How Journaling Can Help You Boost Productivity and Performance
Jul 27, by Tanya Alvarez
Everything happens so fast when you’re busy working that brilliant ideas could slip your mind. One day, you’re toying with a new business strategy. The next day, you can’t remember every detail of it.
What if that simple idea could propel your business to success? Imagine the gains you have lost just because you didn’t jot down your thoughts on a piece of paper.
There’s a reason why our grade school teachers taught us to keep a journal. Of course, those days when a journal is for your campus crushes and summer outings are gone. As a professional or a business owner, your journal is now a tool for success. It helps in organizing and recording ideas, tasks, and events so that you have something to go back to.
Journaling can also practice self-discipline and increase productivity. In fact, Harvard Business School reported that dedicating 15 minutes to reflect after a full day of work can improve performance and bring positive impacts on one’s professional success.
Another study strengthened this finding when it discovered that employees who keep a journal perform better than those who spend their full office hours for work-based tasks only.
Keeping the habit of writing and reviewing your journal does not always have to be done individually. You can work with your accountability group so that you have many minds to reflect and assess your actions, goals, and decisions.
5 Benefits of Journaling:
You don’t need to be a good writer to benefit from journaling, because having a journal is not about writing. It is about the process. Check out the wonders you can enjoy when you take a few minutes to jot those ideas down.
1. It clears your mind.
Carrying those 20 new ideas to implement and 20 tasks to do for the day can be a burden. With a journal, you can free your mind with this baggage without worrying about forgetting them. It allows you to focus on more urgent and important things, which can help increase your efficiency and productivity.
2. It organizes your thoughts and allows them to grow.
Ideas become much clearer and faster to figure out when they are visual. When ideas are written down on a piece of paper, it’s easier sort things out, connect the dots, and see opportunities to develop concepts. It’s like planting. When you jot down your ideas, you are planting seeds of thought and letting it grow into a well-rounded plan.
3. It lets you spot bad ideas.
A great journal does not only contain brilliant ideas. It should also help you identify the bad ones so that you can avoid wasting time and energy on them.
Jotting down and reviewing bad ideas can also give birth to good ideas as you think of solutions and improvements to them.
4. It makes tracking and reviewing of actions easy and efficient.
When things go right (or wrong), there’s no pain in going back to things. You can check your journal to look at the actions you have taken. Here, you will know what strategies to recycle and what to avoid.
Keeping a journal also lets you track your progress. Are you accomplishing your goals? Or are you losing track? What went wrong?
5. It makes you more disciplined and productive.
Writing down your goals is the first step to achieving them. Your journal can serve as your reminder that you have things to work on and accomplish. Reading your entries can inspire you to work on your goals.
Moreover, keeping a journal requires commitment and dedication, which can teach you to be more disciplined.
When and How to Do the Review
So, how do you make and review a journal?
Here are fast tips to help you get started:
- Pick your method you are comfortable with. Do you want a paper notebook or a digital app?
- Choose a timing that works for you. It can be in the morning, after work or before you sleep.
- Set at least 15 to 30 minutes to write down your ideas, plans, goals, and anything you want to record.
- Always write the date before you start.
- Every end of the week, go back to what you have written. Ask yourself why these are important to you and where you are right now in achieving your goals.
- After a month or two, compare your first three entries with your last three. Is there progress?
- Practice and make it a habit.
- Want to insure you have this as a daily practice? Create an accountability group that will inspire you to journal everyday.
Journaling with Your Accountability Group Will Help You Keep the Habit
Doing things with the people who share the similar goals and objectives gives you enough motivation. The same thing goes with keeping a journal. When you keep a journal with your accountability group and review your actions with them, it’s easier to maintain the habit as you support and encourage each other.
With that said, let us leave you with these two questions:
- What are the things that you have done today?
- Have you started writing them down?