At the start of last year I committed to writing a journal. I had never kept a journal and I had read about the benefits of keeping a journal from many others.
To start with it was just a collection of goals and objectives that I had in my mind and it was very interesting seeing them written down. I say written down, but I had decided to the One Notee app to record my journal.
One note is a great app, you can use it on a computer, tablet or phone in most instances. It keeps everything synced and you can password protect private notebooks, tabs or pages.
Using One note for my journal made it convenient and mean’t I didn’t have to worry about carrying a book around with me.
How my writing changed…
As the year went on, I got into reading some very thought provoking books and this started to influence my journal writing. For example books like Stephen Coveys 7 habits of highly effective people and The E-myth Revisited. These books really prompted me to think about why and how I did what I did.
My journal writing reflected this quite heavily as I started to challenge what was really important to me. Looking back the journal was a great tool to channel my thoughts and document what was truly important to me.
It enabled me to focus on putting my mental and physical health in the right place. That then enabled me to focus on my wife and children. I am in an incredibly lucky position of having someone as a wife who is my soulmate. Through my writings and thoughts it made appreciate that my wife and children hadn’t always been in the priority position they should have been.
I used my journal to write a mission statement that gave me a view of the person I wanted to be that is what I would aspire to.
By now the year was coming to an end and then bizarrely I stopped writing in my journal.
At the beginning of 2017 I found myself out of work and with time on my hands. This time allowed me to focus on working towards achieving several personal goals. One of which was becoming healthier and fitter through exercise and diet, something that I hadn’t been very good at. I also wanted to improve the person I was.
By the end of 2017 I had set up my own business and I jumped head first into marketing and trying to get my new business established. I had gone from my extreme to another, lots of time to not much time at all.
Taking the time to stop and reflect on that change made me realise what I had lost by not journaling. The one thing that journaling does is that it forces you to stop and think. It gives you the space to challenge the norms of your life. It didn’t mean that I wasn’t thinking, but as with everything there is a bad way to think and a good way. I had slipped into the not so good.
Stephen Covey wrote that change comes when you realise that there is a space between what happens to you and how you respond to it. All to often, something happens to us and we don’t respond, we react.
Reacting is often impulsive and most certainly isn’t responding. It is frightening when you consider the difference. Writing a journal made me stop and reflect on events that had happened to me, and made me appreciate that all to often I react, rather than pause and respond. It highlighted a weakness in my behaviour.
Taking the time to write this article as highlighted this to me. So, as I endeavour to be a better person my journaling will start again.
Have you stopped doing something recently you regretted? Please tell me in the comments.