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Start Your New Year Strong! 6 Handy Journaling Prompts

Written by Gracie Greer, Converge multimedia journalism intern and senior at Sugar Hill Christian Academy

Have you ever gone to bed at night feeling like your day was wasted? Or maybe you’ve felt like each day is a repeat of the previous one. Days like these make it easy for us to feel “stuck” in our lives. All of us have felt this way at some point, but how can we fix it? Journaling could be an excellent place to start. There are several benefits to keeping a daily journal.

Journaling helps you to keep yourself accountable, discover the roots of your problems, brainstorm solutions, reflect on your experiences and ultimately help you move in the right direction. Don’t know where to start? No worries! Check out these goal-oriented prompts and instructions to help you get started.

Question #1: What do I want out of today?
This could be as simple as listing an emotion like “happiness” or “peace,” or you could pick something more specific like “I want to conquer one fear today.” It can be whatever you want it to be—just fill in the blank. By answering this question, you are more likely to accomplish what you want since you are consciously reminding yourself about it.

Questions #2 and #3: Two Personal Growth Questions
These two questions are meant to help you improve in areas that you personally struggle with. For example, if you struggle with anger, you could ask yourself, “How did I control my tongue today?” or “How did I make an effort to de-escalate?” If you struggle with timidness, you could ask yourself, “How did I voice my opinion today?” or “How did I speak up for myself today?” Questions like these help you to notice and acknowledge areas of improvement where you wouldn’t have otherwise.

Question #4: What am I struggling with? How will I fix it?
This prompt is useful because not only does it force us to face our problems, but it makes us come up with practical solutions for them. Example: Today I struggled with completing my schoolwork; I will make a schedule for schoolwork tomorrow.

Question #5: What could I have done better?
Some days you will feel like you did your best, and others you will feel like you could write a whole essay on what you could have done better. Even if you could have improved some that day, just noticing where improvement is needed is a huge step in getting there. Just like we can easily overlook progress, we can also easily overlook mistakes. By acknowledging our shortcomings, we are more likely to do better next time.

Question #6: What am I grateful for?
Even on your worst days, there is something always to be grateful for. This question helps to create perspective in your life and to avoid taking your blessings for granted. Try to come up with one new thing for each day. even the smallest ones make a difference!