The New York Times* called journaling “one of the more effective acts of self-care” and a “panacea for modern life”. Why? Because journaling is about reflecting on and processing personal experience. It’s about putting words to what you are thinking and feeling - making sense of things and, where necessary, getting rid of negative feelings or anxiety. For most people, the best way this is done is by writing with pen to paper in a notebook or journal. At Notebook Mentor, we call this reflective practice.
A wide range of methods
Some people like to keep a diary to journal on everyday experiences. However, journaling isn’t limited to this. You may journal in an unstructured way (a stream of consciousness) on a single topic that has been nagging or puzzling you. Perhaps you like to journal about your goals and dreams. There is no limitation or rule when it comes to journaling – it’s about what works for you, what makes you feel content, or what helps boost your mood. In the main, journaling requires more mindfulness and organisation than simply writing lists or putting together a plan of action.
What is career journaling?
Career journaling is a new and growing concept. Its purpose, like other forms of journaling, is to help your mind process experience – in this instance, about things associated with work and career. Given the amount of time many of us spend at work, it’s unsurprising that there are literally thousands of career experiences worth journaling about! For example, you might want to understand why a relationship at work feels draining or difficult. Perhaps you are struggling with your self-confidence and want to work out what’s going on and how to fix it. You might be new to managing people and want to mindfully reflect on the type of leader you want to be. Whatever the topic, creating a narrative in your head and latterly on paper, not only allows you to make sense of things, it gives you a safe space in which to experiment with ideas and find the right language to communicate your creativity.
Try the Notebook Mentor method
Notebook Mentor brings a particular approach to career journaling. Our notebooks combine expert advice on key topics, with structured journaling questions and challenges. We pose journaling questions to help you look at topics from a broad range of perspectives – providing plenty of journaling space (including a 40-page blank notebook at the end of each of our journals). Not only can you read thought-leadership commentary, you are encouraged to pause, and be mindful and curious about your situation. We love blended learning – meaning we also encourage you to talk about what you journal, if that’s something you feel comfortable doing.
The science suggests that journaling is good for your mood, your memory, self-confidence and emotional wellbeing. That being the case it’s also likely to help you relax, sleep better and build a stronger immune system.
As the New York Times concluded, it’s not only an act of self-care, it’s “one of the cheapest” too. So, why not give it a go?
On the whole, daydreaming is normal, necessary and dare we say, rather fun! If you want to get to know yourself better, understanding your dreams, fears, ambitions and goals, there’s no better place to start!