Journaling is one of those practices that’s like salt or sugar – it goes well with everything!
How Dominant is Your Shadow Self?
The human shadow contains every thought, feeling, desire, and personality trait that we have rejected or suppressed. How dominant is yours?
AKA. no matter what situation you’re experiencing in life, no matter what your life looks like, or what field you work in, journaling has your back.
In particular, if you’re struggling with mental health issues, journaling has pretty rock-solid science backing its ability to help you de-stress and find more inner calm.
And for those who are wanting to go one step further and are seeking to live a more soul-centered and meaningful life, journaling excels in this area too.
The magic of journaling lies in its gift of helping us to dig deep into the blood, marrow, and bones of our deepest selves.
Indeed, journaling is as much of a sacred soul work tool as it is a mainstream self-help practice.
Table of contents
- Journaling, Mental Health, & Soul Loss
- 100+ Journaling Ideas For Mental Health & Wellbeing
- i) Holistic Journaling Ideas
- ii) Chakra Journaling Ideas
Journaling, Mental Health, & Soul Loss
It is my conviction that the majority of the suffering in this world is due to Soul Loss – or a loss of connection to our deepest and most authentic selves.
Shadow Work Journal:
"This journal is a tremendous help in looking into myself and being honest with myself. I started shadow work 3 weeks ago, and even though I only do it sporadically, I already feel relieved and, in a sense, calmer. Thank you!" – Bregalad
This philosophy of inner fragmentation is reflected in many shamanic and ancient teachings. (See our article on Soul Loss for more guidance.)
Soul Loss leads to a phenomenon called the Dark Night of the Soul, a kind of existential lethargy that doesn’t leave us.
What many people call “depression,” “anxiety,” or “poor mental health” these days is actually a symptom of Soul Loss and living metaphorically ‘in the dark.’
Reflective journaling is a simple and gentle way of helping us to pull back the thorns, scabs, and walls that have blocked us off from our inner Light.
100+ Journaling Ideas For Mental Health & Wellbeing
There are so many ways of approaching journaling and there are tons of journaling ideas out there already. But I want to approach this practice in a unique way.
Below I’ve used a couple of different age-old systems and modalities to help you dive deep.
Because mental health and wellbeing issues are primarily symptoms of Soul Loss (in my experience and understanding), you’ll find that these journaling ideas have a distinct spiritual/metaphysical orientation.
First, we’ll start with the body-heart-mind-soul approach and then with the chakra system.
i) Holistic Journaling Ideas
Well-being is the holistic feeling of vitality, aliveness, and freshness on all layers of your being.
For this reason, we’ll explore some journaling ideas for your body, heart, mind, and soul below:
Body Journaling Ideas
- What does my body need right now?
- What physical symptoms of unease have I been having lately? What might they mean?
- What kinds of physical self-care do I practice / need to practice more?
- Write about a time your body has protected or helped you.
- What makes me feel physically good? (How can I keep doing that?)
- What part of my body do I love the most? Why?
- If my body could speak, what would it say to me?
- What have I been taught about my body and how does that make me feel?
- What would totally accepting my body look or feel like?
- What is my relationship to my sexuality like? Why?
Heart Journaling Ideas
- If I could picture or sense my heart, what would it look or feel like?
- What three things generate a feeling of love in my heart?
- If my heart could speak to me, what would it say?
- How has my heart been wounded?
- What topics or areas of life fill me with passion?
- What thoughts cause my heart to constrict and close?
- What do I struggle with more: giving or receiving love? Why?
- What does self-love look like to me?
- How can I incorporate more self-compassion into my daily life?
- What do I genuinely love about myself?
Mind Journaling Ideas
- Write down three things you fear – how can they actually be positive things that may potentially lead you to grow in ways you’d never experience otherwise?
- What places, people, or practices help you to feel mentally calm? Why?
- List five things you’re thankful for right now. How can you make being grateful more a part of your life?
- What toxic core beliefs do you need to let go of (and replace with healthier self-beliefs)?
- What are your three favorite positive affirmations that help you to feel uplifted?
- What does your shadow self or wounded part of you look/sound like?
- Explore three ways you can set strong boundaries to protect your wellbeing.
- What’s your greatest strength in this life?
- If your inner child could speak to you, what would they say?
- If you could do anything empowering right now, what would you do (and why)?
Soul Journaling Ideas
- What was the most magical moment that ever happened to you? What did it look and feel like, and why was it so special?
- Explore one of your most recent nighttime dreams – what does it mean? (See How to Understand the Meaning of Your Dreams if you need more help.)
- Close your eyes, put a hand over your heart (which is the doorway to your Soul), and tune into your deepest Self. What does your Soul want you to know?
- What is the difference between Soul and Spirit in your opinion?
- What is your Soul place (a special physical space in this world)?
- Reflect on the three biggest lessons you believe your Soul came into this life to learn.
- Do you believe in soulmates? Why/why not?
- What does living a “Soul-centered” life mean to you?
- How has Soul Loss manifested in your life?
