Journaling can aid us in combating and managing various emotions and life transitions, such as seeking closure over a recent break-up or releasing intense emotions. Yet, you may not want to use your down time to think about your negative mood or life experiences. Journaling can be more than processing negative emotions; it can also be a creative way to intentionally uplift your mood through imaginative expression. You can use these positive journaling approaches whenever you need space to boost your mood, encourage feelings of excitement, and feel gratitude.
For a positive journaling approach, you can write about what you are currently loving or treasured memories.
Every now and then, you can write a brief list of what you are currently loving for that day, month, or season. This can help remind you of things you enjoy for when you need a break. Thinking about what you love and what makes you happy also improves your mood. Maybe you are currently loving a new skincare or shower product, an article of clothing, a pet, an activity, or a person. You can write about your current loves as a list format and add some drawings or stickers to add to the page. When I write about what I am currently loving, I sometimes include receipts that match with the love, such as a receipt from a restaurant I am currently loving.
- List format is less time-consuming
- Encourages creativity through drawing or decorating the page
- Freedom to be “crafty” and include receipts or stickers associated with the list
- Helps track how your interests change, stay the same, or evolve
- Uplifts your mood
- Can create this list at any time—it is not time sensitive and there are no deadlines
An alternative for a positive journal prompt is writing a happy or uplifting memory. Whenever you have a happy memory or want to remember a special day/event, write it down in a journal with the date. Then, at the end of the year, you can reread your entries and reflect on the precious moments you enjoyed. Some examples of happy memories or moments include an achievement, seeing loved ones, accomplishing a goal, a fun trip, or crossing something off your bucket list. This positive journaling prompt gives you the freedom to write as little or as much as you want, with no time commitment. You do not have to write a memory for every day. This is a journal for you to do as you feel comfortable and able.
- Record treasured memories to look back on
- Offers flexibility with writing—can be a short paragraph or longer story about the memory
- Uplifts your mood
- Encourages feelings of gratitude
- Ability to add creativity through adding photographs, drawings, stickers, etc.
- Acts like a scrapbook or diary, but with less commitment