Ask the Readers: Are you Self-Confident?

Our success and happiness depends very much on how we view ourselves. You could be the President of Universe, and still be miserable if you think you aren’t good enough. That’s why you often hear stories of super models and famous Hollywood actresses whom the world worships for their beauty, and yet they suffer from low self-esteem because of the way they look or feel.

There are also so many degrees of confidence. You may be completely confident in one thing, but not in something else. But that is about skills and experience. My questions today is about you – you as a person. Not about what you are good at, or what your skills are. It’s about how you feel about your self worth. I see the difference between those who have confidence and those who lack it. It’s all in the attitude.

What do you do when you walk into a room full of strangers? Do you cling to the walls and avoid eye contact? Or do you stride in the middle of the room, as if you have every right to be there?

Self-confidence is not arrogance. Self-confidence comes from inside. When you fully believe in your worth, you don’t sell yourself short. You behave like a person who has a right to exist. You behave like a person who has the right to being in places and talking to interesting people.

Would you describe yourself as a confident person? Or would you say you have low self-confidence?

 

ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY:

Please share your answer in the comments, with as much or as little detail as you like. Are you self-confident? If you don’t want to share your answers in the comments, you can email me at dolly [at] kaizenjournaling [dot] com.

 

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77 Reasons Why You Should Keep A Journal + Free Guide with 101 Journaling Prompts

Do you keep a journal? Have you ever wanted to? Maybe you do keep one, but it doesn’t really have a purpose. With this post, I aim to show you a wide range of things that you could use your journal for.

But before we get into that, I want to make something clear. Journaling is only a medium. It’s a method with which you can take control of your development, and of your life. But no development exercises are any good without application.

Journaling will give you clarity. It will give you answers. It will even show you the way. But once you have all of that, or better yet, while you are in the process of gaining that, you need to get off your behind, and DO THE WORK.

You need to apply everything you learn. You need to use it. Kaizen Journaling is not just about writing things down, and then forgetting about them. Kaizen Journaling is about living a Kaizen Life, and that comes from application.

I’m not going to just give you the reasons for why you should journal and leave you hanging at that. At the end of this post, you will also get a Free 8 pages long Guide with 101 Journaling Prompts that will keep you occupied, and let you experiment with many different reasons for using your journal.

Now that I’ve clarified that, let’s dive into all the reasons why you should keep a journal. This list is by no means exhaustive. If you think of more reasons, please share them in the comments.

77 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD KEEP A JOURNAL 

  1. Discover your ambitions
  2. Plan your goals
  3. Find your strengths
  4. Find your weaknesses
  5. Prioritise your actions
  6. Create your Ideal Life Vision
  7. Measure your productivity
  8. Evaluate your progress
  9. See how your goals change over time
  10. Form your success support group
  11. Consider your skills and resources
  12. Leave your legacy
  13. Make a personalised gift
  14. Create a keepsake for your children
  15. Vent your frustrations
  16. Improve your writing
  17. Increase confidence
  18. Map your career
  19. Create a business plan
  20. Develop your writing voice
  21. Find your passions
  22. Follow your dreams
  23. Keep a character journal (for your fictional characters)
  24. Write fan fiction
  25. Visualise your future
  26. Dig deeper into your past
  27. Face your demons
  28. Free therapist
  29. Develop your character
  30. Improve your observation skills
  31. Discover your favourites
  32. Record your daily life
  33. Get insights on people in your life
  34. Improve your people watching skills
  35. Improve your hand-writing
  36. Make decisions
  37. Fuel your dreams
  38. Reading logs
  39. Improve critique skills
  40. Record your dreams
  41. Do tarot readings
  42. Take a spiritual journey
  43. Gain self-awareness
  44. Objectively learn what you like about yourself
  45. Objectively learn what you don’t like about yourself
  46. Self-education
  47. Action plan for personal development
  48. Implement new habits
  49. Track your diet
  50. Embrace who you are
  51. Discover your values
  52. Learn from your mentors and heroes
  53. Record the good things in your life
  54. Increase your positivity
  55. Follow your principles
  56. Create a memory book
  57. Make a family project
  58. Write letters
  59. Have conversations with people you wish you’d met
  60. Remember your childhood
  61. Imagine your future
  62. Record inspiring quotes
  63. Face your fears
  64. Search through your emotional history
  65. Write poems & songs
  66. Talk to your favourite characters
  67. Draw
  68. Collage
  69. Discover your most productive times
  70. Discover your self-defeting behaviours
  71. Gain clarity
  72. Discover thought patterns that have you trapped
  73. Go to your happy place
  74. Learn a language
  75. Be unashaemdly you
  76. Then strive to be the best version of you
  77. Live a Kaizen Life

