Why You Should Keep A Personal Development Log

Picture this.

You’re about to have a meeting about any one of the following:

  • End of year review
  • General catch up with your line manager
  • Going for the promotion
  • Your personal growth

You are asked to explain what you have achieved this year or over the past few months.

You stop and think.

I know I have done loads of things, but I can’t quite remember the details….

You try and explain a few things off the top of your head.

You stumble around…

Conversations might go on.. or even worse, they stop. You walk out of the meeting and you feel and know you could have done better…

I have experienced these meetings and outcomes in the past and been left frustrated.

If something above resonates with you then hopefully this blog post could help.

The Development Log

After feeling a bit hopeless and lost from these failed meetings, I wondered if their was anything I could do to help. That’s when somebody introduced me to a development log.

The idea is simple.

Anytime you do something you think is valuable or useful write it down (online is best as you have access to it anywhere).

You will want to capture a few things in your log:

1. Title (What is it)
2. Description (Give your future self a break, help them remember)
3. The Date
4. The business value (optional)

I have found these four areas key when capturing items in your log. The first three are pretty straightforward, but the fourth thing really can really shine.

Having a list of things you achieved over time is great but if you can add the business value that they added, that stuff can be gold dust.

From past experience this log has helped me get a great sense of growth, mastery and numerous promotions.

Next, write these four headings down in a table.

Now you’re ready to go.

Capturing Items

Every-time something comes up you think is worth capturing, write it down.

After a few weeks, you might have a couple of things in your development log.

After a few months, you start to get more in your development log.

After a year you have pages of content in your development log.

Those odd few minutes you spent writing things down has just given you a powerful tool for your next meeting

Lets rewind and go back to the start….

Now picture this.

You’re about to have a meeting about either of the following:

  • End of year review
  • General catch up with your line manager
  • Going for the promotion
  • Your personal growth

You are asked to explain what you have achieved this year or over the past few months.

The difference is now your prepared.

You have months or even a year’s worth of achievements written down in your log and even better the value they add to the business.

Each item in your log is a great conversation starter and things you should be proud of. Own your development and be proud of what you do.

Talk about what you have done and you personally should reflect on what you have done.

Now when you walk away from your meeting you hopefully feel more organised and happy with the outcome. (vs not having a log)

And who knows you might have even get that promotion…🙏

Thank You for Reading

In this blog post, I’m talking from my experience, and how the development log continues to help my career and also my personal growth. I have also had great experiences sharing this idea with others around me on the team and watched them succeed.

Please be open-minded and give it a go.

If you have any questions or comments feel free to contact me I would love to hear your experience.

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Music Loving 🎹, Father 👨‍👩‍👦‍👦, In with ❤️ JavaScript 🐱.

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