Today I… read this article and thought it was interesting.
I have pasted the link to the original article which contains the links to the research here:
This 15-Minute Activity Will Make You More Successful At Work | Inc.com.
I have copied parts of the text below
According to a new working paper from Harvard Business School, setting aside 15 minutes to write at the end of the workday is enough to make you better at your job.
“When people have the opportunity to reflect, they experience a boost in self-efficacy,” says HBS professor Francesca Gino. “They feel more confident that they can achieve things. As a result, they put more effort into what they’re doing and what they learn.”
In a series of laboratory and field experiments, Gino and her colleagues found that reflection leads to better performance.
The researchers put new employees into groups where people either reflected on their days or didn’t. In the reflection group, employees were given a paper journal and asked to spend 15 minutes at the end of their workdays writing about what went well that day, which they did for 10 days. The result: The journaling employees had 22.8% higher performance than the control group.
That daily routine is easy to replicate. It’s just a matter of making an appointment with yourself to reflect on the day’s successes so you can incorporate those lessons into the next day.
Take the extra step and write it down –research shows that writing about your life experiences has loads of positive effects, including increasing student’s grade point averages, re-employment after losing a job, and improving memory. This is because writing helps “codify” the things you’ve gone through, Gino says.
“It’s very easy to deceive yourself if you’re just thinking about it,” she adds, but when you write things down on paper, it’s easier to identify what’s helpful.”
This struck a chord with me and I related it to my blogging process- I sit down in the evening and think about my day and what I am going to write about in my daily blog.
The words that stuck out for me in this article were “more confident” “boost in self-efficacy” and noting “what went well”. Instead of dwelling on what went wrong, we should celebrate our successes, however small and insignificant they may seem at the time. I came home grumbling tonight that I’d had a bad day, frustrated and tired because events (other people) beyond my control caused a delay. On reflection: I worked hard this week, I completed the tasks I was responsible for, I did the best job I could. Was there anything I could have done differently- sure! Next time I will give an earlier deadline/ chase it up sooner/ do it myself.
I don’t write about work as a rule, but it is a big part of my life and takes up a lot of my time. [I am an editorial assistant for a publishing company- we produce a range of trade magazines] Since I started blogging every day, about the same time as I started my new job, I feel more confident about writing and I am sure I write more efficiently and productively at work. Obviously, I have gained a bit of experience over the last few months and I have been taught to do my job but I think the 365 blog project has really helped with my self-belief. Because my work writing is fact based and formal style I deliberately keep my blog light hearted and informal- it’s supposed to be FUN.
So, I will take a few minutes to think about and scribble down what went well each day- not just work but life- interaction with a colleague, lunch with a friend, something growing in the garden, a phone call with my kids, a book I read, a tasty dinner, a cuddle on the sofa while I talk about my day. I will share my notes here- and maybe you, dear reader, will share some of yours with me.
Here’s a random photo of my shoes, just because they make me smile.