If you are not already doing so, I highly encourage you to start keeping a Leadership Journal. I have been keeping one for many years and I have found it to be invaluable in many ways.
I have been fortunate enough to sit in on presentations from very high-ranking Generals and Admirals during my time in the Army, from the United States Military and Foreign Militaries as well. I have also had the opportunity to learn from Presidents of Universities and from college level coaches. One of the main ways I have used this journal over the years is to capture key notes and ideas these people have passed along in their leadership lectures and presentations. Never pass up an opportunity to capture the gems these leaders are trying to pass along to you. You cannot trust your memory, so take notes and then transcribe those notes into your journal.
Another way I used my Leadership Journal is to capture outstanding leadership ideas and decisions that I may have wanted to use later in my career. When a leader who I worked for would make a great decision or come up for a great idea I would capture it and put it in my Leadership Journal. I also recorded poor leadership examples. It is important to remember things you never want to do as well!
When I read a book, I always take notes. I used to write those notes in the margin of my books. However, I quickly realized that was not a good idea. First, the chances of you going back and looking at individual books (if you can even remember which book you wrote something in) is slim to none. Besides the fact that I like to share my books with others. The people I share the book with do not necessarily need to see the notes I wrote. Therefore, I decided years ago to put the key notes on leadership issues and ideas in my Leadership Journal.
The last way I use this valuable journal is to include leadership quotes that I collect from reading, from articles, from blogs, etc. You can never have too many quotes to draw from! This ensures that all your leadership quotes are in one place and are easy to find.
Although I use an actual notebook for my journal, and actually write in the notebook. Most young people today would probably prefer to keep their Leadership Journal on the computer. To be honest if I was starting a Leadership Journal today I would probably prefer that as well.
Whatever method you decide to use, the computer or an actual notebook, you will find yourself going back to it often to draw on all those great ideas and quotes you have collected over the years. I hope you start your Leadership Journal TODAY!