Journaling Setup Switch Up

There’s been a change — switcheroo — in my journaling setup…again! So I jump between journal tools; it’s one of my quirks. I once relied on general note-taking apps and then moved to dedicated journaling apps. But now I’ve returned to a notes app. Of course, it’s the Apple Notes app.

I was using Day One, a great journaling app owned by Automattic, on my Mac. Its free tier has nice features like a built-in calendar view of your entries. And the streak feature with accompanying widget really helped me make a habit of journaling daily. I’ve journaled over 200 days straight! The Day One app also let me easily add a photo to each entry, which is something I never did before but have grown to like it.

But I’m not sticking with Day One because, after more than seven months of using it daily, I could never bring myself to pay for the full version just to gain one key feature: multi-device sync. By sticking to the free tier, I journaled on my MacBook but not on my iPhone. I thought I’d be okay with the limitation or that I’d finally pull the trigger to buy into the full deal.

Turns out I thought wrong.

I generally dislike software subscriptions, so I was reluctant to pay for Day One annually. And when I really needed or wanted to journal on my phone, I would add an entry to Apple Notes. Then later at my Mac, I’d move the entry to Day One. After doing this several times over the course of months, I finally realized I could simply journal in Apple Notes, like I’ve done before, and enjoy the cross-device sync feature I’d been trying to live without.

Apple Notes and iCloud are as reliable for me as they’ve ever been. The software is native to Apple Devices, like my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook. And I’ve essentially already paid for the apps in the hardware purchase price, buying the “whole widget.” Apple Notes has password locking on each note for extra security, and it lets me add multiple photos to journal entries, whereas the free tier of Day One limits to one photo per entry.

So that’s why I returned to a notes app for journaling. It’s simple, easy, and includes the main features I need without costing extra money. Day One is very nice, but I didn’t use most of its features. Switching back to Apple Notes means I can minimize the number of apps in my life by one less, which kind of makes my day.


What do you use to journal? Have you tried Day One or Evernote? What would get you to make daily entries?