of a few special persons, or about a favorite cause in the world at large. And their great passion is to heal the conflicts that trouble individuals, or that divide groups, and thus to bring wholeness, or health, to themselves, their loved ones, and their community.

I don't believe you can necessarily compartmentalize a personality on the basis of an online questionnaire, but this one seems to have worked out pretty accurately. It's comforting to recognize myself in the context of a personality type (and a complimentary one at that!) rather than in a book or article about abnormal psychology.

Well, to get back to the original point: until now I avoided maintaining a "links" page because I would be sure to leave someone out, and because, by not actively looking for new journals, I know I'm missing out on some wonderful ones. Realizing that I'm not a big reader for a valid reason, other than laziness and procrastination, somehow changed my mind about linking.

I feel compelled to say, though, that the list is far from comprehensive; it includes journals and/or journal authors that I admire but many that would fit into that category aren't included because I haven't found them or because their journals are inactive at the moment. I do hope to update the list regularly.

I'll make a separate page for this but in the mean time, here they are, in alphabetical order:

Again, it's not complete or comprehensive; if I stepped on anyone's toes please let me know!

Stop by the Forum, too, to recommend your favourites - or even your own journal. Don't be shy, it's an official invitation!

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