- What experiences, tools, environments, or beings help you to feel more connected with your Soul?
ii) Chakra Journaling Ideas
The chakra system is an ancient and multi-faceted philosophy that was first written about in the Vedas dating roughly back to around 1500 BC.
Understanding and working with your chakras helps you to create energetic harmony and spiritual balance. These chakra journaling ideas can reveal what areas of your life need more attention:
Root Chakra Journaling Ideas
- In what areas of life am I ungrounded?
- What does my “personal boundary” feel like and how do I know when it’s being invaded?
- What element of nature most represents me? Why?
- What people or places make me feel safe?
- What part of my body am I most disconnected from? Why?
- If I was an animal, which one would I be and why?
- In stressful situations, what can I do to help myself stay centered?
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “I have the right to be here and take up space.”
- Explore the connection between gratitude and abundance.
- Reflect on your childhood: what basic needs were you deprived of, if any(e.g., food, water, shelter, warmth, medical assistance, a safe house/neighborhood)?
Learn more about root chakra healing.
Sacral Chakra Journaling Ideas
- What simple pleasures do you enjoy the most in life?
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “I have the right to feel.”
- Reflect on what “healthy sexuality” means to you.
- What is your favorite body-centered practice (e.g., running, boxing, yoga, tai chi, swimming, pilates, etc.)?
- Name one of your addictive tendencies, what do you think triggers it? What healthy alternative can you find?
- What is the most rigid/fragile part of your body? If it could speak to you, what would it say?
- Explore what your relationship to pleasure is like. Do you over or under indulge?
- What is your favorite sense (smelling, tasting, hearing, touching, seeing) and why?
- What were you taught about self-gratification as a child?
- In what ways can you embrace your sexual nature or sensuality more?
Learn more about sacral chakra healing.
Solar Plexus Chakra Journaling Ideas
- What does “personal power” mean to me?
- As a child, what was I taught about power and autonomy?
- In what areas of life do I feel disempowered? Why?
- Define who you are in ten words or less.
- What makes you feel “weak” in life? Why?
- Explore areas of life where you carry a victim mentality – what does it feel like and what can you do to reclaim your self-sovereignty?
- How does the feeling of shame feel in your body? What can you do to counteract that feeling with love?
- Explore ways you can individuate more. (Read about individuation.)
- Reflect on these words by Joseph Campbell: “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” What does that mean to you?
- List three ways you can strengthen your self-worth.
Learn more about solar plexus chakra healing.
Heart Chakra Journaling Ideas
- How was love expressed in your family as a child?
- How do you express love as an adult?
- What do you love the most about yourself?
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “I am worthy of love.”
- In what areas of life do you fear intimacy? Why?
- Imagine connecting with a rejected and abandoned part of you, what does this part need to express to you?
- Explore a moment in life when you felt overflowing love, even just for a second.
- What are the three most important qualities you need in a relationship to feel loved and secure?
- Write down three common self-criticisms and counteract them with three loving affirmations.
- What beliefs cause you to feel shut off and disconnected from others?
Learn more about heart chakra healing.
Throat Chakra Journaling Ideas
- When was the last time you were truly heard (and what did it feel like)?
- Are you a good listener? Why/why not?
- What kind of music uplifts you? What might it say about your deeper needs in life?
- In what situations are you tempted to lie and why?
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “I will speak my truth.”
- Do you have trouble speaking up or conversely, do you speak too much? Why?
- What is your relationship like with gossiping and keeping secrets?
- What is your favorite form of creative expression?
- Think of a person in your life you have trouble communicating with. Why do you think this is the case (try to think objectively)?
- What does the concept of “truth” mean to you?
Learn more about throat chakra healing.
Third Eye Chakra Journaling Ideas
- What does your intuition sound or feel like within you?
- Reflect on what areas of life you tend to see in black or white rather than shades of grey.
- List the three biggest areas of life in which you feel confused. What can you do to gain more clarity?
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “Everything I need is within me.”
- What does being open-minded mean to you?
- In what ways were your perceptive abilities invalidated as a child?
- Visualize in your mind’s eye where you want to be in life. Is your dream realistic or idealistic – or perhaps a little of both?
- What powerful insight have you had recently?
Learn more about third eye chakra healing.
Crown Chakra Journaling Ideas
- List the spirit guides (dead or alive, real or imaginary) who you believe are guiding you in life.
- What were you taught about spirituality as a child? Was it helpful or unhelpful?
- List your favorite spiritual practices and what part of you they have opened/healed.
- Write about how the following words make you feel: “I am a spiritual being having a human experience.”
- Explore your most recent spiritual or mystical experience. What do you think it meant?
- What does “Wholeness” mean to you?
- Think about a difficult situation in your life, what is its deeper/higher underlying teaching?
- Start a spiritual journal practice!
Learn more about crown chakra healing.
Feel free to bookmark this page, send it to a friend, or print it out if it’s of help to you.
You can methodically go through each question or alternatively pick and choose those you feel drawn to. Do whatever resonates with you!
If you enjoyed these prompts, you might want to check out my 30+ mindfulness journaling prompts article also.
Which of these journaling ideas is your favorite? I’d love to hear below!