The Power of a One-Sentence Journal

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Posted December 3, 2012 by Marcy Twete in On the Ladder

We’ve told you about happiness expert Gretchen Rubin before on Career Girl Network. Her work on the concepts behind happiness, specifically for women, are revolutionary, and her ability to convey the most important happiness concepts in a clear and digestible way for all of us is inspiring.

A recent article Gretchen wrote pointed to a practice of hers dating back to 2007, one I had never heard before and blew my mind – the one-sentence journal. Journaling is hard for many women, but it’s something that shows up in every self-help or thought-provoking article about self-care and leadership. Some say we should journal about what happened in our day, others recommend gratitude journals, and some have specific tactics to plan the next day in the form of journaling. No matter the tactic you take, journaling inevitably takes time and effort in your day, something that easily gets thrown to the wayside for an episode of The Daily Show or just being too tired.

Gretchen Rubin’s “one sentence journal” is the easiest option for journaling you’ll ever find. Gretchen says,

Keeping this journal is a project that adds to my happiness in all of these ways: it helps keep happy memories vivid (because I’m much more inclined to write about happy events than unhappy events); it gives me a reason to thinking lovingly about my family; it’s manageable, so it doesn’t make me feel burdened; it makes me feel like a good mother who is passing happy memories along to my children; and it gives me a feeling of accomplishment and progress.

Start your own one-sentence journal today. Because, truly, when you look back at your days, one by one, isn’t there just one thing that sticks out more than anything? Write that thing down, and you’ll have a year’s full of memories to sustain you!


About the Author

Marcy Twete

Marcy Twete is the author of "You Know Everybody! A Career Girl’s Guide to Building a Network That Works" and a career expert who believes in order to be empowered in your career, you must be surrounded with resources and a network that both supports and challenges you. Marcy began her own networking journey as a professional fundraiser in the nonprofit industry, honed those skills as a fundraising consultant, and in 2012 networked her way to nearly 1 million readers as the CEO of the professional development website Career Girl Network.

2 Comments


  1.  
    Ana P

    I did that! Throughout 2012, I wrote every day one sentence describing the day, one good thing (to be grateful), one bad thing and one solution (to understand that the worse problem of the day is not that big).

    It has been working, at least, it makes me think. Next year I want to add “Something new”, so I can learn every day and know that…

    Has anyone else did something like this?




  2.  

    I am a little late in commenting, but instituted this habit in June 2012 and it changed a lot for me last year. I use a free service called Gratitude160 and I reply to an email every day with the one thing I am grateful for that day. The emails get stored on a password protected site I can use to review and reflect on. I really found something different to be grateful for every day since I started and that changed my perspective on so much and allowed me to focus on what’s important in my work and personal life.





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