How To Easily Start A Journal + Journal Prompts To Help You Get Started
Don’t underestimate the power of journaling! Writing (sh)it down helps inspire new ideas, opportunities and motivation! So you’re thinking about it… but not sure how to get started or what to write?! You’re at the right place! I’ll explain how to get started journaling and give you 365 journal prompts so you’ll never run out of ideas!
Journaling has so many benefits and can be helpful in nearly every area of your life. Use your journal to set and achieve goals, track healthy habits, write down inspiring ideas or script for the law of attraction!
I recommend my Freedom Journaling Class! You’ll learn exactly how to use journaling for personal and professional success!
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You can start journaling on your laptop, notebook or a beautiful journal! Here’s a few of my favourites:
Journaling helps spark creativity, passion and ideas. So here’s how to get started, today!
- Dust Off Your Pen and Paper – You don’t need anything special to keep a journal; in fact, purists believe that using pen and paper is the best way to journal because you can carry it with you anywhere and you don’t need technology. So, there will be no excuses.
- Do It First Thing in the Morning – Don’t procrastinate about keeping your journal. Honestly, 5 minutes is all you need and you’ll start your day off on a productive and passionate note:) Or you could…
- Do It Last Thing at Night – Mornings not your thing? Another time to do it is before bed. This works especially well for gratitude journals. That way you can go to sleep thinking about all the things you are grateful for instead of things you’re worried about. Here are some great gratitude journal prompts for you!
- Write Every Single Day – Whenever you choose to do it, try to set it up so that it becomes a ritual and a daily habit. Journaling every single day is going to be more effective than just doing it when you feel like it. Plus it gets easier once the habit is established!
- Start Simply – Don’t stress about what you should or shouldn’t be writing. Just write what you feel and working on making it a daily habit. Don’t make it hard – just get going.
- Begin with Today – No excuses! Start right now and write about your day today. That’s the easiest thing to do. What of significance happened today? How did you feel about it? What would you do differently? What would you do the same?
- Try Different Types of Journals – Once you develop the habit, you can start trying different types of journaling like a bullet journal, or a vision journal, or maybe even a project journal for your next project. Here are 11 types of personal development journals to try!
- Keep It Private – Just like when you were a teenager and wanted to hide your latest crush from your big brother… The main thing to remember about your journal is that it should be kept private. The only exception is if you want to share thoughts with a therapist, counselor, or coach. Or if you want to turn it into a book or course, to help someone else overcome whatever you overcame.
Keeping a journal will help you work out life events. When you write it down, you have a better idea of what happened, both the good and bad. This helps you improve your decision-making abilities and ultimately, your life! Things become clearer and easier through journaling! The main thing is just to get started journaling in any way that works for you! There are journal prompts to help with every aspect of your life!
How to Make Your Journaling More Effective
Any type of journal that you keep can be helpful. It doesn’t matter if it’s just to document your life or to work through problems – you can use a journal to do it all. From tracking your projects to documenting vacation to overcoming anxiety, a journal will work for you if you pick the right type and make journaling a ritual.
- Find the Right Medium for You – For some people, that’s pen and paper. Many experts claim that’s the best way because of its simplicity. But always do what works for you so that you want to journal, daily! If you make it too hard or resist, you won’t want to you do it.
- Turn Journaling Daily into a Habit – To be most effective, journaling has to go on for a long time. It’s a long-term strategy to improve your life, which isn’t going to happen overnight. Habits and life changes take time and effort.
- Set Up a Comfy Journaling Spot – Find a good space you can journal in each day. Make it relaxing and cozy. I like to keep my journal beside my bed so I can quickly jot down ideas before bed or when I wake up!
- Choose the Right Style of Journal for Your Needs – The type of journal you want to keep depends on how you plan to use it. You may want to track a project, so you could use a project journal. If you want to simply write about your life, you’d want a classic journal.
