Easy Prompts for a Gratitude and Intention Setting Journal

As a therapist, yogi, and just a human who has done it before, I know that journaling is a great habit to create. Keeping a consistent journal is a great way to process thoughts and emotions, improve mood, express and discover creativity, and more. We all have seen a million articles on it, too, from the benefits to how to do it. With that comes a million ways to do your journal. You can keep a daily log of your accomplishments, practice gratitude, use writing prompts, free flow your thoughts down on paper…the list goes on.

So, in an attempt to get back into journaling, I decided recently to challenge myself to do some simple journaling every day. It literally only takes about 5-10 minutes from my day, and I’ve noticed a pretty big shift in my mood and increase in productivity since doing so.

In case you’re interested in getting into (or back into) journaling and want an easy way to do so, here are the prompts I’ve been completing for the past couple weeks:

My journal entries are split between the morning and evening. I try to do the morning parts as soon as I can after waking up and challenging myself to do it before scrolling through social media. In the evening, I pull my journal back out, reflect on the day, and do the second half of my journaling for the day.

For the morning entry, I think about the following two prompts:

Today, I am grateful for:

Try to write down at least three things you can be grateful for today and make them unique. Don’t simply write down the same three things every day. Really try to dig deep and find new and even the smallest things you can be grateful for today.

The second prompt is:

Intentions for today:

Again, challenge yourself to write down at least three things you’d like to work towards today. The big difference here between intention setting and making a todo list is rather than write out all the work you need to get done, think about how you would like the day to go. How do you want to carry yourself through the day? How would you like to treat yourself and others?

Some examples of intentions I’ve written down are:

  • Take care of my body through exercise and eating healthy foods

  • Practice being present

  • Be productive and content with what I accomplish today

For me, this simple act of writing down what I’m grateful for and my intentions for the day have totally changed how the rest of the day goes. I start my mindset off by thinking about what I have to be thankful for and set a tone for how I want the day to go. This doesn’t mean that the day will go perfect and you’ll completely achieve what you set out to do, but the big thing is starting the day off feeling positive and making the decision for how you want to go into the new day.

Next, comes the evening journal prompts. Again, there are only two, and they are meant to be a reflection of how the day went and what I’d like to achieve tomorrow. Here are the two prompts for the end of the day:

Day’s accomplishments:

Again, push yourself to think of three things you were able to achieve today. This might be difficult for some of us, but trust me, you achieve at least three things every day. Try to again think small and appreciate the steps you took towards having a healthy, productive day. It could simply be “Got out of bed” or it could be as big as “Wrote a blog post” or “Got a promotion.”

The second evening prompt is:

Goals for tomorrow:

Now that you’ve reflected on your day and most likely thought about all you didn’t achieve along with what you did, you can start to think about setting the tone for tomorrow. What intentions might you want to set for the coming day, or what goals do you want to work towards? Finishing your day off by finding your achievements and setting a tone for tomorrow will help you see your strengths and keep you on track for having another amazing day tomorrow.

Journaling can be a difficult habit to create, and many of us think we don’t have time for it. But, with simple prompts that have big impacts, we can definitely carve out the time to make it happen. It’s all about what you want to prioritize and spend your time on. By making journaling a part of your daily routine, it’ll quickly become a habit, one that I’m sure will have positive effects on your mental health, mood, and productivity.

Are you someone who journals? Do you follow prompts or prefer the free flow method? Share your journaling tips below so we can all grow and learn together.

- Namaste