Improve your productivity with Self Journal

Written by on 26th June 2017

An honest review of the Self Journal

I’m a huge advocate of Journaling as it is a great habit for increasing your productivity and collecting your thoughts, I have used several strategies and types of journals over the years, they include the bullet journal system which I love and the Business Planner from Daily Greatness.

A few months ago I started using a journal by Best Self called the Self Journal and after using it as my journal over the last few months, I thought I would review it.  My aim is to help you make a decision if you are looking for a new journal or taking it up for the first time.

Mobile Business

Size and weight need to be considered when looking at a planner or journal especially if you’re out and about like I am. The last thing I want is to be carrying around a bulky book with me; I want something small and compact.

The Self Journal delivers just that it is a lovely size, similar to a moleskin. Within the pages I can access and create all my key information for achieving my goals, creating new habits and recording highlights of my day.

Craftsmanship

This may not bother some of you, but for me the feel and look of my journals are important, it contains my thoughts, concerns, successes and yep failures, it is the navigation tool for my success, and it should be respected accordingly. Every journal I use such as my business playbook or my brain dump journal has a distinct look and feel.

The Self Journal is built to last; I mentioned in the review video that it reminds me of an old novel made to stand the test of time like history is being written when I use it.

When writing in some of my journals in the past, I have been frustrated by the poor quality paper, because as I wrote with my roller ball, the paper would soak the ink more like blotting paper, but I have not found this to be the case with the Self Journal.

If you need a bookmark then have no fear this journal has more tassels than a Morris dancer outfit, so you will never go short, and they are different colours to make it easier to remember which one means what.

Structure

I have to admit when I first got this journal I didn’t like the format as it only has 13 weeks, I initially felt cheated knowing that I was going to have to buy four journals over the next 12 months.

After some reviewing of my productivity habits and planning strategies as well coincidentally reading an excellent book by Brian P. Moran and Michael Lennington called the Twelve Week Year, I happily adopted the plan and had thoroughly embraced the concept.

The 13-week outline helped me reduce the overwhelm and assisted me in focusing on three core outcomes over the next few months, the results for me have been staggering.

There are three key areas in the Self Journal, the monthly calendar which of course in this journal is only three months it gives you a great perspective of what is going on. The weekly tracker which allows you to give yourself a weekly review as well as an area to track active habit building endeavours. The final part which is the journal section where you can record appointments, wins and notes as well as other parts which I will discuss further on in this post.

A Coach in a Book
I’ve been a coach for over a decade, and as well as working with clients I of course practice what I preach and work on myself, some of the habits and strategies I teach are presented brilliantly in this journal here are some of the key features for me.

  • Core Outcome Focus – This journal helps you understand that focusing on fewer big goals is going to dramatically increase your chances of success, by reducing that limiting feeling of overwhelm you can concentrate on three core goals or outcomes over the upcoming months, then assist you to break them down into more manageable smaller goals and identifying what needs to be done will massively increase your chances of success.
  • Commitment – Do you have the desire to succeed in life and not create a series of excuses then commit yourself you creating a contract of commitment for some can be beneficial, this is a great standard to live by and by taking that responsibility to commit to your daily tasks and signing your name to it, can be powerful but when you can then share it with others it takes accountability to the next level, yep the Journal has a commitment statement for you to write and sign.
  • Reflection – Over the years after recovering from my illness and getting my life back on track I came to realise the importance of reflection, this journal offers so many ways for you to reflect on different things. Record your successes and win, this is something I don’t feel people do enough, Review what you learnt from your mistakes or your wins, look at your progress and identify what needs to be done to move your closer to your goals, do you need to develop better habits, well start recording them and finally but by no means least and this is a huge thing I have found over the years record what you are grateful for.

Conclusion
This is one of the best journals I have used; it will not be for everyone, in fact, there are some downfalls that should be considered. If you want to free write then personally, I would look at the bullet system, although there are free writing spaces and pages in the journal you might find you run out and I use a moleskin for my free writing. Some of you may think it is expensive well compared to a note book yes and you will have to purchase four over the year so be aware of that. It is probably not for you if you don’t like the old school approach of paper and pen, but sometimes it can help you get clarity.

This journal is well built, containers most of the important things I feel you need to build your success and it forces you to break your year down into more bite size pieces, from the moment you get this product in the post you can see that the designers have taken time and thought about it with care, the presentation of the box when it is delivered, the additions you get like the pen loop and the wall planner that it comes with as well.

I would love to know what you look for in a journal and how has it helped your success?


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