Keeping a journal may sound like an old fashion idea, but, in my opinion, it is one of the best ways to really get to know yourself. First, let me say that a Business Life Journal is not a diary. The journal I am speaking about is a teaching tool, a way to learn from your own experiences.
Use your journal to “think on paper” about what is happening in your business life. Write down your experiences, what you learned from a book or a seminar, or the results of actions you have taken.
Unlike the BizQuack Idea Book which I recommended you keep close to you and jot down ideas as they come to you, journaling requires quiet think time. I believe that a 20 to 30 minute alone time is necessary to fully reflect on your current situation, actions, decisions you made and the results. Like any other habit, consistency will make it a reality. Pick a time and place for journaling and don’t let anything interfere. I recommend sometime in the evening, perhaps just before you go to bed.
The BizQuack Accountability Tracker uses a daily, goal based, action system, to help you reach your vision. Your journal is a place to write down what you think will happen as a result of your daily actions. By going back and reviewing your actions and expectations it will help you discover what you are doing right and what you are doing wrong. It points out your weaknesses and strengths so you can make adjustments.
There is no right or wrong way to post in your journal. The key is to write down not only what happened but also your feelings about the results of your actions and people you encountered during the day. For example, was that networking meeting a worthwhile endeavor? What did you learn?
As a mentor to small business owners, I find that reviewing a journal together with a business owner is a good way to learn and gain insights that may otherwise have been forgotten.
Nothing is instantaneous. Update your journal daily and review it with your mentor, hopefully on a weekly basis. I know that after 90 days you will have a better understanding of yourself and your business as well as positive improvements in your bottom line.
Tips & Advice by Nick Petra, CFP – Founder of Strategic Duck and BizQuack
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