Reflection aka Inspect and Adapt 2019

Journaling has become a vital part to me since 2013. As every year in between the years I use the time to reflect what happened in 2019.

When doing my yearly reflection & planning I thought it might be worth sharing experiences and write about it. I did this last year too, see here if you are interested: Retrospective 2018 – about Learning and Journaling

Why journaling? Because I believe in writing with pen and paper is more connected to the human brain and helps to escape the daily digital rat race. I love the statement of the bullet journal page:

The Analog Method for the Digital Age

Bullet Journal

This post only focusses on my evolution in journaling.

Improvements this year

I love my day and evening routine and changed into a more time driven format.

Weekly view and hours by Leuchtturm 1917

Reconstructing your day

Ideas why to do this, are “reconstructing the day” method. It’s to walk through you day mentally, write it down and find out where you spend your time. It gives me a new view and visualization of the whole week, especially the weekends. I do have time to add further notes and observations to my day.

Planning your day, week or month

Another advantage is planning upfront using to write down your schedule or make time if needed. It is very comparable to the weekly view in your Google or Outlook calendar which makes it easier for me to consolidate different views and bring them together.

Reflection and rapid logging

The calendar view is perfect for daily and weekly reflections. I see everything at a glance, can add my observations and emotions into the notes and take action about them if needed. For everything I encounter I use the rapid logging method from Bullet Journal.

New questions and routines

One of the major learning last year was “asking better questions”. I’ve read multiple books about it and tried to add questions into my routines. Therefore, I created now two, which are used in various journals. Feel free to download, credits to Brendon Burchard and his High Performance Planner and the The Six Minute Diary.

In addition to the yearly review, I bought new card decks for asking better questions.

Example of the future cards of the Edison Deck by

Nevertheless, I collect my favorite questions in various sources, might be worth a new post.

Goal(s) for the next 13 weeks

The idea to set goals for the year or a shorter period started longer ago, something I’m lacking years for now due to the anxiety to miss them. This year I had the courage to create and work toward them. I saw this idea in the SELF Journal and took it from there. It gives me a new direction as I take actions based on the yearly observations. So, I try to shrink down the time periods into quarterly reflection & plannings. Let’s see how it works out. I may write about it again if of any interest. 🙂

Life and the long run

Last year I encountered a funny exercise where you have to chronicle your private and work life moments into a graph with values from -10 to +10 over the years (a minus ten is e.g. death of a parent, child and plus ten e.g. the birth of your child).

Example to chronicle your life into a graph with all events that happened

Once you mark your events a good question is about the future.

“Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what they can do in ten years.”

Bill Gates

This quote and the exercise made me think about time and decades as 2020 started. This is the direction I’m heading for: long term views and decisions are the sustainable ones.

Especially in the speed-output-delivery-driven IT and software economy, this is my value I long for.



P.S. Tools I use for journaling and maybe worth a look if you are interested.

Feel free to search by yourself:

  • Weekly Planner by Leuchtturm 1917
  • PITT artist pens black by Faber Castell
  • Textliner 38 multiple colors by Faber Castell
  • The six minute diary by UrBestSelf
  • Card decks by
  • SELF Journal by
  • Bullet Journal by Ryder Carroll
  • Klarheit by HalloKlarheit
  • High Performance Planner by Brendon Burchard

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