The Freedom Journal claims that it will help you accomplish your goals in 100 days. I bought one and tested it out. Here are my thoughts.
Before we get into the details of what the journal is, who it is for, and how it should be used, let’s first take a step back and understand a little more about how the journal came to be.
The Freedom Journal started as a kickstarter project from John Lee Dumas’s team at Entrepreneur On Fire.
It raised over $453,000 as was successfully funded by 7,000+ backers.
This means you can go directly to the Freedom Journal’s website and order.
(if you act now you can get free shipping, which is nice because it cost me nearly $20 bucks when I purchased my two books).
This review will cover
- SMART goals
- 10 day sprints
- Who this journal WOULDN’T benefit
- Who this journal would benefit
- Where to get your copy (w/ FREE shipping
What are SMART goals?
You may already be familiar with SMART goals as they are not a new concept. SMART goals are a way to set a goal with a very specific objective. Often times a goal will fail to be complete due to the lack of clarity. SMART stands for:
- Specific – target a specific area for improvement.
- Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress.
- Attainable – specify who will do it.
- Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved, given available resources.
- Timely – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.
What are some common examples of good SMART goals?
Honestly, the hardest part of this process was selecting a goal that met all of the above criteria.
Some common SMART goals are
- Training for a marathon
- Writing a book
- Learning how to code
- Becoming a better parent
- Learning a new language
- Creating a blog
- Starting a new gym routine
- Waking up early to accomplish something like reading, writing, cooking, meal prep, etc
If we selected the training for a marathon goal from our list and filled it out, it would look something like this.
- Specific – get in shape so I can run 26.2 miles
- Measurable – be able to increase the distance I can run week over week.
- Attainable – I will be the one accomplishing this goal.
- Realistic – I currently run 5 miles a day. I should be able to add on a mile each week to get comfortable going longer distances.
- Timely – the marathon I signed up for is 4 months away so I have 120 days to accomplish this goal.
As you can see there are some goals that aren’t big enough in scope to fit these requirements and as such, the Freedom Journal, isn’t the best tool for the job.
So what do you do after you have a SMART goal picked out? You sprint of course
Life is a journey, but you should sprint to your goals
The idea of sprinting is fairly common in life and business goal planning these days. Entire framework’s like SCRUM revolve around the idea of putting your goal into short, achievable goals.
It is something I highly recommend since setting goals isn’t for everyone.
Each week the Freedom Journal has you write down 3 goals that you will focus on for the next 10 days. This is the basis for your sprint.
Every morning and evening you write what you did to accomplish those 3 goals.
Of course the 3 goals need to lead up to your ultimate goal.
Keeping our example from above, if your goal were to increase the amount of miles you ran everyday, 3 goals could be
- Walk an extra 2 miles after running my daily 5 miles
- Buy new shoes that are comfortable to keep me motivated and take care of my body
- Find a fitness app that tracks my pace and distance so I can use data to fuel my success
It might seem redundant to write about these same goals for 10 days. But the more you think about your goals, write about your goals, and struggle to reach your goals, the more impactful this journal will be for you.
The biggest thing this journal offers is accountability.
I found that I would struggle to articulate what I had done to reach my goal when I was writing in the evenings. The truth was, I was faking it. I was trying to come up with things. It helped me hold myself more accountable and realize that is journal will only help me as much as the effort I was willing to put in.
Which brings us to who will this journal help.
Don’t buy The Freedom Journal if…
If you think this is some magic framework that will make you less lazy, more productive, and a better productivity hacker, then you will likely be disappointed.
The Freedom Journal does WORK.
But it only works as you work. What I mean by that is if you commit to setting a goal, sticking to the goal, and keeping track of your progress, then The Freedom Journal will be an invaluable tool.
One feature of the journal that often gets overlooked is it’s permanence. 2 years down the road you can reflect on a time in your life when you were trying to accomplish a goal. To me that is awesome and worth the cost of the book alone (assuming you acheive your goal.)
A quick note: even if you fail to reach your goal, this journal will show you where you faltering on your path. Consider that when buying this book. If you only make it 5 days and give up…what does that tell you about your goal?
I think I have made my point clear as to who wouldn’t benefit from this journal. If you do a 180, chances are good that this journal is for you.
Is The Freedom Journal right for me?
If you are goal oriented, already have a goal but suck at follow through, want more accountability, or write daily already, this journal is for you.
The morning and evening questions take about 5 minutes to fill out.
What takes more time/brain power is forcing yourself to do it.
Humans love the path of least resistance. So put this journal by your nightstand and write in it daily.
If you are on the fence about buying The Freedom Journal….BUY IT…here is why
Filling out the chapters, or not, is almost as rewarding as accomplishing your goal.
If you buy the book and complete it and complete the goal…thumbs up to you.
If you buy the book, fail to fill it out and accomplish your goal…thumbs up to you as well.
But if you buy the book, fail to fill it out and fail to reach your goal, then you will at least know some of your weaknesses as it comes to follow through.
So give it a try. What do you have to loose besides a couple bucks?
Finally, where do you get one of these things?
As mentioned above, John Lee Dumas, founder of Entrepreneur On Fire, and his team are the ones behind The Freedom Journal.