- Use Your Journal to Work Through Life and Reach Goals – Don’t just write in the journal; actively seek to improve something in your life – whether it’s the thoughts which drive your feelings or improving your actions so that you experience more success. Journaling sparks interest, passion and motivation! Use it!
- Consider Using More Than Writing About Your Life – You don’t need to just use words. You can use drawings, pictures, tickets, and other memories inside your journal too. Sometimes a few pictures and mementos mean more than anything you can write to help you remember.
- Read and Reflect Occasionally – Take at least a few minutes to re-read parts of your journal. Once you’ve kept it for a year, it’s fun to go back and read the same day from last year to find out what’s different now and what’s the same and why.
If you know why you want to journal, it’ll be easier to figure out which type of journal you need to keep to make your journaling more effective. Sometimes you just want to document your life, while other times you want to work through hard times. It really depends on your goals and the point of the journal
Ten Types of Journals You Can Create
With so many types of journals to choose from, having more than one type of journal might be the best way to keep everything organized better. When you have more than one type of journal, you can simply go to the specific journal to work on one issue at a time or keep something organized so you can make better decisions.
- Bullet Journals – This type of journal is useful for anyone who has lots of to-do lists, loves using a pen and paper, and who enjoys goal tracking. Your journal should have a table of contents that you create as you add to the journal so you can find things. You’ll use symbols, colors, and lines to make your bullet journal. You should be able to understand at a glance what’s on the page.
- Vision Journals – You may have heard of vision boards and this is essentially it, except it’s a journal that helps lead you to your vision. The way it works is that you set up the journal to have only one goal per page. Then you can write words, add pictures, or draw something that enables you to make plans to reach that goal. When you do reach the goal, be sure to go back and add the date of achievement.
- Line a Day Journals – Basically this journal is what it’s called – you write down only one line a day. You will simply write in the journal a short line about what you did that day. It should be only a sentence or two at the most, and should not take up that much space in your journal. Some people like using a calendar and a pen for this.
- Classic Journal – This is simply a diary, and you can write whatever you want in it every day. It can be long, short, or you can skip days if you want to. The classic journal is just like the diary that you maybe kept as a child. You write whatever you want in it daily.
- Prayer Journal – This is a particular type of journal where you essentially act like your diary or journal is your higher power. Write God your prayers instead of saying them. Write them down so you remember them and can look back on them.
- Dream Journal – Some people really like tracking their dreams because they believe that dreams provide signs for life. If you want to track your dreams, you have to train yourself to write in your dream journal every morning while you still remember the dream. Write about the dream and then research what it means and write about that too.
- Food Journal – Write down everything you eat every day. Some people like to include the calorie contents and so forth. It can also help to write down why you eat it, how you felt about eating it, and things like that.
- Travel Journal – A wonderful way to remember your travels is to keep a travel journal. Some people like making one for each trip so that it’s easier to remember. You can write your thoughts in your journal, but you can also attach tickets, pics, and memories.
- Gratitude Journal – This is just what it sounds like. It’s a journal where you record each day what you’re thankful for and grateful for. Nothing can be negative in this journal because it’s designed to help you think more positively.
- Project Journal – This is a handy journal to keep, especially for anyone who regularly works on projects. Keeping a journal of each project you work on that records actions taken, results, and data, will help you improve every project but will also help you look back on this one with excitement.
If you want to journal to help work through a problem, keeping specific journals for different things is an effective way to go about it. It’s also a great way to keep your thoughts and memories for the future in a more organized and useful way!
Not sure what to write? Journal prompts help you spark ideas. Here’s 365 journal prompts, in every category!
