In January, I decided that it was time for me to get my life together. I had spent the last couple of months being, in no short terms, an absolute wreck. I couldn’t sleep, I drank more than ever I had, all of my relationships – romantic and platonic – suffered, and I could barely function enough to try to earn my Masters degree.
At the time, my partner was super into Impact Theory (and its founder, Tom Bilyeu). So naturally, when I said that I wanted to get a planner so that I could see my achievements, he gently suggested that I pick up the Impact Journal. I can’t thank him enough for it, and I would recommend this journal to anyone and everyone who has ever considered journaling or intensive planning. My Impact Journal has truly helped me in my quest to get my life together, and here are five reasons why:
It helps you track your habits.
Honestly, I am one of those people who would forget their own head if it wasn’t on tightly. I use my habit tracker for keeping track of my smoking patterns (We’re all constantly trying to quit, right?) but I also use it to keep a track on whether I’ve eaten three meals per day, made my bed, and actually read something. It’s been significantly easier to keep track of my habits with a visual representation in front of me instead of relying on memory, especially when it’s before 9 am, and I can barely remember my own name.
It doesn’t just rely on yearly goals.
On January 1st, it’s all well and good to promise ourselves that we’re going to achieve our goals this year, but by the middle of the year, we usually realize that we haven’t followed through. Owning a journal that has monthly spreads has allowed me to create defined, actionable steps towards my goals on a month-by-month basis. Once December arrives, I’ll be able to look back on just how much my journal helped me accomplish this year.
It keeps you focused on the positive.
The Impact Journal contains a page at the end of each month dedicated to your successes and failures. If you’re naturally pessimistic, this section forces you to look on the bright side, which stops you from hyper-focusing on what you didn’t achieve that month. It will teach you to take a step back and realize that even if your month didn’t go as you had planned it, you still were able to achieve important steps towards your goals.
It’s more than just a checklist.
Some days, you just want to vent or rave, and having a checklist won’t cut it. Journaling not only affords you the ability to organise, and plan, but also to record your struggles and successes. Whether you look back to see how far you’ve come or remember your favorite moments of the year, keeping an Impact Journal will help you celebrate your wins and see how far you’ve come.
It is a tangible object.
The fact that my journal is non-electronic has been the most instrumental in my quest to get my life together. With a paper journal, I can’t simply dismiss the habits I’m tracking or the tasks that I’d like to accomplish. You can’t just avoid your journal because you don’t want to look at it. Your journal is not going to run out of battery in the middle of the day either, which holds you accountable for filling it out on a regular basis.
Keeping a journal has benefitted me both in my personal and academic lives because it has brought structure back into my days. Most of all, though, journaling has helped me maintain control at a time when I felt like my life was falling apart. So, if you’re struggling to balance out your priorities and track your habits, keep a journal.You just may find that journaling will change your life.