For many of us, journaling represents a way to help organize our thoughts, recognize and celebrate gratitude and/or work through any challenges currently being faced. By expressing ourselves openly in this way, journaling can help relieve stress and anxiety; becoming a valuable tool to monitor our general health and well-being.
Using a personal journal does not have to solely focus on positives; life is a chaotic mix of ups and downs; our everyday experiences will reflect this. One of our superpowers (resiliency) comes from acknowledging our struggles; journaling can provide support that examines them in a way that does not completely weigh us down or hold us back. We can take care of ourselves through mindful self-compassion; our personal wellness is important.
*Please note that journaling is not a replacement for qualified medical support/treatment. If your emotional, mental and/or physical health negatively impacts your ability to experience a balanced/healthful life, always consult healthcare professionals.*
By taking some time as often as we can; to reflect on our health and wellness, we can remind ourselves about the things we’ve overcome, improved on or been accountable for. Part of working towards growth and thriving is being able to recognize the progress we’ve already made; steps forward might sometimes be small, but they’re still significant. If we keep losing track of our momentum because it’s wonky, sometimes backward and oftentimes exhausting; journaling might be exactly what’s needed to reassure us that things have and will get better.
Here are 10 useful health and well-being journal prompts …
- What do you need right now? Identify three things to continue doing/need to be put in place to nurture your mind/body/spirit.
- What boundaries could you set that support your emotional, mental and physical health?
- What 3 things do you typically draw strength from?
- How do you show kindness and compassion to other people? Identify a number of ways you can share this same consideration with yourself.
- How do you invite intentional joy into your life?
- List the ways you look after your physical health (no matter how small).
- Explore a time when you overcame a difficult challenge.
- What is your favourite quote that inspires or motivates you?
- List 3 self-care activities that you’re going to start using to help yourself feel rested and restored.
Maintaining health and well-being isn’t about overlooking our issues or struggles; it’s about attending to them bit by bit, as best we can and implementing things in life that build resiliency and self-love. Journaling won’t magically resolve everything nor is it practice for perfection (newsflash; that doesn’t exist). If done consistently, however, journaling can become part of a self-care routine that nurtures every part of us. It’s worth giving it a try.
Do you journal? Which is your favourite prompt from the list above? What self-care activities work for you?
NAMI Helpline – a free, nationwide U.S. resource that offers experienced peer-support guidance and advice
CheckPoint – global (by country) resources for mental health support