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Journal Prompts for Self-Care and Self-Love

Journal Prompts for Self-Care and Self-Love
JOURNAL PROMPTS FOR SELF-CARE AND SELF-LOVE

If you like to journal and get your thoughts down on paper then try these journal prompts for self-care and self-love. Identify what makes you feel good and find ways to include these things into your daily life!

WHY I LOVE TO JOURNAL

I love writing a diary or in a journal because I love words and the power they give to the thoughts and actions that follow them. I love how I get clarity when I can see my jumbled thoughts take shape on paper. It helps me know what I’m really thinking and what, if anything, I need to do about it.

“Journaling is like whispering to one’s self and listening at the same time.” (Mina Murray)

Keeping a journal is a powerful method of self-reflection to identify your deepest thoughts and emotions. Yet, it’s also a very useful tool in helping you work out what’s going well in life, what needs a little work perhaps and explore what makes you happy and at peace or sad, anxious and frustrated.

You can identify triggers, situations, actions and then put in place strategies and solutions to help you have more of what you love and need in life and a little less of things that just bring you down.

THE BENEFITS OF JOURNALING FOR SELF-CARE

Not only has journaling helped me learn more about myself and explore my thoughts and feelings, studies have shown that journaling has benefits for us in many other ways including:

  • Relieving stress
  • Reducing symptoms of depression
  • Decluttering and clearing your mind
  • Boosting your mood
  • Increasing self-awareness
  • Improving your communication
  • Setting and reaching goals
  • Improving your working memory

And that’s just for starters!

If you’re interested to learn more about why journaling is good for your mind, you can read more about the benefits of journaling in this article from Positive Psychology on the 83 benefits of journaling.

Journal prompts for self-care and self-love

JOURNALING AS PART OF YOUR SELF-CARE PRACTICE

Many of the benefits we’ve looked at so far are focused around your mental health. As we’ve mentioned, and as studies suggest, journaling has been shown to have a positive effect on reducing the symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress.

And, of course, nourishing your mental health is an important aspect of effective self-care.

We tend to think of self-care as spa treatments, long hot baths, eating healthily and a run around the block. But that’s only part of the story…

Self-care is about taking care of the inner you as much as the outer you. Self-care is about nurturing and supporting a healthy body and mind.

However, I’m also very aware that self-care can seem a luxury.

When we have pulls and pushes on our time and energy and To Do lists as long as our arms, taking time out to look after our own self seems out of reach. We prioritise everything and everybody else and then wonder why we feel tired, angry and less than our wonderful, unique self!

If this sounds familiar, and I’m sure it does to many of us, I invite you to re-frame how you think about self-care and self-love. And, whilst you’re at it, why not make journaling part of your self-care practice so you can stay in tune with what you need, want, think and feel.

That’s why I’ve created a little list below of journal prompts for self-care.

I hope they encourage you to think about you, why you are special and how taking care of yourself will help you feel better, in both body and mind. Not least so you can carry on doing what you need to do and looking after who you need to – without running yourself into the ground in the process.

Use the prompts to explore feelings of insecurity, self-doubt, comparison, pressure, limitation, expectation, stress, worry vs what lifts you up, gives you strength, embrace change and opportunity, enjoyment and peace.

JOURNAL PROMPTS FOR SELF-CARE AND SELF-LOVE

Here are 30 journal prompts for self-care and self-love. Be compassionate and gentle with yourself. Just for the moment put your needs before those of others. 

I hope they help you reconnect with yourself, increase your self-awareness and foster positive change. Answer in as much detail as you can, give specific examples or situations where possible and reflect on what you did, felt and learnt or would like to do, feel and learn.

  • Three things I love most about myself are…
  • I feel proud of myself for…
  • Three things that make me unique are…
  • People compliment me on…
  • My biggest achievements in life are…
  • I love…
  • My greatest strength is…
  • I’m ready to…
  • Five things I know to be true about myself are…
  • People who love me would describe me as…
  • Three words I would use to describe myself are…
  • When I know I look good I…
  • The last time I looked after myself was…
  • I’m unhappiest when…
  • My priorities in life are to…
  • In five years’ time I’d like to be…
  • If I could give my younger self one piece of advice it would be…
  • I aspire to…
  • I’m grateful for…
  • The legacy I’d like to leave for the world is…
  • If there was one thing I’d do differently if I could turn back time it would be…
  • If I had more free time I’d…
  • When I’m stressed I…
  • I’m important because…
  • I feel happiest when…
  • The things I need to make me feel most content are…
  • I know I’m ready for change when…
  • My greatest strength is…
  • When I look in the mirror I see…
  • My friends compliment me on…

If you like, review what you wrote and see if you can use these responses to create a self-care plan that feels right to you.

Journal prompts for self-care

THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND AS YOU JOURNAL

If you’re new to journaling or revisiting the practice after a break, I encourage you to read these journaling tips for beginners.

I also encourage you to keep the following things in mind as you journal:

1. What are you trying to achieve?

It may be that using your journal to capture thoughts on paper as a visual record is enough. It certainly helps to get stuff out of your head and see it take shape in your notes. It can clear our heads and give us space to think.

However, what is it that you’d like journaling to do for you? What do you want to achieve? If it’s more than just a cathartic exercise of freeing up your mind then it might be helpful to decide what you want to achieve before you sit down to journal today.

  • Do you want to use your writing to create an action plan of things to do, stresses to deal with, goals to achieve, changes to make?
  • Perhaps your aim is to look back over your journal for the last week or month, say, and note recurrent themes, feelings or thoughts.
  • Or, you might just want to free-flow your writing as a way of clearing your head without a particular objective in mind. If this is the case, maybe you’d like to explore the stream of consciousness journaling habit of Morning Pages by Julia Cameron.
2. Avoid setting expectations

Journaling isn’t a precise art and there are no rights or wrongs. Don’t worry about making mistakes, writing the wrong thing or anticipating a certain outcome.

We often put expectations on ourselves and extra pressure to do, achieve, be, look a certain way… the list continues. For now, put those expectations to the side and focus on what you really want and what really matters.

What you write and how you write is likely to change over time and even from day to day. Go with the flow, be honest with yourself and do what feels right for you in that moment.

3. Be calm and present

If you’re having a busy day and trying to journal when you’ve got half a mind on what to cook for dinner, then I’d guess you’re probably not in tune with your innermost thoughts and feelings! Try to find time and space to journal in a calm, quiet environment. It doesn’t have to be for long and you don’t need to write 10 pages, but the time you do spend journaling is time when you need to be fully present so you can really listen and re-connect with your inner, quiet self.

FURTHER RESOURCES

Here are some articles on journaling, decluttering your mind and self-care. Maybe you might like to read them when you have a moment…