We all yearn to have a well-rounded and thriving life; where you can achieve your dreams and ambitions, while also taking care of your mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.  It's not easy to do so, but there are some activities that you can do in order to improve your life – such as journaling.

But not just regular journaling; there are many different kinds of journaling that benefit different aspects of your life! There are journals that help you find closure in past relationships, some that help you destress and others that help you stay focused on your goals.

So, if you're interested in achieving a better and well-balanced life, here are 10 simple journaling ideas that you can try your hand at!

1. Daily Log

red and purple coloring pencils on pink journal

Photo by Jess Bailey on Unsplash

Let's start simple with a daily log! A daily log is very much like a diary, where you simply write about the day, any events that stood out to you, what you felt, et cetera at the end of everyday.

When you write a daily log, try not to give yourself any minimum word counts. Some days, you'll only be able to write a few sentences, and that's completely fine! When you keep journal-writing low pressure, you'll find it much easier to commit to writing daily and to pick up the habit.

Plus, there's no need to limit yourself to just writing. With journaling, you can add pictures and drawings to your pages as you please! And with a digital journal app like Journey, you can easily upload pictures, videos and even audio to your entry!

The best part about keeping a daily log is that, in the future, you'll be able to look back at all your entries and see just how far you've come! And with Journey's Throwback feature, you can easily revisit a random old entry of yours and reminisce on the good ol' times (or be grateful that those difficult times are over).

How Journey's Throwback looks like and how it appears on your Stories on iOS

Journey will select a random post of yours from the past and feature it on your Stories tab. You'll even get a notification on your device about it!

2. Brain-dump

Journaling can be a great outlet for when you're stressed. Instead of letting your stresses and worries take up place in your mind, simply take out your journal and brain-dump all of it down onto the page. Don't worry about being organized, just let it all out in whatever shape or form you wish.

The best part about writing all your worries out on your journal, is that you can go back later and reflect on things. Reflecting on your feelings and your triggers can help you uncover the root cause behind your stress.

You may or may not be able to control or change what's causing your stress, but if you can, then it may be time to do some problem-solving.

3. Problem-solving

When you're faced with a difficult decision, journaling about your problems is a great way to take a step back and look at the problem objectively.

Try to write down the problem that you're struggling with and create two columns under that statement: one for the pros and the other for the cons. Then, slowly put down the pros and cons that you can think of.

How you can write a problem-solving journal entry on Journey's desktop app
How you can write a problem-solving journal entry on Journey's desktop app

Once you've got everything laid out before you, you'll find that it becomes much easier to see what the best course of action is.

4. Unsent letter

white paper and brown envelope

Photo by Kate Macate on Unsplash

An unsent letter is a pretty interesting type of journaling. As its name suggests, you'll be writing a letter to someone that you will never send. The only one who will read this letter is you, and you only.

So why bother writing this letter then?

Well, people write unsent letters for a variety of reasons. Some write to the dearly departed, others write to friends or lovers they've fallen out with, and some write to their past or future selves.

The point of an unsent letter is to gain some kind of closure – whether it's words left unsaid, an unresolved argument, or a lingering grudge. When you write an unsent letter, you'll be able to release all your thoughts and feelings about this person without fear of judgement. This allows you to get a lot of buried feelings out of the way.

5. Write down your daily focus

Instead of just writing a daily to-do list, why not go a step further and write down your daily focus instead? Think of your daily focus as a mix of a prioritized to-do list and goal setting.

In your daily focus, try to limit yourself to 3-5 items. These are the items that you'll, as the title suggests, will be focusing on for the day, so don't burn yourself out by focusing on too many things in one day.

Then, next to the items listed, write 1-2 words about why you want to focus on that task for the day. Here's an example to illustrate this:

An example of how you can write your daily focus on Journey's desktop app
An example of how you can write your daily focus on Journey's desktop app

This journaling idea helps you prioritize what's truly important to you, rather than just living on auto-pilot and mindlessly completing the tasks that come your way. Now, you'll find that your day-to-day has become more purposeful.

6. Record your wins

For those who struggle with low self-confidence and self-doubt, recording your small wins can be a great way to give you the boost that you need. This journaling idea can be especially useful on a bad day, or even for those suffering from mood disorders like depression.

These wins can be anything you're proud of yourself for completing, no matter how small. Yes, even something like "got up on time this morning" or "managed to wash the dishes" can be considered a win! Of course, it can be as big as "completed a huge project after a long week".

Once you build up a habit of recording your wins everyday, you'll learn how to celebrate and appreciate the smaller things in life!

7. Write down a daily affirmation

Don't underestimate the power of daily positive affirmations! You may not notice its effects right away, but over time, you'll find that you'll start to speak and think of yourself in a more positive light!

So, every morning or night, consider writing down a daily affirmation in your journal, before you proceed with your regular journal entry.

Need a guide on what daily affirmations to use for this journaling idea? A simple Google search can bring up lists upon lists of positive daily affirmations that you can add to your journal entries.

8. Things you're looking forward to doing

When you get stuck into a routine, things can get boring real fast. Spice things up by writing about at least one thing you're looking forward to doing the next day!

It doesn't need to a planned activity like "tomorrow, I'll get ice cream", or "tomorrow, I'll buy that shirt I've been eyeing". Rather, it can also be something like "I'm looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow", or "I'm looking forward to having some free time after work". This helps you to look for simple things that will make you happy everyday!

9. A mental wellness check-in

At the end of every week, or once every few days, you can consider doing a mental wellness check-in journal entry. This is usually a checklist of things to make sure that you've been taking care of your mental wellbeing. You'll be surprised at how the small and trivial things in life can affect your mental state!

It's a pretty simple journaling idea that should take you less than 5 minutes every time!

Here's an example of what a mental wellness checklist looks like:

10. Answer 1 question everyday

This is a pretty fun journaling idea to try out, especially if you're unsure about what to write on that day. Simply pluck a random question online to ask yourself, and scribble down your answer! These can be fun questions like:

  • What's the most delicious things you've ever eaten?
  • Comfy or fashionable?
  • What's your favorite flower?

Or you can try deep and thought-provoking questions that will help you discover more about yourself, like:

  • Is your present self someone that your younger self would look up to? Why or why not?
  • What would you do differently if there was no one to judge you?
  • What is something that you constantly take for granted?

Experience a variety of journaling ideas with Journey Coach

If you're a little too busy to figure out which journaling idea you'd like to try, we've got just the thing for you! Journey's guided journaling coach program, Journey Coach, will give you a variety of different topics to journal about. Upon enrollment, you will receive a set of daily prompts over the next few days that you can answer.

How Journey Coach and its prompts look like on the iOS app
How Journey Coach and its prompts look like on the iOS app

Journey Coach is a great way to gain more exposure to all kinds of journaling ideas, as well as self-care and self-improvement topics – all with minimal effort on your part.

Getting started on journaling may seem intimidating and scary at first, but we hope that we've managed to change your mind on that, however slightly. Just take things slow, don't pressure yourself, and you'll be just fine.

Download Journey to get started on journaling today!