Journaling is Hard
Not physically hard. Just hard to do regularly.
The review pages are probably the most difficult portion of Define My Day. They don’t seem hard until you feel obligated to fill them in. It’s hard for most people because by the end of the day, we’re tired, our willpower is low, and we are mentally checked out.
Here are three reasons we should develop the habit of journaling anyway.
Get off the hamster wheel
When we set aside time at the end of the day to journal, we pop our minds out of gear for a moment. Whatever we’re caught up in… distraction, recounting things that may have gone wrong, or anything that has us on cruise control until we hit the pillow.
By taking ten minutes (or less) to review our day, we can be develop a mindfulness about our actions, better understand difficult situations, and help ourselves be more aware as we go through our next day.
It’s not always easy, especially when a day was particularly good or bad. I feel that’s when it’s most important. If a day was really good, I want to have a record of it and create a deeper understanding of why it was so good.
If a day was bad, I want to take the time to work through the thoughts on paper. Studies have shown that journaling can help us better understand our emotions and manage stress.
Better understand our results
When we do a weekly or monthly review, we strengthen the connection between our daily actions and our goals.
How often have you set a goal and then got on with your week, never performing any action related to that goal? Why did that happen? That’s an important question to ask.
Many times, even when we start with intention, we are quickly sidetracked by life or maybe bad habits.
By getting in the habit of reviewing our progress, we can better understand how our daily actions impact our ability to move our lives forward toward our goals.
Better understand our goals
This is one the the most valuable and understated benefits of the weekly and monthly review sections of Define My Day.
If we find ourselves not reaching our goals that we laid out for ourselves, we want to understand why.
Why aren’t we moving in the direction we say we want to?
Many times, it’s simply because we keep getting sidetracked by distraction or competing goals or obligations. Other times, it’s because we’re not motivated to accomplish the goals. Exploring why helps us understand if it’s simply a matter of changing behavior or changing our goals.
What to do today…
Write without thinking too much about it. Simply get in the habit of putting pen to paper and writing about whatever comes to mind. It could literally take 2 minutes but the benefit over a few weeks could be huge.