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Building a Journaling Habit + 10 prompts

Hey y'all! Today my friend Madison from Mads Maybe is sharing her tips for building a journaling habit.

The act of journaling can be beneficial to everyone, no matter how creative or talented you think you are. Creating a safe space where you can document your thoughts and sort through them, that only you can see, can be both inspiring and therapeutic because it removes some clutter from your mind and guides your thoughts to provide clarity. Journaling can be anything you want it to be – fictional pieces from your imagination, documentation of your day, a story map to your future.

Although there are no rules to journaling and it’s a different process for each person, I’ve listed some tips to help you get started:

Establish your journal. 

It’s easy to get in to the habit of journaling when you have a specific notebook set aside for your journaling purposes. You’ll be more committed to the task with a dedicated book and your thoughts will be more organized than they would be in the spare pages of your chemistry notebook. Pick out a notebook that is medium to large in size and make sure the pages are lined if that’s how you’re accustomed to writing.

Set a time for journaling. 

You don’t have to journal at exactly 8:33 p.m. every night, you can have a broad time range where you know you can relax, sit down, and write. It’s okay to skip days or change the time around to fit your schedule, but it helps to establish a routine and get used to writing before bed, in the morning, or late afternoon. When you make journaling a regular part of your day, the habit is easy to create.

Use visuals and incorporate artwork.

Journaling can be a lot more fun if your goal is to make your pages visually appealing. Little doodles, hand-drawn images to represent the entry, and borders are interesting and pull your creativity in a different way. In the same logic of decorating your planner pages, decorate your journal because it’s something you see everyday and you want it to be beautiful and you’re willing to spend time on it. You don’t have to be the best artist, work with your skills and find a style that you love.

Read to improve your own writing.

While most of us aren’t planning to turn our journaling into best-selling novels, reading can increase your creativity and help you fine-tune your writing skills. Reading blogs, magazines, novels, and other creative works brings inspiration and different perspectives. Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, writing is a tool necessary in many aspects of life and journaling is the best place to practice and incorporate techniques you’ve picked up through reading.

Curate a stockpile of journaling prompts.

Some days your thoughts just flow through the pen and some days they don’t. On the days when inspiration just doesn’t seem to be coming, pull out a journaling prompt and let it guide you. Prompts are great for taking your thoughts to places they weren’t going on their own and they can make you consider things you hadn’t before. Pinterest has a wealth of prompts and I’ve also listed ten below to get you started!

Prompts for Inspiration:

1. Write a letter to yourself in five years.
2. Describe in detail three goals for the future that aren’t financial or career related.
3. Write a page about someone who has changed your life.
4. Vent your anger about something as a release of that negative energy.
5. What advice have you received that you chose to ignore?
6. Write about the creative hobbies you would like to try and how you would start.
7. Write a short story that starts with the main character doing something you did today.
8. Write a list of the things you would like to accomplish tomorrow, next week, and next month.
9. Describe the places where you would love to travel.
10. Fill the page with positive thoughts, compliments, and your accomplishments.


Madison is a lifestyle blogger from North Carolina and encourages women to create and celebrate every day. You can find her at her blog Mads Maybe or on one of the platforms below.

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