365 Journal Prompts
Daily Thoughts and Idea Journal Prompts
1. Are you honest with yourself?
2. If you’re not, how can you change it?
3. Describe your day in bullet points.
4. Talk about what you will be doing this weekend.
5. Are you happy with your current friendships and/or relationships?
6. Do you feel happy with your life right now?
7. What are 3 things you can do this week to help improve your life?
8. What is the number one biggest concern for you?
9. Are you more of a positive or negative person?
10. Why do you think that is?
11. What are your best qualities?
12. What do you think are the best qualities in other people?
13. How can you be a better friend?
14. How can you be a better boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife?
15. What do you believe are some strengths of yours?
16. Do you think you value yourself enough?
17. How can you develop a more positive mindset?
18. What is something you are struggling with?
19. Describe the times when your mind went to negative thoughts today.
20. Is there one specific thing you are trying to work on?
21. Do you believe you are a good person?
22. What was the best part of your day?
23. What is your current morning routine, and how can you improve it?
24. Do you feel happy today?
25. What is a personal goal of yours?
Work and Business Journal Prompts
1. Describe your first job.
2. Are you happy with your current job?
3. What was your dream job when you were a kid?
4. How has that dream job changes as you have gotten older?
5. Where is your career heading?
6. What actions can you take to make that dream a reality?
7. What are some ways you can one day work your dream job?
8. If you are happy at your current company, are there ways to advance?
9. How can you do better in your job to get those promotions?
10. What is your favorite part of your current job?
11. Describe 3 fun memories from your past jobs.
12. Describe 3 work mistakes you have made, and how you can avoid them in the future.
13. Are you trying to start your own business?
14. Describe that business.
15. Start working through a brief business plan for the business.
16. List some actionable tasks for your dream business.
17. List education or classes you need for the business you want to start.
18. Are you happy with how your business did last year?
19. How can you change your mindset to improve it this year?
20. What are some ways you can improve your business TODAY?
Personal Goals and Aspiration Journal Prompts
1. What are some personal goals of yours?
2. Name some actionable steps requires to achieve your goals.
3. What is your 1-year goal?
4. What is your 5-year goal?
5. What is your 10-year goal?
6. Have you thought about your ultimate, long-term personal goal?
7. Who or what do you aspire to be?
8. What is your goal for next week?
9. What are some things you would like to accomplish next month?
10. Do you have some important things to accomplish this year?
11. Do you have a bucket list?
12. If you started a bucket list, what are 10 things you would love to do?
13. Are you where you thought you would be at this age?
14. Who is someone that inspires you?
15. What is a movie you can watch that always cheers you up?
16. Is there a book you always turn to for a certain type of mood?
17. What type of music do you find uplifting?
18. Is there a skill you want to learn?
19. What hobbies would you like to learn how to do?
20. If you could excel at one musical instrument, what would it be?
21. If you could start your life over, would you?
22. What is one thing about your life you would willingly change?
23. What is something that was difficult, but you would never change?
24. What is a mistake today that you believe you learned from?
25. Name something you are proud of today.
Health and Wellness Journal Prompts
1. Write down everything you ate today.
2. Take your weight and measurements and compare in another week.
3. What is something you can do to be physically healthier?
4. Do you feel like you made healthy choices today?
5. How can you be better tomorrow?
6. What is your favorite type of workout?
7. How can you incorporate this workout into your regular schedule?
8. What is a FUN activity that also helps you stay active?
9. Name your all-time favorite food.
10. Is there a way to cook this to be a little healthier? Write about some options.
11. Do you have any fitness goals? List them here.
12. Describe what you need to make your fitness goals a reality.
13. Who would be a good workout buddy for you?
14. How can you schedule in more time for your health and wellness?
15. How do you feel your mental health is?
16. Do you have any mental health disorders?
17. Is anything causing you stress today?
18. Start listing triggers for stress, anxiety, or depression.
19. Eliminate one bad habit, then see how you feel in a week.
20. Keep track of your mental health signs and symptoms for one month.
Family and Friends Journal Prompts
1. Who is your best friend now?
