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Road testing the MiGoals Progress Journal

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I’ve trialled a number of planning journals in the past. None of them really ‘stuck’.

Sometimes the planning system didn’t work for me. Or I didn’t like the physical design. Or both.

But I remain attracted to the idea of finding a planning journal that feels good to use and helps me to focus my efforts, without being complicated.

At the beginning of 2023, I started trialling the MiGoals Progress Journal.

Overall, I’m very happy with it, despite a few minor shortcomings. It has since become my ‘daily driver’.

Read on for my review.

Physical design

  • The Progress Journal comes in hardcover, with a leather-feel material, similar to that found on other popular notebooks and journals (e.g. Moleskine).
  • I have used the black (my preferred colour), navy blue and teal green colours. It also comes in sand, coral and lilac.
  • On the front is a ‘Progress’ logo, the back cover has a ‘MiGoals’ logo. both are embossed/debossed and feel minimalist and refined.
  • The journal is A5 size, which is fine for me to carry around as a stand-alone planning journal. The smaller size (and therefore limited space for notes) means it’s not adequate for me as an all-in-one. I continue to use an XL size (slightly smaller than A4) Moleskine notebook for general note-taking.
  • It has two divider ribbons for bookmarking, which is great – one ribbon is always problematic for me. A minor gripe – I’m not a fan of the ribbon material. I much prefer a woven fabric ribbon, instead of the ‘fabric-look’ that MiGoals have gone with.
  • The paper stock feels good at 100gsm with nicely rounded corners. The paper has a very light grey tone (to my eyes). The colour is good, but I do have a slight preference for the warmer cream-colour of Moleskine’s paper stock.
  • I enjoy the use of some contrast (black) pages within the journal which are great for navigation and (re)finding your current place. These pages include useful quotes and tips.


  • Each journal covers a 90-day period.
  • Some well-designed explanation pages are included, covering how to use the journal, and including some example mock-ups of completed pages.
  • The journal kicks off with a section for quarterly goal setting, then focussing on daily actions and habits to achieve those quarterly goals.
  • Regular review pages to assess progress are included at appropriate intervals (end of 1st week, then monthly).
  • The majority of pages in the journal are for daily planning, tracking and review.
  • The system works well for me overall and I’ve adapted my daily review to work with the journal. The main hack I’ve adopted for this is to label the first two ‘things to do’ on the Progress Journal daily plan as ‘Most Important Thing’ and ‘One Quick Win’.
  • I like the inclusion of a habits section, but wish MiGoals had included room for more than 3 habits. I’m typically tracking 5+ important habits. I understand these choices are a trade-off between form and function, and including more things on the daily planning page risks making it cluttered. I make this work by picking the top 3 habits that I’m currently most focussed on.
  • As mentioned above, I don’t use the daily notes section at all. I do use the review section and find it useful to capture my ‘top three wins’ and rating my day out of 10.

In summary

I’m onto my third Progress journal. This says a lot, given I’ve trialled and abandoned other planning journals.

In short, it’s the combination of good design, with a solid system that makes it a winner for me.

If you’re looking for a system to up your planning game, I can strongly recommend giving it a go.

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