Journaling, routine and setting your day up for success
We’ve all heard it before, routine is everything. When something becomes so natural you don’t have to think about it or exert any effort to achieve it, you’ve got more time and mind space to go above and beyond your goals.
Journaling is one of those habits we wholeheartedly believe is essential to incorporate into your daily morning and evening routines. We aren’t talking about the kind of journal you or your best friend kept in primary school talking about your crush. We are talking about a place you dedicate to writing down your goals, intentions, tasks and reflect on the life around you.
Journaling can be used as the warming up and cooling down procedure for our brains. It awakens the reticular activating system (RAS) within our brain first thing of the day. At the end of the day it provides us the ability to reflect on what we have just experienced.
The reticular activating system (RAS) is the part of the brain that filters all of the unnecessary information and highlights all of the positive, recurring thoughts. It’s the phenomenon that occurs when you buy a car that is blue and a Toyota, then all of a sudden you start seeing the streets full of blue Toyota’s. This is where our RAS has kicked in. When journaling we can use it to our advantage. By starting our day with journaling we can trick our brains into highlighting all of the positive things we want for the day, filtering out the negative stuff we might normally be exposed to.
Finishing our day off with journaling gives us the time to reflect on what went well and what we could improve on for the next day. By giving our brains the feedback for improvement is vital for living a more positive life. Ensuring that we end the day with a positive action will also help us to sleep better, which is another blog on its own.
Journaling creates a diary for ourselves and gives us the ability to look back at previous inserts so that we may use that information to improve certain areas in our lives. Information that we were journaling a year ago can provide us important details of what we were trying to achieve and how we are tracking. We might find that if we are still writing down the same goals from a year ago then we are effectively still the same person, just 1 year older. Is that where we really want to be? The same person? No improvement whatsoever? If we haven’t changed as a person over a 365 day period than what are we working towards? Understanding your past through journaling can help you evolve into the person you want to be.
Practising gratitude daily through journaling also opens up the mind’s ability to look and listen for the positive. With practise, daily gratitude lists change and develop and new things to be grateful for will come to light. Seeing the day more positively? That’s an easy win.
Here are a few of the journals we’ve tried and love.
The 5 Minute Journal.
The Self Journal.
The Self Journal is more focused on goal setting and routine. It allows you to set weekly and daily goals, and reflect on them. Also encourages morning and evening gratitude.
Do you journal? What format do you use? Let us know in the comments below!