The magic of journaling

Last week I “graduated” from my 3-month diet experience. Since Christmas, my husband and I have focused on a high-protein, low carb diet. I lost 26 pounds, he lost 55! 

A large part of our success was “journaling” everything we consumed. Sometimes, I would think, “If I eat that, I have to write it down.  So, do I really want it?” At the end of each week, our coach could point out WHY we were successful, and where the slip-ups occurred. In the process, we learned a LOT about healthy eating and moderation. We came to conclusions about eating strategies that work – and they are different for each of us. 

In your Job Search of Career Change, journaling can provide magic results, as well. If you have suffered a Job Loss, journaling is the quickest way to heal and move forward. Here are some tips: 

1.    Write long and hard about your upset. Therapists often ask they clients to write, in detail, the circumstances around their upset. Whether you use a journal, or wear out the keyboard by pounding on it, this is a very useful practice. When you are done, find an understanding friend who is willing to listen. Set a timer and talk through your loss for at least 10 minutes, complete with expletives and exaggerations. Then, do it TWO more times. After telling your story in this way, even you will be tired of the story, and ready to change the narrative.

2.    Write what you have gained. In any bad experience, there are things to be gained. It could be a new self-awareness, freedom, wisdom, or just insights about situations to avoid in the future. It could be that the “job from hell” has given you new, marketable skills you can take to your next position. By making a list of what you’ve learned, you start to create more positive stories. You will need these when you interview and are asked about your last position! 

3.    Track new insights about yourself. If you complete a career assessment, write your reactions to the results. Start to identify your top skills, and work them into your LinkedIn Summary and cover letters. 

4.    Use a spreadsheet to track Job Seeking activities. The spreadsheet can tell you when you applied, which version of your resume you sent, the job title, and to whom you submitted the resume. It can track your HR contact at each company. You can also have pages for networking contacts, job advocates, referral sources, and interviews.  It’s great to have all your activity in one place. If you would like to see my Career Passion® Job Log, just ask for it.

5.    Record and nurture new people you meet. Networking during the job hunt takes on a new meaning. Carefully collect names and details and nurture the relationships you make during your hunt. A new contact may not have any ideas today, but will think of you 6 weeks from now. Networking only works if you stay in touch and keep that new flame of friendship alive.

6.    Congratulate yourself on activity. We all know that not all activity is productive, but any activity helps you feel more positive and upbeat.  At the end of each week, look over your activities and give yourself a big pat on the back.
During this process, it helps to have an accountability partner or a Career Coach. I’m here for you.
On your side,

Catherine Jewell
Career Passion® Coach

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