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11 Journaling Prompts for Stress Relief, So You Can Live Better

11 Journaling Prompts for Stress Relief, So You Can Live Better

Sometimes, paper is the best listener. It doesn't matter if you love to write or not. If you want to feel better, try these journaling prompts for stress relief. Use them for self-discovery, recovery, and to clear out the cobwebs in your head. Your whole life will feel... lighter, and spacious.

“We should be grateful for all the situations that make us the most uncomfortable, because without them we would not know there is something unhealed within us.” — Ken Wapnick

A few tips on using these journaling prompts:

  • Don’t censor yourself. Write imperfectly, privately, openly, and honestly. If you don’t want anyone to see what you’ve written, you can shred or burn the pages (safely, of course) once you’ve finished.
  • Do something that relaxes you and clears your mind before you write. I like to meditate or stretch first.
  • Let it all go. Start writing and keep your pen moving until there’s a natural pause and you feel finished with that train of thought.

11 Journaling Prompts for Stress Relief, and Living the Way *You* Want To

1. I find myself repeating this script in my head today:

2. Right now, I feel challenged by ________. I feel supported when ________.

3. I have been paying a lot of attention to ________. I would like to pay more attention to ________; I can devote more energy to the better-feeling alternatives by ________.

“Write hard and clear about what hurts.” — Ernest Hemingway

4. The things that help me the most right now are…

5. What can I do in this moment to get myself some nourishment and self-care?

6. I am thankful that I…

7. How might this stressful experience transform me into a more loving (compassionate, forgiving, patient, helpful, or faithful) person?

8. What past challenge has turned out to be a gift in disguise (even if it’s still painful)? Why? What was the silver lining?

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” — William Wordsworth

9. What’s not wrong in my life? Here are three things that I can think of right now:

10. If I knew that anything I asked for would be answered, I would ask for ________.

11. What do I want my life to FEEL like?

“Tears are words that need to be written.” — Paulo Coelho

. . .

Tell me:

Which of these prompts did you need the most today?

Tell me in the comments. I read every single one, and I'd love to know!

With love,


P.S. Need a little more help letting go? Get my book Sleep Rituals for 100 at-home practices that are all about you and the present moment. It’s more than a book about sleeping better. It’ll help you feel better so you can live and love better. And that’s… everything.

Comments on this post (5)

  • Apr 10, 2022

    Hi Jennifer Healey,

    11. What do I want my life to FEEL like?
    6. I am thankful that I…
    5. What can I do in this moment to get myself some nourishment and self-care?

    I am thankful for your questions .I really needed them.


    — Nafi Thompson

  • Dec 17, 2020

    Corinne, thank you for sharing this with me. I’m so glad these prompts could help you get back to that place inside, where you can see the light even through the toughest situations. I think that’s quite a strength to have in this world. I appreciate your perspective and for writing, and reading. Take care of yourself. <3

    — Jennifer Williamson

  • Dec 17, 2020

    Hi Jen,

    It was valuable to do all 11 of the journal prompts.

    I needed to ask myself what past challenge has turned out to be a gift in disguise. Turns out I can reel a dozen off with ease, and name quite significant reasons why they made me a better person or positively impacted my life. Even if the challenges were devastating, I could still find a positive.

    It reminded me that I’m an optimistic person, I can rationalise even the most emotional events and can see the good in most situations. It has pulled me out of a negative spiral and pointed me back in the right direction.

    I am new to the site, but particularly grateful for your good influence today.

    Take care,


    — Corinne

  • May 25, 2020

    Terese, thank you for sharing this, and for being open to thinking differently, even if only for a little while. One “little while” at a time is how change usually works :) Sending you love in the middle of all the unknowns.

    — Jennifer Williamson

  • May 25, 2020

    Hi. I think I needed the What’s not wrong in my life. I focus on negative things so it is good to be reminded and make room for the positive aspects.

    Thank you. I enjoyed the prompts. They were thought provoking and nudged me, for a little while anyway, out of this atmosphere of anxiety and despair.



    — Terese Pampellonne

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