Just over 5 years ago, I was given one of the best presents I’ve ever received – a “One Line A Day” book – and it’s been my little companion through the most influential stages of my life. From finishing A levels, to starting university, to graduating and starting a new job, it has helped me track not only the vital stages of my life but the ages where I grew the most as a person and overcame the biggest challenges. And because of this, I want to share a mini review on how it works and what I’ve learnt from it.
How Does The “One Line A Day” Book Work?
As simple as it is, you really do just write one line everyday (or in my case, as many lines as can fit!). You can share whatever you like – a quote, something meaningful, what you did that day. For me personally, I wrote a brief description of everything I did that day as if it was a diary in shortened form.
The unique element of this journal is that each page has 5 text blocks for 5 years, so when you return to that page the following year, you can see what you wrote on that exact day the year before, and the year before that etc.
What I Love About The “One Line A Day” Book
It’s simple, easy to use, and most of all, it’s just really fascinating. We go about our lives everyday and often we forget about the simple things that happened, but sometimes they’re the most impactful of all.
Sometimes, I’d go to write in the journal for today, and I’d notice that a small event had recurred from the previous year, such as seeing the same friend on the exact same day the year before, or eating the same meal. Sure, it was a coincidence and didn’t particularly symbolise anything, but it’s funny how small things like this can line up.
It’s also such a great way of remembering past memories. Before writing the journal for that specific day, I’d really enjoy reading back on the previous years just to see what I was up to. And often it was very different – as I changed as a person, my habits naturally changed too. It was so interesting to see my progression as a person and how that reflected in the actions I took in my life.
How Did I Manage To Stick With It For 5 Years?
This is a question I often asked myself too, but I think when something becomes so meaningful to you, it naturally becomes a habit. I’d sit down for 5 minutes every evening to fill it in before bed, and it’s not any different than using that 5 minutes to scroll through your phone. Plus, I liked the challenge – once I start something, I try my ultimate best to follow through with it, and this felt like such a big but rewarding challenge. And I’m so glad I stuck with it – having 5 years packed into one tiny book feels so so special.
What Did I Learn From It?
The biggest, and perhaps really obvious, conclusion I drew from using the “One Line A Day Book” was that people change a LOT in 5 years. Even in 1 year. Even in a month, a week, a day. Reading back on past entries I’d written, I not only noticed the different events and situations I placed myself in, but the change in mindset too. A lot of my earlier entries were shorter and kind of negative too, but I felt like I had so many defining moments in the following couple years where I really morphed my mindset and my health into a much better place. Having this within the diary feels so important to me because that was a really important moment in my life, where I felt like I really became myself, accepted myself and learnt about the power of self-developing and seeing the world in a positive light.
I also learnt that, if I put my mind to it, I can do something that seems initially impossible. Writing something everyday for 5 years? Well, that would seem daunting to pretty much everybody, and at the start I wasn’t sure I could do it. But like anything, if you want to achieve something, you make time for it, you prioritise it, and you make it happen.
I think, more than anything, it’s also a huge reminder that everything is temporary. What I was doing, how I felt, the way I looked at the world and the people in it the year before, is so different to now. And it will be the same the next year, and the year after that, and the year after that too. As humans, we naturally progress. There is no stagnant waters. There is hope that you can become whatever you want to be in the future. It just hasn’t been written yet.
Have you tried the “One Line A Day” book or anything similar?
Or perhaps want to give it a try?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!