I like to gather journaling prompts for mental health like other people gather collectibles. These are a few of my most favorite.
I don’t know about you girl but, I’ve been using all of my tried and true self-care and stress management techniques these days.
(BTW – here is a really powerful breathing exercise that Navy SEALS use to reduce their stress. It works!)
If ever there was an opportunity to sit with vulnerability and connect with our inner-power, this is that time.
We’ve talked before about how to journal for self-care and self-esteem. But, today I want to talk about using journaling prompts for mental health.
Having a daily self-care routine is crucial for staying grounded and at peace. But, what happens when you’re in the throes of it all and your thoughts are so distorted you literally want to open your own head and scoop out the bad stuff?
Writing in a mental health journal can be an incredibly therapeutic activity. If you’re like me, you are determined to step into your power and own these next 40 years of life. And, that means letting go of the fear, anxiety, people-pleasing and bad habits of your first 40 years.
Using journaling prompts for mental health can be the conduit that helps you get to that powerful place of alignment.
What is a mental health journal?
A journal is essentially just a notebook.
Of course there are different types and designs. You can spend $1.00 for a notebook at WalMart or you can go on Etsy and spend $50 on a personalized leather one.
Both will do the same function as far as being a place where you can share your thoughts and emotions. But, you will want to choose the one that inspires you the most.
In other words, if you feel more connected to a personalized journal with a beautiful leather cover, then that is the one you should buy.
But, you don’t have a preference and are happy to write down your thoughts and emotions in a spiral-bound notebook from the office supplies aisle of the grocery store, then go with that.
The same goes for the pen that you use.
Choosing the right pen and journal is actually a very important part of the whole process. Because if you are not emotionally connected to them then you won’t use them.
Just like a carpenter needs to have the right size of screwdriver or drill bit for the job, you need to have the right journal and pen for you.
Once you have the tools, your mental health journal evolves based on how you use it.
What do you write in a mental health journal?
When you were a kid, you might have had a diary that you kept hidden away in your dresser drawer or under a mattress. You wrote down all of your most secret and intimate thoughts and your diary kept them secret.
Now that you’re a midlife woman, that diary is called a journal. Easy, right?!
The things that you write in a mental health journal are the same things that you would have written in your diary.
And, your journal keeps them secret in the same way that your diary did.
Your journal is a safe place where you can share your thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or guilt. Journaling prompts for mental health help you to know where to start.
Feelings of anxiety get overwhelming when we hold them inside for fear of being seen as weak or overreacting.
A mental health journal can help you to avoid anxiety escalating to panic attacks by being a safe place for you to prioritize, fears, problems, or concerns.
Also, you can use it to track your moods and/or daily symptoms. This is super helpful when you’re just starting to get a handle on your anxiety because it helps you to identify triggers.
Because I had panic disorder, each panic attack was a trigger. I would mentally beat myself up for being such a drama queen. And, obsess about what I did to cause the panic attack.
I didn’t realize that my panic attacks were born from living out of alignment with my inner-power. In other words, not managing my daily self-care and stress management.
But, once I started using journaling prompts for mental health and really diving into my personal anxiety, I learned so much about myself!
What are journaling prompts?
Staring to write in a mental health journal can feel intimidating. Sure, when we were kids, it was fun and exciting to write in a diary because it was forbidden.
But, now, with years of conditioning ourselves to shrink small and not take up too much space, truly opening up about real feelings can seem way too indulgent.
That is where journal prompts for mental health can really be helpful.
A journaling prompt is basically a question or a statement that is designed to help you explore your thoughts and feelings on a subject.
Just like when you go to therapy, your therapist asks exploratory questions about the subject you’re sharing.
A journaling prompt can help you to really peel back the layers and learn more about where your thoughts and feelings are coming from.
Think of it this way, if you open up your journal and there is a blank page, where do you start?
But, if you open up your journal and there is a question to answer or a statement that is thought-provoking, you are provided a place to start.
Then, the thoughts and feelings just flow from there.
In fact, you might even have some thoughts and feelings that you’ve never had before.
Here’s a quick simple journaling prompt exercise you can try:
- Write down a statement that feels true for you right now about any part of your life that you’re struggling with
- Ask yourself “why?”
- Answer yourself
- Ask yourself “why?” again
- Answer yourself
Eventually, you will get to the real root of where that statement is coming from. Here’s an example:
- I am struggling to stay focused on consistent with my daily meditation
- Because I’m getting distracted by all of the things going on around me
- Because there are a lot of things that need my attention
- Because everyone asks me for help
- Because I’m the one who does everything
- Because I don’t ask for help
So, we started with a statement saying that I couldn’t find the time to commit to my daily goal. And, we ended with the real truth, which was that I need to ask for help.
