In 2015, my goal was to begin a habit of daily writing. The solution was a daily journal.
For me, starting a daily writing habit was a way for me to emulate “successful people”. To start, I began writing freelance articles, attempting a journal, and trying to find a series of prompts.
Daily writing is a New Years Resolution. As with most New Years Resolutions, I fell off the wagon rather quickly.
I did not have a clear purpose of why I wanted to begin the habit. After taking a couple months break, it occurred to me why daily writing is beneficial.
Writing every day boosts creativity, and provides a way to clear your thoughts. A brain dump so you can focus on the day ahead.
I didn’t want to begin aimlessly writing words. I needed some focus. A way to create something beneficial. It doesn’t matter if it is just peace of mind or the next literary masterpiece.
This is how I began to write a “daily journal”.
This is not “Dear Journal”. It’s about what I did yesterday and what my plans for today are. Really, it is a way to structure my thoughts before walking out the door. After a short time, I realized the benefits.
Journaling is a tool to document successes and failures. Providing reflection to better plan for the next day, the next call, or the next promotion. I should have been doing this years ago.
I chose a daily journal structure, and here is what it looks like.
The Daily Journal Structure
I have my daily journal separated into three sections. I take a look at what I did yesterday, how I am now, as well as my plans for today.
It’s a simple concept of past present and future. For me, it provides structure and a nudge to start writing.
Also, I find it easier to write with questions then a blank page.
In the yesterday section, I take a look at the prior day’s tasks. It is a way to reflect on what I have accomplished, read, and learned.
Forcing myself to reflect on the previous day is asking whether I was productive or busy. A way to improve focus and productivity.
The now section is an opportunity to free write. If there is a topic or issue I am thinking about, I can jot it down. Then, I can come back to it later and explore it in more depth.
It is a brain dump opportunity. Mind clearing to be clear, concise, and effective in my daily tasks. Being physically in one place and mentally in another can be a productivity killer.
The final section is planning for the day. Laying out a roadmap of the day’s most important tasks. This is a chance to plan, prioritize, and organize.
To take this one step further, I use the Tim Ferriss strategy. I define the one item I need to do today, even if nothing else happens.
This creates priorities in my day. I can then begin to do the most important item first, which is probably the most daunting.
Daily Journal Template
Below is my daily journal template. Feel free to join me in daily journaling.
Good luck and good selling!