To download your FREE 8 Pages long PDF GUIDE with 101 journaling prompts, please subscribe below. If you are already a subscriber, don’t worry you won’t be double subscribed. Just enter the same email address again, and you’ll be taken straight to the download page.

 









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Ask the Readers: Are you a Coffee Person or a Tea Person?

Today’s question is for two reasons. One, because I would love to get to know you, my readers, and what better question than to start with what would you like to drink? Nope. No beer!

Second reason, as always goes back to journaling, which I am going to explain at the end.

I love, love, love coffee. Seriously. I’ve such strong psychological feelings towards coffee that I associate a cup of coffee with relaxing, with happiness, with time to work, with time to read, and with a whole lot more. I like all kinds of coffee, fancy and instant, though Starbucks Cappuccino is my regular favourite at all times.

I used to drink tea when I was younger. I grew up drinking it. But since my Italian boss introduced me to coffee during a summer job in high school, I switched camps. Now tea actually makes me feel sick.

What about you? Are you a tea drinker or a coffee drinker? 

ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY:

  1. Leave a comment (come on, even if you never leave one, do this one. Tea or coffee? It’s pretty easy)
  2. Journal about this. You saw my comment. Go back to your preference. How does your favourite drink make you feel? What do you associate it with? What emotions? What memories? Do you have a favourite brand? Do you have a favourite location? Who introduced you to your first cup of tea/coffee? How do you feel when you travel and can’t get your preferred brand?

 

 

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Hand-written Journaling versus E-Journaling

 

NOTE: All images in this post are from my personal journals.

I’d always intended to do this post, because this is the question that always comes up when I talk about journaling. It’s the same sort of debate as e-books versus paper books. A comment from a reader on the previous post bumped this up the schedule, and I decided to do this post straight away.

Amit said,

Hm… I actually use my computer for my journaling. My computer it a literal bio-electric extension of my body. I can type 500 times faster than I can write. Is it bad that I don’t use paper and pencil, or is personal preference the important thing?

 

I gave him a short answer in the comment, but now I’m going to go into detail and explain my position on this.

First, let’s begin with rules. There is only one rule in journaling. You can tell what’s coming, right?

Yup! The rule is: There are no rules.

Journaling is a personal process. It’s an extension of our personality, and our lives. It’s a tool for our growth, and so each of our journals are as unique as us. Even if you and I sat down together, followed exactly the same prompts or guidelines for a week, wrote about the same topic, and followed the same format, our journals would still be different. That’s why I never tell anyone what their journaling should be like. It has to be whatever you want it to be.

But saying that, I’m here to share my experience and knowledge, and also to give my opinions. (Hey, it’s no fun being neutral)

E-Journaling

It’s definitely on the rise. People who avoided journaling before for various reasons – such as bad hand-writing, too slow, didn’t want to carry a journal around – started trying journaling apps, or even just keeping it in MS Word or equivalent.

Now, with mobile phones and tablets being mainstream, and majority of us having one tool or another on the go, e-journaling has become even easier.

Another key consideration is that for a lot of people, myself included, typing is a lot faster than writing by hand.  If you have bad hand-writing, e-journaling is tidier. Less chances of spelling mistakes too, especially if you are a perfectionist.

I definitely can see its advantages, and one of the biggest ones is convenience. Logically, e-journaling is a very useful way to do it in this day and age.

Logically….but if we only followed logic, we would miss out on so many things.

Hand-written journaling

All my journals are hand-written. I’ve tried e-journaling, but it doesn’t work for me. This is the method I strongly advocate, and for several reasons.

The physical journal.