2. Who was your best friend in elementary school?
3. Do you remember your very first friend?
4. Who is someone you used to be friends with, but aren’t any longer?
5. Do you remember why you grew apart?
6. Who is someone from your childhood you would like to find again?
7. If you could talk to one person right now, who would it be?
8. Write a letter to your childhood friend.
9. What is your family life like?
10. Are you happy with your relationships with your family?
11. When was the last time you talked to your mom/dad? (or other parent)
12. Do you have a significant other? Talk about them.
13. Do you have kids? Talk about them.
14. Describe 3 of your kids’ favorite things to do.
15. Talk about a memory between you and a sibling.
16. What is one of your favorite pasttimes with your cousins?
17. Are your grandparents alive? Do you get to visit them often?
18. Who is a distant family member you would love to be with right now?
19. Write a letter to a family member who has passed, who you would love to catch up with.
20. Do you have any family pets?
21. Describe each pet and your favorite thing about them.
22. Are there other pets you would love to get?
23. What is your favorite board game to play with friends?
24. Plan a game night with your family.
25. What is your favorite family activity?
Memory Journal Prompts
1. Do you have one favorite memory from your childhood?
2. What is the very first memory you remember?
3. Do you know what your first words were?
4. What was your first day of school like?
5. Describe what your childhood was like.
6. Draw a picture of how you think your school years went.
7. What is something you are embarrassed about, many years later?
8. Describe a time in your life when you really learned a hard lesson.
9. List your 3 favorite birthday and what make them your favorite.
10. What did you do for your 10th birthday?
11. Did you have a special 16th birthday party?
12. What is a hobby you loved as a kid, but no longer participate in?
13. What was your favorite cartoon?
14. What is a movie you loved watching with your family?
15. Name a memory with your parents.
16. Can you remember the first time you went to the movie theater?
17. How old were you when you drove for the first time?
18. If you could sum up high school with one word, what would it be?
19. Did you attend any high school dances?
20. Are you happy with your life so far?
21. What is an embarrassing moment you would love to re-do?
22. What has been the best part of your life so far?
23. When you want to cheer up, what is one memory that always comes to mind?
24. What is something that is a little fuzzy, and you wish you could remember better?
25. What is a toy you loved as a kid?
Seasonal and Holiday Journal Prompts
1. What is your favorite season?
2. Why do you love this season so much?
3. What weather do you wish it was right now?
4. What is your favorite holiday?
5. Describe a past memory from this holiday.
6. If you could wake up each day and it would be one holiday or season, which would you choose?
7. What is your favorite thing to do in the summer?
8. What do you love about fall?
9. What is something you love doing every winter?
10. In the spring, what part is your favorite?
11. Describe a past Christmas you will never forget.
12. Do you dress up for Halloween?
13. If you used to Trick-or-Treat, tell some memories.
14. How does your family celebrate Thanksgiving?
15. Name 3 holidays you are looking forward to this year.
Self-Care and Self-Improvement Journal Prompts
1. Write a letter to yourself – about the things you LOVE about yourself.
2. List 5 things you can do for yourself today.
3. Come up with 10 things you can do for yourself this month.
4. Spend 5 minutes writing about any subject, using this time to reflect on yourself and your life at the moment.
5. Name a place you would go right now if you could go anywhere.
6. Did you imagine you would be alone, or with someone else?
7. Meditate for 5 minutes, then write about the experience.
8. Take 10 minutes a day to do something all for you, then journal about the experience.
9. What are 7 things that bring you a sense of peace?
10. Who are 5 people that make you feel loved?
11. What is 1 activity that cheers you up, no matter what?
12. What is a compliment you love to get?
13. Have you complimented yourself today?
14. What is your best physical quality?
15. What is your best inner quality?
16. What makes you special?
17. Why do you appreciate yourself and your life?
18. What do you feel you deserve in a romantic partner?
19. What are some words you always try to live by?
20. How can you love yourself more?
21. Describe your perfect day.
22. Delve deeper – who were you with, where did you go, what makes that the perfect day?
23. When do you feel happy in your skin?
24. Ignore your flaws – what is one feature you would NEVER want to change?
25. What is a way you indulge yourself often?
26. How could you indulge a little more?
27. Why do you deserve to love yourself?
