A few months ago I attended the ACS Webinar, “No Mentor Available? Mentor Yourself”. After attending this webinar, my take-home message was the importance of keeping a journal. I used to keep daily journals for most of my life, but one day I stopped. This webinar gave me the push I needed to start daily journaling again. Specifically, journaling for self-mentoring. Self-mentoring is not as complicated as it may seem. If you want to find out more about self-mentoring check out the Science Mentor’s Blog. This blog has many resources for early career scientists. If you want to find out more about this webinar or upcoming webinars check out the ACS Webinars site.
When you decide to start journaling for self-mentoring you want to make sure you are committed. Whether you are a student or working in your field as a scientist, keeping a journal will help you stay on track. Journals are a good way to track your career progress and reflect on the past.
In comparison to a To-Do-List, a journal can provide a way for you to see what you did exactly at each point in time and examine the outcome, good or bad. Think of your journal as a meeting with the CEO. When you self-mentor you are your own CEO. You are the person that is planning your future, making changes and taking action. If you keep a detailed journal you can avoid making the same mistakes over and over. If something does not work, troubleshoot and find a solution. If something works reward yourself and realize that you are one step closer to achieving your career goals.
Starting a journal is the first part of self-mentoring. Will you start keeping a journal? Comment below.