Hello, and welcome to the Leadership Done Right Podcast, Episode 69: 5 Reasons Why You Should Keep a Leadership Journal.
Hi friends! Several years ago I started writing in a journal. I wrote about what happened each day and what my thoughts were on that event. I tried to keep each day to about one page, but if something exciting happened sometimes it went longer. Also, if I was really busy, sometimes it was less. Since that time I have continued keeping a journal through the years.
In the leadership realm, there’s a lot of great people that talk about the importance of writing in a journal. From my experience, I agree wholeheartedly that there are benefits to writing in a journal!
What is a Leadership Journal?
I am going to share five reasons why you should keep a leadership journal. But before I get to that, it is important to understand what a leadership journal is and how it differs from other journals.
In a regular journal, you write your thoughts about whatever is going on in life, lessons you learn, people you interact with, and a wide range of other things. You can really just write about whatever you want.
A leadership journal is similar, but different. The leadership journal is much more focused that a normal journal. A leadership journal focuses on leadership. It can include situations and experiences you have gone through and the leadership lessons by going through them. You can also write down tips and tricks you learn as you progress on your leadership journey. Another thing I like to include are interactions I’ve had with others and how I have learned from them. That’s not an all inclusive list, but what’s key is that is focuses on leadership.
5 Reasons Why You Should Keep a Leadership Journal
Writing your thoughts in a journal, helps in the following ways:
1. Clarify Your Thoughts
Whether you are flustered, frustrated, confused, angry or just have a lot on your mind, writing in a journal can be very beneficial. When writing in a leadership journal, focus on writing the leadership thoughts on your mind without regard to editing or making it clear and concise. Let your thoughts flow freely. That helps clarify your thoughts and feelings because of the experience of writing it on paper.
2. Know Yourself Better
Writing in a journal regularly helps you gain a better understanding of the leadership experiences that makes you happy and/or frustrated. You learn more about your strengths and weaknesses. You also learn what situations bring out your best and worst.
3. Reduce Stress
Writing about your happy, sad, good, bad, painful, and other emotions helps to release those strong feelings. As a leader, you will go through challenges so writing them down will help you release your pent up feelings. That helps you to feel more at peace with those feelings.
4. Solve Problems More Effectively
The normal problem-solving approach is to think using your analytical brain. When you think that way, it is harder to think of creative solutions. However, when you write freely without editing, you are able to use all parts of your brain. That allows you to use both your creative and analytical parts to come up with more creative solutions.
5. Resolve Disagreements with Others
Whenever I think of journaling I am reminded of what Abraham Lincoln said. He explained that whenever he would go through a rough situation with others, he would write down all his thoughts as if he was writing a letter to that other person. When he was done, he would burn the letter in the fire and that would allow him to release his feelings of anger and move forward.
By writing in your leadership journal about conflicts with the desire to understand all points of view, you are able to better understand what others are feeling. That allows you to get past the disagreements more quickly and look towards a solution that meets everyone’s needs.
Just as a quick recap, the reasons for writing in a leadership journal are:
- Clarify Your Thoughts
- Know Yourself Better
- Reduce Stress
- Solve Problems More Effectively
- Resolve Disagreements with Others
I hope that if you don’t write in a leadership journal already, this episode provides a little encouragement for you to start!
Thank you for listening to the Leadership Done Right podcast. You can check out the show notes for this episode at LeadershipDoneRight.com/PodcastEpisode69/.
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Thanks again for listening! My goal is to help you become a great leader, now go be the best leader you can be!
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