Michelle Bowditch shares her top picks for tools and apps to help you create your “brag book”
Whether we are looking for success in our finances, health, relationships, work or personal growth, we need to remain focused on the steps in the journey. Success doesn’t happen overnight – it isn’t one perfect moment but a series of small wins and big wins that get us there one step at a time. If we focus solely on the ending, we miss all the beautiful, messy, wondrous bits in the middle.
“Success means doing the best we can with what we have. Success is the doing, not the getting, in the trying, not the triumph.”Zig Ziglar
It can be hard to notice the small wins we experience along the way, as the journey to our big picture of success is often gradual.
The Brag Book
I’ve found that a “brag book” is a great tool to have in my admin toolkit as a means for reflecting on and celebrating all my achievements or moments to be proud of. Personally, my brag book is a continual record of my development and growth. The general rule of thumb is to include anything you can think of that makes you look good and helps to communicate your unique value proposition.
You might like to include one or all the below ideas in your brag book:
- Performance reviews from current/former employers
- Awards/Rewards letters (official recognition of doing a good job)
- Congratulatory notes (anything that compliments you on doing a great job from employers, co-workers, or customers)
- Client testimonials
- Certificates of completion for career-relevant educational courses, workshops, seminars
- Copies of industry-related articles you’ve written
- Writing and design samples (sales/marketing collateral you’ve helped develop)
- Specific accomplishments that are not on your résumé
- Events you have spoken at
- Projects you were involved in
Perhaps you were fearful of making a connection with someone in a senior position and finally made that call and had a conversation. Maybe you presented an idea to your boss that was well received and taken on. Perhaps you had a significant client win or simply integrated a new tech tool into your daily operations. These are all achievements you should brag about! Go out there and celebrate YOU!
Tools for Your Brag Book Creation
Set up a “Brag Book” list in Trello and keep cards for different areas of bragging rights. You can use the checklist function to note down (and then tick off) the goals you achieve throughout your success journey.
For those who like a visually pleasing representation of achievements, why not leverage the design capabilities of Canva? It is a simple-to-use program giving you the ability to add links, images, videos and text.
Quick and accessible, Evernote is the note-taking app you can take everywhere. Scan documents, save webpages and connect it to your calendar for a comprehensive brag book system.
This is more than a diary or journal; you can keep track of your achievements, add photos, graph your moods and revisit previous triumphs.
However you choose to present it, I want you to remember that your brag book is about you and for you. It must contain small wins, big wins and those pat-yourself-on-the-back moments.
You don’t have to be great to start, but you must start to be great.