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In today’s world, certain tools stand out for their versatility and insightful impact on personal growth and skill development. Journaling, a key component of the BE-21-SKILLED toolkit, aligns with the project's mission to integrate 21st-century skills into education. The BE-21-SKILLED project recognises the potential benefits of introducing these skills into STEM curricula. This tool has been designed to guide STEM students how to acquire self-management, purposefulness, and perseverance.

Journaling for self-management

Self-management skills require individuals to act consciously and responsibly, accept feedback, adapt to change, and seek opportunities for personal and professional growth. This comprises traits like self-discipline and a professional attitude (Līce, et al., 2023). Journaling provides the perfect platform for cultivating self-management:
Time management: Through journaling, individuals can develop effective time management skills by setting priorities, allocating time for tasks, and reflecting on their time usage and productivity patterns.
Goal setting: Setting and monitoring goals becomes more achievable through journaling. The act of breaking goals into actionable steps and regularly tracking progress enhances decision-making abilities.
Reflection and self-awareness: Journaling encourages self-awareness by prompting individuals to reflect on their choices, reactions, and outcomes. This fosters a proactive approach to managing tasks and responsibilities.

Journaling for purposefulness

Having a clear sense of purpose is vital for staying motivated and focused on long-term objectives. Purposefulness refers to “the quality of having a sense of direction and a strong motivation to achieve a specific outcome” (Līce, et al., 2023, p. 30). Purposefulness gives life meaning and direction. Journaling plays a vital role in cultivating this sense of purpose by means of:
Clarifying aspirations: Journaling allows individuals to define and articulate their goals and aspirations, particularly relevant for STEM students seeking a clear path.
Self-discovery: Through journaling, students can enhance their self-awareness by reflecting on their strengths, interests, and values. This self-discovery process connects their goals to their larger aspirations.
Organizational skills: Regular reflection and goal setting in journals also help students develop organizational and time management skills.

Journaling for perseverance

Perseverance highlights the capacity to store energy over the long term, conquer obstacles, and maintain a solid commitment to reaching goals (Griban et al., 2020, as cited in Līce et al., 2023). It's a quality that distinguishes those who achieve their goals from those who don't. Journaling is a valuable tool for cultivating perseverance by:
Cultivating a growth mindset: By reflecting on challenges and setbacks in their journals, individuals can cultivate a growth mindset, which is the belief in the capacity to learn and improve through effort.
Resilience building: Documenting strategies used to overcome obstacles in journals strengthens resilience, allowing individuals to better navigate adversity.
Self-motivation: The act of journaling itself can enhance one's ability to self-motivate and stay committed to their goals, even in the face of difficulties.

Journaling is more than just putting pen to paper; it's a journey of self-discovery, growth, and skill development. Whether you're aiming to enhance your self-management, clarify your purpose, or reinforce your perseverance, journaling can be your guiding light. STEM students, educators, and professionals alike can connect the power of journaling with the BE-21-SKILLED project to chart a path to self-management, purposefulness, and perseverance in the 21st century. So, pick up that journal and start writing your way to success in the 21st century, with the support and resources provided by the toolkit of the BE-21-SKILLED project.
The BE-21-SKILLED The BE-21-SKILLED project has become a pillar of cutting-edge educational strategies to develop important skills in STEM students. For more information and access to the tools, visit


Līce, A., Lapiņa, I., Kamola, L., Gaile-Sarkane, E. (2023). European Skills Panorama. Building an Ecosystem for 21st Century Skills Education in STEM. Riga Technical University (RTU). Doi

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