This is one of those subjects that makes sense for everyone, but only few put it into effect. If you ask people about the importance of having a journal, they will tell you that they understand that it’s something that will help them achieve the goals. But the truth of the matter is that it’s more than help, it’s crucial for achieving your goals.
Recording my thoughts, why ?
The reason why writing a journal is essential for your success is simply because as humans we still can’t rely on our memory. We have great abilities and unlimited power within us, we can’t say the same thing about human memory. However the benefits of having a journal is beyond just recording history.
A journal is there to be your best companion. When you feel down and depressed, writing about it will help you overcome those feelings. When you have a great flow of ideas and inspirations, writing them down will strengthen them with more clarity. We will discuss some of the ways that will help you do that. But now, let’s talk about the challenge you will face to develop this discipline. It will be very difficult at first trial, because it is easy to do but also easy not to do.
I remember the day I decided to keep a journal of my activities, I was so caught up in technicalities like what type of journal should I buy, and how many journals etc. That didn’t help at all, and after a while I dropped the whole idea and quit doing it. Now that might happen to you. Here is how to deal with that : “declare to yourself that you will discipline yourself to write at least one page each day, no matter what “. Your journal gives you a chance to talk to yourself and record your observations, it also enables you to analyze the dilemma you’re facing from a different perspective when you review your writing.
It’s more than just writing
Your journal is a deep look into what you are made of, a look into your inner self. That can sound scary, that’s why most people avoid writing it. It’s a reflection of what’s going on in that mind of yours, knowing exactly who you are at the moment even if it hurts. But fear not, this brutal exposure of your character is one step closer to fixing what’s wrong and strengthening what’s right. It’s indeed the only way one can truly know thyself.
I am reminded by an example given by Jim Rohn that shows how journals can alter your life. After reviewing his journals, this guy saw a recurring negative pattern that made him stop and think about it. Every Wednesday, after having lunch with two of his colleagues, he would write negatively. So he was wondering if the lunch discussion is the cause of all this. He then looked at the other Wednesdays where he didn’t have lunch with these guys for whatever reason. Then the evidence was clear to him, in these days with no encounter with these fellas, he wrote something positive. Out of the blue, the truth struck him. They were affecting him negatively. Then he went on to solve this problem knowing what caused it in the first place.
Things to remember
Your journals should be private and only for you to fill it and review it. Don’t worry about your grammar or your style of writing. This book is made by you, for you. You should feel free to write it the way you look. It’s all yours. One advice that can be of value to you : buy a journal that you would probably take you with you anywhere without being concerned about its size or rigidity. The fist time , you will experiment with different styles and shapes until you find the one that suits you. We all went through that.
Another thing to keep in mind, try to write the date and place and time before starting to translate your thoughts to words. It will help you tremendously in finding patterns and organizing your records. The example given before can not work of the guy didn’t take the time to write the date and place in his journal. So make sure that you don’t miss that. You will thank yourself later.
I want to finish by saying that journals are also a great way to develop effective communication skills. You will learn that by converting your feelings into words and expressions, you can express yourself more clearly to others but more importantly to yourself. Many times we get this amazing flow of ideas in a chaotic manner but because we don’t take the time to write them down , it all goes to dust. Sometimes because we become clear with our thinking, we can analyze and assess our faults more precisely, thus doing half the job of solving the challenge.