Start Journaling Today and Never Quit Again

Through our previous two posts, we learned journal writing is a habit that countless successful people have in common, and physically writing has specific strengths that digital documentation lacks (especially when it comes to learning, retention and reflection). That is all great, but anyone that has attempted to keep a daily journal knows it's more common to stop than to keep going. So, how can one start this powerful habit and never stop? Below we will discuss some of the main points that cause managers to stop this process as quickly as they start and provide some quick tips for starting consistent journaling today.

The Painful Process of Journaling

So many people attempt to start this simple but life changing routine and fail due to either an overwhelming amount of clutter (apps, calendars, notebooks, software…etc) or too broad of an approach (blank notebooks) with no structure to keep them on track. I was one of those who started and stopped this practice multiple time before making changes that have kept me at the habit daily for years without stop. 

Below is a quick list of some methods tried in the process of making a journal to suit overwhelmed managers/business owners. This list explains why these systems did not fit the needs of management in trying to control their crazy days, be productive and actually have a life. As each of these methods did not meet necessity, a new system was attempted. Slowly, The Manager’s Journal was born and developed to fulfill its purpose.

Whether you are using The Manager's Journal, a different system that works for you or, more commonly, have attempted and stopped this habit, this list will likely resonate with the pains you have experienced.

Broad To-Do List Approach (Blank notebooks):

  • User constantly needs to update, clean-up and rewrite long lists
  • No organization/system provided that is not created and maintained by the user
  • No future planning implementation
Apps:
  • Too slow for pulling up and documenting/changing tasks as the day progresses
  • Most are too broad or become very complex quickly as features are added
  • No free space for quick drawings or notes from the day
  • Not as quick or effective method in comparison to writing
Ready Made Journal Systems:
  • Journal/Planner systems for sale are good for planning your life, but are not designed for assistance in the workplace of most managers. Although writing a daily affirmation in the morning & evening and only being provided with three lines to write exactly what you will accomplish today sounds great, it is unrealistic to operate as a tool throughout crazy days.
  • Steps were too burdensome and specific 
Day Runner:
  • Great for daily task completion and documentation of past days
  • Lack of future planning
  • Most are restrictive on working space provided
  • Typically lack free space for quick drawings or notes from the day
Calendar:
  • Good for future planning but not daily planning/execution of tasks
  • Lack of space
  • No free space for quick drawings or notes from the day

 

Never Stop Journaling - Quick Tips

In the years of developing The Manager's Journal, each of the above pain points and many more, have been addressed and accounted for to make our journal a systematized quick easy reference with plenty of space to use whenever needed, address both future/present planning, and simple to keep for a lifetime after finishing each volume to be able to look back on for reference or nostalgia.

Two of the simplest changes our journal system went through with large impacts in terms of consistency:

  • We stopped trying to fit multiple days on one sheet and instead gave each page, no matter how much or little was written, its own day. 
  • Cutting the corners of each page up to the present day. It may seem silly, but this small addition in our system makes flipping the journal open to each day so much quicker/easier. This is what sticking with the habit has to be all about. Just like any habit in life. The easier it is the more likely we to commit to it.  
 ACTION STEPS:
  1. Our main recommendation is to begin a daily organization, planning and reflection ritual in the form of writing. Don't let a lack of clarity be the excuse for poor progress in professional or personal life. Be intentional with your time and leverage the strengths of writing.
  2. Skip the painful process of developing your own system by starting with a designed journal / planner system. If you are a project or business manager, The Manager's Journal has been made for you. Continue to our website to learn more!

Blessings In Your Endevors, 

Ruben Watson 

 

The journal has gone through so many phases over the years. Multiple other systems and apps can not be pictured. To say that perfecting our system has been an obsession would be an understatement. Take advantage of our hard work. www.themanagersjournal.com


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