How to Double Entry: Using a journal as an alternative


How’s your New Year coming up? We hope you haven’t fallen off track, already, less than a week in. I bet one of your resolutions is to commit to writing a journal; or something similar. Not a bad idea at all.

I’m not sure about all those therapeutic payoffs people say preparing a journal will bring to you. But I can figure it will help you become disciplined, build your vocabulary, organise your thoughts or come up with great ideas. Another thing is that venting in your journal will be way better than holding grudges or ranting at people’s faces (don’t do that).

Whether you wanna do this, is your choice. Even in business, whether you want to prepare a journal it’s you who will decide. Nobody will compel you to be better. Yeah, there is another type of journal prepared in business.

This particular business record should probably become your favorite day-to-day bookkeeping activity. Why? A journal can be used as the space where you record your immediate business transactions. It can also be the secondary book you transfer information to when your head is cooled down. Full package.

If you have no clue what we are talking about, it’s okay. We’ve been going on about your fundamental financial records:

Why you need to know about double entry

How to record your cash sales and purchases

How to record your credit sales and purchases

If these are bad all your financial records are bad. It’s hard work since they must be prepared regularly but so simple that you’ll do them yourself and save on hiring.

On a journal, you’re able to put down transactions as they happen. And at the same time, you get to indicate the debit and credit effect as is done on the ledger (we’ll do them soon). This means you’ll do less work when it comes to going over your ledgers – which are basically your master documents. For your eyes only (and maybe banks, saccos, investors, partner, etc.).

Alternatively, you can transfer information from your cash book and day book to the journal. Therefore, you won’t really need to prepare ledgers since the journal will be your master document. But, do you.

It’s 2019. So, you can find different templates of journals online (if you prefer semesters and exams, you can go that route). And have them on a free spreadsheet software. The only catch is that some of the templates can be complicated, the opposite of business. Piecing together the simplest possible templates, we can do that.

Today, not even piecing together. YouTube has come to the rescue. This is just one of the ways to use your internet productively. Check out this simple “How to Prepare a Journal Video.” It won’t even take 9 minutes of your time:


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