Review: The 6 Minute Diary (theory part) — Dominik Spenst

I’m a huge sucker for productivity enhancers and when I found the 6 Minute Diary, I decided to pick it up and bring it back home. Because the book starts with a theoretical background before you get started, I decided to review the theory part separately from the practical part, which I will review once I’m done with the 22 weeks worth of diary space. So, let’s get started, shall we?

Dominik Spenst is the creator of the 6 Minute Diary. Basically, what this book boils down to is that you spend six minutes on it every day, three minutes in the morning and three in the evening. There’s also weekly questions. Questions that will hopefully give you some insights into yourself, or make you look at things a bit differently. There’s also monthly trackers, where you can rate all different aspects of your life and you can track activities you’re trying to turn into healthy habits! What’s not to love? 🙂

The theory behind the six minute diary

There’s a sixty-six page introduction before you can start using the diary. You don’t necessarily have to read all of it, but it will help you and explain the philosophy, psychology and science behind the book! I have to say, for such a long introduction in order to use a diary so simple, it was kind of a slow start for me, but as I kept reading I became fascinated with how much research has gone into this diary.


The start of your day

Every day you’re given the same page lay-out. When your day starts, you’re supposed to answer a couple of questions:

  1. Name three things you’re grateful for
  2. Write down how you’re going to make this a great day
  3. Write down a positive affirmation

According to the theory starting your day with writing down all of this will trigger your brain to become positively charged to for the day. By being grateful and writing the reasons down, you’ll enhance your own well-being. There’s been tons of research on the subject and this diary is based on a lot of that research.

The end of your day

At the end of the day there’s three more questions the diary asks you:

  1. What good deed did you do today?
  2. How can I improve myself?
  3. Three great things you experienced today

The last part of the day is spent doing a little self-reflection. I really like this, because it forces you to focus on the positive things. If the last thing about your entire day is positive, you’ll sleep better (according to theory).


Weekly and monthly stuff

Besides this, there’s more stuff for you to do with the diary. Weekly challenges and questions, that will hopefully give you a couple of insights into your own psyche. And then there are monthly trackers, where you can rate your personal happiness based on several factors, like work, friends, family, health, etc. There are also monthly trackers if you want to create new good habits. One of mine will be writing daily. Which is something I pretty much do already, but tracking it, will force me to be more conscious about it.

I don’t know about you, but I’m eager to start!

I really appreciate that this book isn’t about pseudoscientifical stuff to empower you with the power of positivity so you can do everything you ever dreamed of, which is how a lot of non-fiction selfhelp stuff is usually written. It’s all based on proper research and a good mix of philosophy and psychology. The list of research material used is quite extensive, given the introduction to this diary is sixty-nine pages long.

I started my first entry today and I’ll be back with a proper review of the practical part of this diary in 22 weeks! 😉 So have a little patience, or if I’ve somehow managed to make you as enthusiastic as I am, try a copy of your own and we can share our experiences!

Happy journaling!


1 reply »

  1. Jeffrey, Ah, so THIS is the “diary” you picked up, Dominik Spenst’s “The 6 Minute Diary.” I think it’s good that the author provided the theoretical background with research, philosophy and psychology behind his approach. It is obvious from the three questions at the start & end of each day that this method is uplifting & positive. Just from the questions no wonder I struggle in life due to my focus on “getting things done” & not being positive, reaching out beyond myself. The weekly & monthly exercises should be eye-opening as well! What I liked very much is your statement, ” If the last thing about your entire day is positive, you’ll sleep better (according to theory).” –Best wishes with this seemingly small regimen which will really add up to quite an accomplishment with all the rest that fills your day & routine!!! –Another well-done “column,” Jeffrey! Phil

    Liked by 2 people

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