A quick story:
The hardest part of my journaling journey was when I tried to mimic every single technique I learned on YouTube or Medium -- all at once.
Think The Bullet Journal Method.
So 👏🏻 many 👏🏻 "rules!" 👏🏻
And even more elaborate Instagram and YouTube Bullet Journal designs.
Ryder Carroll, author of The Bullet Journal Method insists that there's no right or wrong way to keep a bullet journal.
Except I didn't listen. I tried to be EXACT in my execution. Even tried a couple of fancy decorations and failed miserably.
Instead of finding a tool to calm anxiety, the stress of duplicating the work of other people increased stress and anxiety! DOH!
Then, I started paying attention to my now-friend Matt Ragland's methods for managing his time & projects in a notebook.
He taught me duplicating anyone else's practice is an exercise in futility.
What matters is "practice." As in:
- Do the work.
- Discover what you need >
- THEN look for ways to solve for your personal X.
I don't want this to happen to you -- especially with the reflection practices you learn from me.
Even as you continue to learn specific atomic prompts, be creative. Adapt what you're learning. Apply to your own situation.
A Self-Accountability Framework
My favorite self-accountability framework is what I call "bookend questions."
Early in the day (or the previous evening) I set an intention.
At the end of the day, I ask myself to reflect on and review how well I did or did not meet the intention.
A couple of my favorite bookend prompts.
Morning: How will you achieve your minimum daily step count, Tracy?
Evening: Did you reach or exceed your daily step count? If not, why not?
Behavioral or mindset accountability
Morning: Do you see something on your agenda that might be a rage trigger? If so, how will you manage your behavior?
Evening: How well did you manage your emotions and your behavior today, Tracy? Share a victory or write about an unpleasant incident.
- List a thing or three about yourself that frustrates you at the end of every day.
- Brainstorm a handful of bookend questions that might improve your self-accountability.
- Choose 1 & implement it.
- Reply to this email with your implementation idea.
Next week, you'll learn:
- health benefits of laughter
- list-making prompts that identify sources of laughter
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Previous installments of this series
PART 2: Adjusting Your Expectations