28. What is a quote that teaches great self-love and acceptance?
29. What would you tell your teenage self if you could?
30. What is one lesson you can teach a younger you?
Gratitude Journal Prompts
1. What is the ONE thing you are MOST grateful for in your life right now?
2. Name 5 things you are grateful for this week.
3. Who is someone you can’t imagine your life without?
4. What is a way you can show more gratitude every day?
5. Do you feel that you appreciate the good in your life often enough?
6. What is something that made you smile today?
7. Name something surprising that happened to you recently.
8. What is something fun you experienced in the last year?
9. Talk about a challenge you are happy to have overcome.
10. Name someone who has taught you an important life lesson.
11. List 3 things that were difficult to live through, but you are now grateful for the experience.
12. Show how grateful you are for your family.
13. Describe why you are grateful for your pets.
14. Talk about how your job has changed your life.
15. List 5 memories from your childhood you are grateful to have.
Travel Journal Prompts
1. What has been your favorite trip so far?
2. Where would you love to go?
3. Have you been to any of the world’s 7 wonders?
4. What is a monument you want to see.
5. Have you ever seen a waterfall?
6. Have you seen a volcano?
7. Who do you love to travel with?
8. Are you afraid of flying?
9. Do you get seasick?
10. If you could take a cruise anywhere, where would you go?
11. Have you ever flown first-class?
12. When you want to spend a weekend away, where do you like to go?
13. Start a savings tracker for your next trip.
14. Do you ever have to travel for work?
15. What was your least favorite vacation, and how could it have been better?
16. Are you planning another trip right now?
17. What is your method for planning a vacation?
18. Name 5 places you want to see before you die.
19. Do you have a passport?
20. Have you ever been out of the country you live in?
21. Are you a fan of road trips?
22. What is a fun road trip you have been on.
23. Where would you like to take a solo road trip?
24. Name a place you want to see with your significant other.
25. Describe your dream family vacation.
Make a List of… Journal Prompts
1. Your favorite books.
2. Books you want to read.
3. Books on your shelf you haven’t read yet.
4. Your favorite movies.
5. Movies you would love to see.
6. Movies you saw in the theater.
7. Movies that hold special memories for you.
8. Movies that scared you.
9. Movies that always cheer you up.
10. Movies you could quote by heart.
11. TV shows you love to watch.
12. Your all-time favorite shows.
13. TV shows you loved as a teenager.
14. The first show you think of when you imagine your childhood.
15. TV shows you want to catch up on.
16. Your favorite songs.
17. Your favorite soundtracks.
18. Albums you love.
19. Your favorite singers.
20. Your favorite bands.
21. Concerts you have been to.
22. Concerts you want to go to.
23. Daily to-do list
24. Weekly to-do list
25. Monthly to-do list
26. Annual to-do list
27. Past or favorite dreams
28. Wish list
29. Party planning list.
30. Your favorite quotes.
31. Personal affirmations.
32. Hobbies or crafts to learn.
33. Classes you want to take
34. The next steps for your business.
35. Achievements you are proud of.
36. The most important people in your life.
37. Recipes to try.
38. Healthy food to start eating more.
39. Types of exercises you can start doing.
40. Upcoming events
41. Blog posts for your blog
42. Holidays you want to plan
43. Shopping list for yourself
44. Shopping list for the next holiday or birthday.
45. Home improvements you want to make.
Write a letter (that you don’t send) to:
1. Your younger self.
2. A family member who is deceased.
3. A political figure you admire.
4. Someone causing you stress or pain.
5. Your bully from childhood.
6. Your crush.
7. Your significant other.
8. One of your parents (alive or dead)
9. Someone who has made a great impact in your life.
10. Your favorite teacher.
11. Someone who inspires you.
12. Yourself, to read on bad days.
13. Someone who put you through a hard time, but have now learned greatly from it.
14. The person who still brings you grief.
15. A pet you wish you could communicate with.
Creative Writing Prompts
1. Go outside, pick up one object, and write a story about how it got there.
2. Tell a short story about your first crush/first love.
3. Come up with a character for a horror story you would love to write or read. Describe the character in great detail.
4. Think of whether that character was good or evil. Reflect on your choice.
5. Create a mind map for a character in a romantic story.
6. Map out a short story about someone overcoming a physical disability.
7. Story prompt: You wake up in the middle of the night, and none of the lights work. You hear a sound in the attic, but you also hear a sound in the basement. Describe what you do next.
