The premiere Korean language company- Talk to Me in Korean- suggests one thing to do to improve the study of Korean- use a journal. This can be applied to learning any language.
They suggest that you write every day in your journal using the language skills that you wish to improve. Use subject matter that is meaningful and important to you and you are more likely to continue the practice. For instance, if you enjoy writing about family or a friends, that is what you write about in the language that you are learning.
Watch the video where a Talk to Me in Korean host explains the method on Youtube: Do This One Thing to Keep Improving Your Korean.
The leader of a Facebook group recently asked a question similar to the following, a question which might be a great journal prompt:
What is something that you have done which would have impressed the you of five years ago?
That’s a mouthful.
This prompt is meant to help you understand the progress you have made in life. Have you done something that five years ago you didn’t expect to have done? Have you accomplished something that, five years ago, seemed out of reach? Have you altered your life in ways that you had not even considered back then?
Contemplate it and record your answers.
This prompt can also be used to get your ideas flowing for what’s next. What might impress you in the next five years?
Ten years ago I would give away paper journals to relatives and friends, hoping they would join me in recording their lives. They often did not take me up on the offer.
Enter the touchscreen phone/smartphone, the tablet, etc. Now they record their lives in more ways than I do, through Facebook, Snapchat, and other applications online.
There are many different ways to journal now, even if people do not call it by that name. I still love my paper journal the best, but I am thrilled that so many people are finding the way that suits them to record their endeavors.
I recently came across a video by online entrepreneur Roberto Blake called, “I’m No Instagram Model, But…”. In it, Blake notes that he had not found a way to use the photo app Instagram in a way that fits his personality. Then, he says,
“I decided to turn Instagram into a public journal where I can express what I’m thinking and feeling as a creative person, as a human. And so I can look back on that myself and know exactly when I felt something, where I was at that time – both geographically at the time and just where I was in my own head.”
He’s journaling on social media! But then again, so are most individuals who are on the app. He’s one of the first people that I’ve heard use the word “journal” to describe what he’s doing with it.
Recording your life and thoughts can be done; sometimes it’s a matter of finding the tools that work for you and your life. Perhaps the journaling tool that best fits your life has not yet been invented. (Perhaps you should invent it.)
If your journal also houses your to-do list, then efficiency in creating those lists is necessary to get the job done.
One of the biggest culprits of to-do list failure, of not achieving the goal, is the tedium of having to write and rewrite your list on tasks to complete on a regular basis. Delay writing burnout by creating templates.
If you know that you will create a to-do list every day or every week in your journal, it might be a good idea to type a list template that you can print and affix to your paper journal.e.g. If you have a weekly to-do list for the foreseeable future that has as its focus Housing goals, Blogging goals, and Financial goals, then type those headings in a simple table, leaving blanks for you to write in the specific goal each week.
If you are using a digital journal for your list, create a to-do list template that you can copy and paste every day or every week.
Continue tweaking your journal and your lists until it fits your life. Pay attention to what fatigues you about your writing and what brings you a sense of well-being.
And remember that what worked for you in a different phase of life might need to be tweaked for your current phase of life.
Use the writing implement or medium that works for you and your journal. If a Visconti Rembrandt fountain pen makes you eager to write, go for that investment. If a store brand pen which you can buy in packs of 50 gets your creative juices flowing (because you’re not worried about someone “borrowing” it), then use that inexpensive pen.
Sometimes you’re not even using a writing implement. There may be times when you glue an image to a page to speak for your mood instead of words.
The pen (or other medium) you should use for the journal is the one that serves you.
Have you written a letter to your future self? Depending on the purpose of your journal, your personal book can serve as an extended letter to self, featuring goals, wishes, your ideology. . . Everything. Anything.
This morning, I read an entry from ten years ago. I was jaded, dejected, and hoped that my older self was having fun.
My younger self had been despondent for months. I do not recall those moments lasting so long, but there they are in black ink (someyimes red ink when feeling particularly dramatic).
I cannot help her now, but I can help someone else who shows similar deviations from their baseline behavior.
These journals help me to be aware of how a person might feel during different phases of life, phases long forgotten.
The journals help to empathise with younger people or those going through the doldrums.
Have you read one of your old journal today? What did you discover in what is, essentially, a letter to yourself ?
When Tim Ferriss mentions his daily writing routine in Tools of Titans, I was intrigued. He calls the routine the 5-Minute Journal.
The 5-Minute Journal is a series of writing prompts that Ferris uses every day – morning and evening- to recall daily highlights and to improve himself for the next day.
These are the 5-Minute Journal Prompts:
- I am grateful for…
- What would make today great?
- Daily Affirmations
- 3 amazing things that happened today
- How could I have made today better?
I have incorporated the 5-Minute Journal Prompts into my daily writing routine for ten days. There is already a weekly goals list incorporated into my journal; I was searching for a way to remind myself daily of the tasks that should be completed by Saturday. The 5-Minute Journal Prompts bend to this purpose.
Early on, I would often write in the Evening Questions section that nothing amazing has happened today. It was then that I realized that I associate the word “amazing” with momentous and often unexpected occasions. I substituted it with the word “awesome,” which I associate with any size event or occurrence. That prompted me to change the wording in other places in the prompts to fit my life and the way that I speak. I would encourage you to do the same.
After a few days, writing the same questions over and over became tedious, so I typed the questions, leaving a space for writing underneath each one. I then printed out a bunch of the pages to glue one every day to my journal. Then I start writing. That has been so much better than handwriting the questions every day.
Of course, if you’re already digital journaling, this series of prompts can more easily fit into your daily writing without so many steps, and without the tedium of writing the same words every day. Just copy and paste.
What do you think of the 5-Minute Journal?