This is just one example of a journal prompt. Here are a few of my favorites that I use regularly.
111 Journaling Prompts for Mental Health
In my life right now I’m dealing with
There are some things that make me really happy and they are
If I knew there was no way that I wouldn’t win, I would
Today I feel _______ and the last time I felt like this it was because
I’m not happy right now about
There are a few things I wish I could change and they are
What I need to lean into and really accept is
The thing that is the most important in my life right now is
What I’m really irritated by right now is
If there was one thing that I could say to ___________, it would be
The best clue confirming that I feel good is
Today I have to ________ But, I would rather
There are a few things that I need to let go of and they are
There are a few people that I admire and they are
I need to forgive myself for
My negative self-talk lately has been about
Today I have gratitude for
One day I dream about
The things that I love the most about me are
I am worthy of happiness because
The people in my life that I value the most are _____ because
The wins that I have had so far in life are
My past is not a clear reflection of who I am because
I love who I am because
Three times that my anxiety fears were proven wrong are
My fears and worries are not realistic because
I have beat my anxieties by
My #1 anxiety is ______ but, if I connect to my inner-power another perspective on it is
The 3 things I expect from today are
One thing that I can control about my life is
3 ways that I am secure and safe in life are
If I feel anxious today I will connect with my inner-power by
I can rewrite the following parts of my story
My goals for my next 40 years are
The skills that I will need so that I can reach my goals are
In the next 7 days, I will accomplish the following
I can connect with my inner-power better by doing the following
I define success as
One area of my life that I need to work on is
Each day, I can be a more powerful me by
I can show others love each day by
I know that I am good enough and not an imposter because
Today, I connected with my inner-power by
I am highly skilled at
One thing that others can learn from me is
I am more than “good enough” because of my
Today, I some things really well and those were
My negative thoughts about myself are wrong because
I am self-conscious about ____ but, I can increase my self-esteem in this area by
I can make the most of my spare time by
My key lessons from today are
To listen better to others I need to
My #1 tasks to complete today are
Today my wins were
Tomorrow I will do better at
The five things that make me very happy are … The reason they each make me happy is …
The thing that I fear the most is _______. This fear is rational/irrational because ______
In the next year I will improve these things about my life
My happiest memory to date is
The people in my life that make me feel anxious are _____. I can limit my contact with them by
The things that are my biggest pet peeves are
The last time I had a panic attack I was
When I think about ______ I start to feel very anxious
When I take a deep breath and relax I think about
I immediately get anxious if I think about _____. This thought is rational/irrational because
The one thing that I can do to immediately connect with my inner-power is
Tomorrow I will do more to feel relaxed and peaceful by
Three things that I want to learn and become proficient in are
The people that I consider my support system are
My physical reactions to anxiety are
I wish I was better at
If I could live a day in the life of one person it would be _____ (and why)
I want to be remembered by my loved ones for/as
When I think about my finances I feel
Today I stretched out of my comfort zone by
When I think about my job I feel
If I could have anything in the world it would be
In six months I will have accomplished
If I could tell my teenage self one thing it would be
When I think about my relationship with my mom/dad/parents, I feel
If my friends had to describe me they would say
My dream job is ______ (and why)
The fears that are holding me back from connecting to my inner-power are
When I think about doing __________, I get chills and butterflies and am so excited
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about
I forgive _____ for _____
I am unique because
The things I am doing this month for my personal development are
When I think about what other people think about me it makes me feel _____ (and why)
When I have negative feelings I ______
If I were being my 100% truest most powerful self that would like like
I am most insecure about
My 5 most favorite “I AM” statements are
Other people’s opinions are
When I think about where I am in life I feel
Three things that I could do to get out of my comfort zone are
One place in the world that I want to travel to is _____ (and why)
Did I make my choices today from love or fear? Explain
Three things I would change about my current relationship are
Today, if I’m feeling unmotivated, I will
Three grudges that I need to drop immediately are
The one word that describes my life is
When I was a little kid I wanted to be ____ when I grew up. When I think about this I feel
My affirmation for today is ________ When I say it I feel
When I woke up this morning I felt _____ That all changed when ______
What is the one behavior that I have and it’s holding me back from connecting to my inner-power?
When I look in the mirror I feel
My favorite way to practice self-care is
When I think about money I feel
In the next year I want to make _____ amount of money
When I think of my health & wellness routine I feel