8. Story prompt: You call up your best friend to chat, but he/she doesn’t know who you are. Write a story based on why or how that is.
9. Story prompt: Your main character wakes up in a boat, stranded at sea…
10. Write a poem that rhymes about your weekend plans.
Prompts for Each Calendar Month
1. Write down the biggest thing you want to achieve this year.
2. List 5 goals for January.
3. Describe what you hope to do in the spring.
1. Describe your dream Valentine’s Day date.
2. What are your goals for February?
3. Talk about how your year is going so far.
1. Make a list or schedule for spring cleaning this year.
2. If you could sum up March with any one word or phrase, what would it be?
3. Describe your perfect way to celebrate a holiday this month.
1. Are there any important birthdays or dates to remember in April?
2. Plan out your dream garden.
3. What do you love to do when it rains?
1. You’re almost halfway through the year – how is it going so far?
2. Name one challenge you want to overcome in May.
3. What do you want to do over the summer?
1. If you could trade places with anyone, who would it be?
2. Talk about your June plans and goals.
3. Think of one fear you can try to overcome in June.
1. Plan your dream summer vacation – where would you go?
2. Talk about one of your favorite summer vacations.
3. If you could go back to school in the fall, what would be your major?
1. List 10 affirmations to repeat every day in August.
2. Write a poem or short story that takes place in the fall.
3. What are you looking forward to this month?
1. What are your plans for the fall season?
2. Describe your experiences when you were in college.
3. If you are a parent – what would you love to do with your kids this month?
1. Have you accomplished any goals yet this year?
2. If not, list something you can get done in October.
3. Talk about your favorite Halloween costume for the year.
1. What is your favorite fall treat?
2. Make a memory – show your family your favorite movie, and write about the experience.
3. Discuss 3 things you can do before the year is over.
1. Talk about Christmas or another holiday you celebrate – are you excited? What are your plans?
2. What is your favorite winter activity?
3. Wrap up the year – how did it go?
More Journal Prompts
1. Write down 5 affirmations to get you through the day.
2. Talk about accountability in your life at the moment.
3. Discuss your plans for the upcoming weekend.
4. What is the best book you read this/last year?
5. If you could start a book series over again never having read it before, what would it be?
6. What are some ways you improved in the last year?
7. What are some important lessons you learned?
8. Is there anything keeping you up at night?
9. What have your dreams been like lately? Write down the ones you remember.
10. What do you wish you could dream about tonight?
11. Do you raise your kids differently than you were raised?
12. If you have any family pet right now, what would it be?
13. What are your biggest 3 priorities in life?
14. Are you happy that these are the first priorities that came to mind?
15. What are some of your biggest fears?
16. What fear do you believe is keeping you from achieving your goals?
17. What are some actionable steps you can take to overcome your fears?
18. Create a mind map of what you are dealing with right now.
19. Discuss 3 of your challenges, and 3 resolutions.
20. What is your favorite way to relax?
21. You have been given 3 wishes – what do you do?
22. What if you could have any 5 wishes?
23. Have you ever participated in extreme sports?
24. What is a musical or play you have gone to?
25. Have you ever been to a ballet?
26. What are 3 bad habits you would love to put a stop to?
27. What is your secret, hidden talent?
28. You just won an Oscar (or Emmy) – what is your speech?
29. You are afraid if people knew about this, they wouldn’t accept you. What is it?
30. Add 7 more items to your bucket list.
31. What do you think is your biggest regret?
32. What is something you never told your parents?
33. Think about someone you love – who came to mind? Write about them.
34. Make a list of the 10 best moments of your life.