These are a collection of powerful introspection and journaling practices I use constantly, and I hope they help you if you want to start or enhance your journaling practice. As with anything, feel free to take what resonates, and leave the rest.
My Weekly Reflection Template
At the start of the week, I set intentions (ex: do 1 thing that scares me, finish 1 book), then I reflect at the end of the week by asking myself these questions:
- What were my wins?
- What am I grateful for?
- What’s not working and why?
- What am I avoiding?
- What will I do differently next week?
Questions 1 and 2 get me in a good mindset before diving into the harder questions (3-5) that really challenge me to improve my approach and stay focused on progress towards longer-term projects.
The Five Whys
In order to understand the cause of my behavior or feelings, I ask myself why I behaved or felt a certain way at least five times until the root cause is revealed. This often helps me diffuse an intense feeling so I can figure out how I can address it. The Five Whys technique isn’t typically used for this, but I find it to be really helpful, personally. It is commonly covered in introductions to Lean Six Sigma if you’re curious about processes related to enterprise manufacturing.