Winter 2004, CSE 403 - Software Engineering


Keeping a journal of things important to you is an effective way to learn about what is going on for you and the world around you, and to create new possibilities for your future. All the experts I know use journals, and speak very highly of them. It is a simple technique. Even five minutes a day can make a big difference over the long run.

Here are our four journaling rules:

You can write about what you are working on, your design ideas, your estimated and actual effort for tasks, personal items, people that are enlightening or frustrating you, embarrassing moments you don't want to re-live, things you want but can't figure out how to get, successes you have had, etc. Writing often clarifies things. Simply recording data often changes your behavior. Looking back over data allows you to see patterns.

Why won't we let you use an electronic journal for this? While electronic journals are great for searching, easy to publish, and often a good way to write longer items, they are not as simple and versatile for documenting your thoughts. Here are some of the reason why: