Oh my word it is flipping freezing down here. I know there is all kinds of freaky weather going on around the world so I can hardly complain but phew…someone left the fridge door open because it’s winter all over again. The good thing about bad weather is that it gives you plenty of time to do cozy in-doorsy things. My very favourite in-doorsy activity is writing. Long before my blog came to be, I was scribbling away in flowery notebooks. I am a big believer in the power of words and I think journaling is an excellent way of using words to heal. It’s like self-therapy.
But the thing with journaling, probably something that’s goes through your mind every time you pick up the pen and try to write is it’s tricky to know where to start.
How do you even journal? What should you write about?
I’ve been there. I know it can feel awkward and clompy writing down your thoughts at first so I thought I’d help you out. I’m going share just a few of my favourite journaling prompts to get you started.
5 journaling prompts for when you have no idea what to write about:
It’s so simple you don’t really need me to tell you it but sometimes to get writing you’ve just got to start.
So do it. Grab a pen and start writing. Dump every single thought that you have onto the page. Don’t pause to think whether it sounds silly or makes any sense whatsoever. For once in your life grammar, spelling and handwriting are not important (go on, live a little.)
Some people like to set a timer and stop after awhile but I say just go for it…open up the floodgates and let it all pour out. You’ll be surprised just how much you have to say once you get started.
Flip your problems around…
I’m one of those annoying, optimistic people who likes to look on the bright side of life. It makes for an excellent journal exercise. This one was actually inspired by Christina who loved the way I flipped my insecurities around and made them positives in my recent post-the greatest life lesson I’ve learnt so far.
Basically, how it goes is, you write down all of your problems/worries/insecurities and find a way to make a positive out of them. It’s not always an easy thing to do but trust me, with practice you will become a pro. It’s so much nicer to live on the bright side anyhow.
How are you…really?
You know when someone asks you how you are and you just automatically respond with ‘fine’ when really you feel so completely not-fine that it is laughable? Well that’s where your journal comes in. Because with your journal you can be 100% totally, completely honest. No one will judge you or feel sorry for you. You can say it exactly how it is.
What I normally do is write the heading, “I am feeling…” and then I just start listing all of the things I am currently feeling and why that might be.
Sometimes you can even take this a step further and try to address any of the mucky things you are feeling. If someone has upset you maybe you can talk to them. If you are feeling anxious about something, maybe you can ask someone for advice.
Once you know what problem is causing the emotion it makes it a whole lot easier to fix it.
#Goals and reflections…
I have just recently started writing down my goals each month and at the end of the month I decided to turn it into a journaling exercise and reflect on how many I achieved.
I wrote about what went well and congratulated myself a little (it’s like I always say, you’ve got to be your own cheerleader.) And for the goals I wasn’t so successful with I wrote about what went wrong and how I might go about achieving them next month or way way in the future (if I was a little too ambitious.)
It’s so helpful to have concrete goals written out in front of you. It makes you more motivated to try work towards them. And even if you don’t quite get there it’s okay because learning from our mistakes is how we grow.
A letter to no one…
I most often turn to my journal when I’m feeling really frustrated or upset about something, so this is an exercise for those moments especially.
Write out a letter and address it to whoever you need to say something to. Maybe it’s to the person who you are mad at. Maybe it’s to a person who you’ve got unexpected feelings for. Maybe it’s to yourself to remind yourself how incredibly awesome you are (you go girl!)
DON’T actually send the letter (I mean obviously not if it’s to yourself cause that would be real weird.)
But I’ve found that writing out a letter is an excellent way of saying what you need to say to someone without actually having to say it. It gives you a chance to read over your words and make sure that when you really do confront them you aren’t being driven completely by those untrustworthy emotions.
So those are just a few of the journaling prompts that I use when I don’t know what to write. Let me know if you’d like to see some more because I’ve got a billion ideas up my sleeve and I’d be more than happy to share them with you.
Now tell me…
Do you have any great journaling prompts?
Have you tried bullet journaling yet?