Take a Step Back

Workplace Interior Designer, journal to reflect

We’re all juggling so many things; work, family, friends, life. And with everything that’s happening right now we feel less and less sure about our future. Lost economic confidence. Job insecurity. Will we be able to see loved ones next week, next month? When something goes wrong, is it a hiccup or blip? Or does it feel like a disaster, a crisis? If so, it’s time to take a step back

Easier Said Than Done

The more we have to deal with, the harder it becomes to deal with it all. It seems obvious, but it’s worth reminding ourselves of this. All we should do is slow down, take a breath, take a step back. Easy, right? Well, easier said than done! We need a way of creating a break in our hectic lives. An activity that makes us slow down, take a breath, take a step back. By writing a journal, you can create that space, that moment to stop

Why Writing a Journal Works

The journal is a mainstay of coaches, mentors, counsellors everywhere. Why? Because it’s a tool that really, really works. Despite is almost universal success, its use is often met with resistance. Maybe because we lack confidence in our creative writing. Maybe we have dim memories of Adrian Mole’s adolescent frailties and fantasies being embarrassingly exposed. Maybe we just don’t have the time

Why writing a journal slows our spinning heads:

  • They create a break, a few minutes, every day, where we step off the hamster wheel
  • Thoughts whizz through our mind much quicker than we can write (or type). The mere act of getting the words down slows our spinning head
  • It gives us the chance to vent, get it all off our chest
  • We can look back on what’s happened. This is the real power of a journal. We see what we’ve dealt with, how we dealt with it. We see we’ve done it all before. We know we can do it again. We learned something along the way. We will do it better next time
Getting Started

Start small, see where your journal journey takes you. Here’s how to begin:

  • Chose your journal: paper; a simple notebook, customised diary, or digital; basic note taking tool which comes as standard with your device, a bespoke app or even a blog
  • Block out 5 minutes a day to fill out your journal. This is important. This is how we create the break. Choose a time and stick to it: at the end of the working day, before dinner, after the kids have gone to bed. For those working from home, it’s a great way to create a boundary between home and the ‘office’
  • Write down what’s happened in the day, how you felt about it, how you managed it. Don’t think too much, get it down; acronyms, abbreviations, scribbles are all great
  • Block out 10 minutes at the start or end of the week. Go through the last few entries. What have you overcome? What have you learned? Write down these realisations. Move into the next week stronger, calmer, ready to face the next challenge

To address our concerns; our writing ability, our secrets being exposed, not enough time. The beauty of a journal is that the author is also the reader. Unless you choose otherwise, it’s just for you. If there is something you want to keep to yourself, then leave it out. Writing down something is much better than writing nothing. As for time, 45 minutes a week. It’s not just a small price to pay. It’s an amazing investment in you

It Takes Just One Step Back

With so much to do, so much bad news, it’s easy for our heads to spin. And a spinning head is no help when we’re already in a tough situation. It becomes harder and harder to concentrate, we make more mistakes, we lose perspective. Anger and panic start to creep in. And then comes stress. The great news is, it takes just one step to slow our racing minds and get hold of it all again; start a journal

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