Are online blogs and the latest tablets and smartphones to blame for the decline in the traditional practice of writing in a diary? A report by pen specialist, Pen Heaven, has found that adults in the UK are turning their backs on writing in a diary.

Sure for some it’s like cleaning their teeth – they can’t go to bed without writing in their diary – but new figures show that the art of diary writing is dying out in Britain, with less than 20% still writing regularly.

However, a surprising 37% of the 18-24 year olds surveyed continue to write in a diary but this figure drops to 9% in the 45-54 age range. The figure is also particularly bad in the 55-64 and 35-44 age ranges, with only 10% and 15% respectively sharing that they still regularly write in a diary.

The figures shatter the age old image of evenings before bed, spent with a biro and diary. The survey of 500 people found that those in Scotland write significantly less than those in England, Wales and Ireland. Only 16% still regularly write in a diary in Scotland, followed by 18% in Wales, 26% in England and 33% in Northern Ireland.  

Factors behind the decline are varied – the golden age of diary writing took place when TVs weren’t commonplace and technology such as smartphones and tablets were non existent, so families were less distracted. Smartphones and tablets also offer their own platforms to write notes and diary entries, meaning people no longer have to rely on the traditional diary format.  

However there are health benefits to writing a diary: keeping a diary can help manage anxiety, reduce stress and help you cope with depression. It can also help control your symptoms and improve your mood by prioritising your problems, fears and concerns, track symptoms day to day so you can recognise triggers and learn ways to control them. It also provides an opportunity for positive self talk and identifying negative thoughts and behaviours. 

To view the full results of the survey, click here