For me, selecting a journal I like is an emotional experience. I know that whatever I write in it is going to be important to me. These are the things I dwell on. That’s why what I mentioned about quality in the previous post is important. These days, it’s not so much selecting, as purchasing. I have tried many journals, and I still have some brand new ones that I haven’t used because they are too pretty, and I’ve got particular milestones for them. Plain moleskine is my favourite. I also like Paperblanks, as a chance from moleskine.

The act of writing.

This is where the goldmine is. I actually believe that the process of writing by hand makes a difference. It’s slower than you can type, but that means that you are connecting more with your words. I personally find that if I write something down by hand, it makes a far stronger impression on me. Of course this could be just a personality thing, but I’ve always found things easier to remember, understand or assimilate if I wrote them down.

I feel there is something special about seeing your thoughts in your own writing. It’s another way of personalising your journals. It makes them even more uniquely yours. There is the smell and feel and texture associated with each journal. Your handwriting also shows evidence of your mood, and your state of mind. Usually, my writing is neat. But sometimes, I’m either too upset, or in such a rush to get words out that it’s a mess. Sometimes, I feel like using different coloured pens, and sometimes, an entire journal is in same black ink. Sometimes, I put stickers or drawings or little memorabilia in my journals. Sometimes, I’ve post-it index sticking out of pages.

All of these, puts a stamp of my personality on it, which I don’t think e-journaling can achieve.

I’m totally a gadget girl. I love computers, and I have more than what one normal being should want or need. I love my Blackberry. I like finding nifty apps. And if I don’t talk myself out of buying a tablet, that’s going to be the next thing. The lure of gadgets…it’s stronger than buying clothes. So when I tell you that it’s not technophobia that’s keeping me from e-journaling, you can believe it’s the truth.

It comes back to what I have said before. Journaling, for me, is not just about recording my day-to-day life, or about achieving one thing. Journaling is a part of who I am and a part of my life, and so I want my journals to reflect that.

ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY:

If you haven’t tried hand-written journaling or if you haven’t tried it for a long time, give it a go. Just try it for a week. See if it achieves more result for you. You can always return to e-journaling.

 

 

Why You Should Always Use Quality Journals

Journaling is more than just putting words on paper. It is more than a jumble of notes. It’s a record of your life. It’s progress of your dreams. It’s a journey of self-awareness and growth. It is a medium through which you understand otherwise incomprehensible patterns and emotions.

So a cheap notebook, with crappy pages isn’t going to cut it.

Does that mean you should spend a fortune on buying that perfect leather bound notebook? Well, only if you are loaded. But for the rest of us regular people, with regular income and expenses and pennies to watch, there are other affordable, quality solutions. You can get quality notebooks and journals for reasonable prices, and while I’m all-in support for physical bookshops and stationery shops, if you are watching the spend, you are likely to find them cheaper on Amazon.

3 Reasons Why You Should Use Quality Journals

Quality enforces the feeling of importance and specialness.

Using super cheap notebooks might make you feel that your life isn’t worth recording. On the other hand, extremely beautiful journals intimidates some people, as if they don’t want to ruin it with their ordinary thoughts.

It’s all subjective, but I recommend going for something that’s good quality and functional. It depends on what works for you. Leather bindings, classic moleskines, pretty designs it’s all fine. Quality is what’s important. Treat your journal as a valuable object, which is going to be a storage medium for your most private thoughts. Pick something that you would enjoy writing in, even look forward to it.

Acid free pages preserve better

You are going to keep your journals, possibly re-read them, and even make notes in them at a later date. If you are keeping your journals to leave behind, even after you die, as a legacy for your children, then it’s entirely possible that someone might be reading them decades after your death. Writing fades less quickly on acid free pages, and the pages don’t yellow as quickly as cheap paper either.

Good binding keeps it together

You may move house with these journals, maybe even move countries. At the very least, they are going to be knocking around the house. If you do re-read your journals, then you will be handling them quite a lot over the years. Good binding is like a human spine. Without it, the whole structure falls apart. Good quality journals, especially the ones that can lay flat, are the easiest to use and also survive better.

ACTION YOU CAN TAKE TODAY: 

If you have already used journals, take a look at what you have. Are there any that you particularly liked? Consider if you like using the same kind of journal every time, or whether you prefer variety. If you’ve only ever used cheap journals, get a new quality one, and trial it out.

 

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