gratitude journaling and prompts

May 3, 2020

Journaling is something that you might have heard about over and over again as an important self-care ritual. Whether it is for creativity, organization or gratitude, the benefits and possibilities are endless and completely customizable. Although I didn’t commit to a more structured journal system until this year, I have been using different methods of journaling since high school. For me, I started in a plain black moleskin notebook that I used as a catch all art, gratitude and whatever I wanted to write about journal. Although I really didn’t use it consistently at all, it introduced me to the magic of just writing your thoughts down, not for any other purpose than to get them out of your head.

Today, I find using a larger notebook and dedicating a good amount of time before I go to sleep to sit with myself and my thoughts and just write them out to be more my speed. Even when I sit down with nothing to say, as soon as I start writing, words seem to flow on to the page from an unknown source. I began this habit in January of 2020 after having outgrown the messiness of the art journaling system that I had used previously. Although I expected myself not to actually follow through (as I did with my other journaling habits in the past), it is now May and I have consistently filled up about half of my gratitude journal. Although I call it a gratitude journal, I find myself just unloading most of my thoughts, more so like the idea of morning pages that you might have heard of before. Through this habit, I have found many benefits that I never got through my other journaling systems. By consistently allowing myself a space that is free from judgement, I feel like I have a safe space that doesn’t need to be shared or even reread; it becomes writing for the sake of it. I have found a confidence in my voice that I never had before as I don’t have to validate or explain anything. For me it has also been a way to record my thoughts and feelings around certain events as they happen, giving me something to look back on.

Although this is an amazing habit to start, for me I found it most difficult to get past the barrier of having nothing to write about at first. At times like this it was really useful for me to use journal prompts so I’ve complied a list below to give you a place to start. I find it really useful to dedicate a page to writing down my favorite prompts so hopefully this list will give you some ideas to start with. All you need to do is get started and the rest comes easy.

HannaDotzenroth_journalingprompts.jpgSo writing from a space where I only saw the real benefits of journaling when I committed to it, I really encourage you to at least try. When starting a new habit, I often make a goal to try it for at least one month and go from there. Then you will know whether or not it is for you. Journaling for me has made me notice more and reflect back on what I noticed or how I felt throughout my day. So whether you are journaling in the morning or evening, reflecting or planning, I hope you are also able to find benefits of your own in this habit.

Take care till next time,