The Importance of Journaling Your Steps On The Road To Building Your Solo/Small Firm Practice

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Is this the year you consider rezooming your legal career? One thing you may want to do to facilitate the rezooming journey is to keep a journal. Why would you want to keep a journal? There are practical reasons and unexpected bonuses.

The three practical reasons to keep a rezooming journal are:

  1. Record the places you go, the people you meet and the experiences you have. It is engaging.
  2. Reflect your joys and struggles with yourself and the process. It is grounding.
  3. Dream and capture each new idea you have. It is up-lifting.

To help in the Record, Reflect and Dream process the following 7 questions will spur your writing:

  1. What happened?
  2. How you experienced it?
  3. What they mean on your journey?
  4. What you learned?
  5. Who you met?
  6. What are your new hopes and dreams?
  7. How did it strengthen your resolve to rezoom?

By recording, reflecting and dreaming on/about these experiences daily you will gain valuable insight into:

  • Who you are.
  • Who you are becoming.
  • Who you would like to be while rezooming your legal career.

Each observation and subsequent understanding of your reaction will make you a stronger rezoomer. It will enable you to maintain your purpose in rezooming while adjusting your plans. It enables you to make the most of unexpected opportunities to assist your rezooming efforts.

At the end of each week take 20 minutes to skim what you have written with a highlighting pen. Highlight the wins and things you said that were brilliant! If you have not kept up with your journaling ask yourself why? It is meant to be a chronological ledger of your commitment to the rezooming process, the why/how of rezooming your career. Why weren’t you able to take 20 minutes at the beginning or end of your day to reflect on how/what you did on your quest? Did you take the time necessary to focus on the process of rezooming your legal career or were you scattered and diffused? Maybe that is why you feel so frustrated and overwhelmed by the thought of rezooming.

If you kept your journal listing what you learned about yourself, your process, the people you met and the direction you are going/taking to achieve your desired end, clarity will be your friend. At the end of each month you should reflect on the highlighted parts of your journal. This refocus and review is very powerful as you traverse the year. You can do a lot with what you learn this day/week/month/year about yourself.

What are the two unseen benefits of keeping this journal?

Book or Blog:

You have generated a piece of your practice that you didn’t even know you were creating at the time. A How To Guide to master the art of rezooming a legal career. People who are thinking about rezooming their legal career (or any career) will be grateful to read how someone overcame their fear and rejoin the legal profession. It all starts with 20 minutes a day taken to record, reflect and dream in writing. At the end of the year you will have collected in one place all the things you completed, skipped or believe you will complete later. You can take all this information, acquired through your own personal experience, and put it into a book, outlining what you experienced on your own rezooming journey – year one. You can also use the information to start writing a blog about your adventure.


The journal is a gift you give yourself. Why a gift? It chronicles the yearlong journey you took, on your own, to resume your career. If nothing else, it will provide you with a grounding look at just how far you have come, how much doubt you had in your ability to get here and all the things that have gone right! It will show you how much courage and determination you had to reach where you are right now. I love reading my own journals which record, reflect and dream on/about the changes I made in my plans, the zigzags and complete course corrections I made.

My journal tells me things I didn’t remember, things I could not have imagined happening or helps me vividly re-live those things that shifted my direction and plans on how and where I wanted to go. It reflects how I always stayed true to my desire and purpose. I kept my mantra but the journey to implement these core ideas and processes has expanded and changed way beyond my wildest dreams and imagination. If I hadn’t kept a journal I would never have been able to look back and see where I started, reflect on how far I have come, appreciate my purpose and focused on the outcome. If I’d never written down my dreams, thoughts and my aspirations I might have lost my way.

In this new year, as you think about or continue rezooming your legal career, consider starting a journal. You don’t have to write for hours, simply jot down your purpose and what you did to achieve that purpose for 20 minutes. Record, reflect and dream where you see yourself now and where you would love to be at the end of 2016. Remember to look at the glass as half-full while you write. This will create a solid grounding for the next step of rezooming your legal career. Now get out there and rezoom.

All opinions, advice, and experiences of guest bloggers/columnists are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions, practices or experiences of Solo Practice University®.

This entry was posted in Guest Bloggers, Inspiration and tagged Debra Vey Voda Hamilton. Bookmark the permalink.

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