Journaling – 7 Steps to the Perfect Journal

Jul 03, by Clara in Know-How & Insights

We have often written about the importance of writing down goals and projects in our blog posts. If you actually write out your goals and plans, or type them, then you increase your level of commitment to them. From thoughts emerge structured ideas and projects, and then you’re prepared to take action. The next thing you can do is improve how you plan out your days, organize whatever you’d like to get done and evaluate your progress. Writing things down is also a big help when it comes to reminding you just what’s on your plate.

This is the perfect tie in to another challenge: Spend a little time recording something in your journal every day! There’s no minimum word count or time requirement – it’s only important that you stick with it and write something every day. The journaling challenge lasts for 2 months, and you can join in anytime. Exchange ideas with other Goalify users, and get valuable tips that can help you to be more consistent with journaling. Once again we’re giving away three months of Goalify Unlimited: this time we’re drawing from the most hard-working writers.

Here are 7 steps to better journaling:

Find the right media for you.

Some people prefer to write on their computer, tablet or smartphone, and others have the feeling that pen and paper is best for them. Even though we all spend so much time in front of the computer, or perhaps for just that reason, I recommend journalling in your own handwriting. Get a nice notebook and a quality pen, one that’s really a joy to write with. In the end, journalling should also be fun! The better prepared you are – if you can be sure that your notebook, pen and writing area are ready when you are – the easier it will be for you to integrate journaling into your everyday life, and moreover to make it a habit.

Start by looking at where you are now.

Write down how your life is going right now. Describe your working situation, your personal relationships and any other observations you have about your current living circumstances. The more you understand about your now conditions and the more you know about your starting position, the more you’ll be able to be clear about your goal. It makes good sense take 30 minutes or so to do this exercise – just write down everything that comes to mind. Personal reflexion can have some amazing effects, and it can be a big help when it comes to finding solutions to problems.

Write every day.

Once you’re finished taking stock of your life now, start writing regularly: just write whatever comes into your head for a minute or two. Of course if you want to, it’s also fine to write more. The important thing here is not writing a specific amount; instead, it’s about doing it consistently.

You might want to write about how you feel, or you could describe something that annoyed you, or maybe you want to write about what you’re hungry for. Some days it will seem like there are fewer things to write about – nonetheless keep at it and write regularly.

Once taking a few minutes every day to write in your journal becomes a habit for you, up your writing time if you like. If you notice that your consistency starts to wane due to the increased time you are trying to put into journaling, just cut the duration back to something that’s more manageable for you.

Record your goals and your successes.

If have a goal that you would like to work on or there’s a project you’d like to complete, write it down right away. It doesn’t matter if it’s something big or something small – it’s about writing, and writing consistently. Also, don’t forget to journal about things that you’ve accomplished and anything else that you’re proud of doing. That includes small successes that happen during your everyday life as well as bigger achievements. It’s important to record things so that you can review what you have accomplished later on.

Write about things that inspire you.

It’s doesn’t have to always be about goals and successes – sometimes you might want to write down an inspirational quote. Maybe there’s a good one for you among our motivational quotes? (LYou can also include photos, concert tickets or postcards as reminders…the main thing is that you’re inspired by it.

Take your journal everywhere you go.

So you’re going on vacation or a business trip, or you’re leaving the city for a little weekend getaway? It would be ideal if you take your journal with you wherever you go. Then you always have it on hand so you can collect your thoughts and write them down, along with inspirations and any other things that you want to remember. Make use of that long train ride or flight and write about what’s on your mind.

Do a monthly review of your journaling

At the end of every month, read through your journal and check out what you’ve done. Take a look at any changes that have happened in your life. Make a brief note of what’s become better and what’s become worse. Some things that seem to be big problems end up being smaller than you first thought. There could also be a little success, something maybe you almost didn’t notice, that becomes a source of joy and satisfaction.

Sort your journal according to topic.

Assign a color to different topics (e.g. personal in blue, business in green, problems in red). Record your color´coding system somewhere, like as an index or table of contents for your journal, and then add color to the text after every writing session. That will make it easier for you to find things later. After you have more writing under your belt, you’ll be especially thankful that you set up such a system

What do you think of the idea of journaling? Do you want to take part in our challenge? Can you think of some more tips for our list?

 

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