These simple journaling prompts invite you to consider your hold on stuff, and your response to the demands on your time.
If it seems like you’ve simplified your life over and over again, only to find your life more and more cluttered and complicated, perhaps a new approach is in order. Better understanding why you want to live more simply and what is standing in your way can help.
Even though I journal almost daily, simple journaling prompts help me direct my thoughts and examine how I’m feeling about something specific. With that information, I can create an action plan that resonates with me so that not only is it easier to get started, but the changes I make last.
If you want to simplify your life (for good this time), use these 7 journaling prompts (3 for clutter and 4 for busyness) to direct your thoughts, examine your feelings and create an action plan that works best for you.
When you start to journal, jot down one of these prompts at the top of the page, set a timer for fifteen minutes and go. At the end of fifteen minutes, stand-up, take a deep breath in and let it all go. Notice if you feel lighter or if you feel like writing more. The journaling process is just for you. You don’t have to share it or even reread it. Use the prompts that work for you and let the rest go.
Simple Journaling Prompts for Clutter
If it’s hard to let go, clutter keeps building up or you can’t stop shopping …
1. Ask yourself, why did I buy (insert name of thing here)? Journal about something you own that you never use. Describe what was happening in your life when you made the purchase and how you were feeling. See if you can identify if you purchased the item with expectations of how it would make you feel or make your life different.
2. Consider how you would live in your space if there was less clutter. Write about what would change, how you would feel, if you would miss any of it and why living with less might be better than living with more.
3. Take an indoor field trip. Walk around your home and notice your stuff. Look at the stuff on the counters and in the drawers. Look under the sink, in your cabinets and closets. Don’t forget all of the stuff that is hiding in the garage, attic or basement. Once you’ve seen it all, write about how owning all of that stuff serves you. Then write about how it holds you back. Journal on how it makes you feel too. Comforted? Overwhelmed? Secure? Confused?
Simple Journaling Prompts for Busyness
If you wonder where the days go, or find yourself doing more things out of obligation and expectation vs. genuine interest …
4. Consider the difference between spending your time intentionally and living the auto-pilot life. Write about how it feels when you are thoughtfully choosing how you spend your moments vs. the times in your day and life when you are simply doing the things you always do, or the things you are “supposed to do” or what you think you “should” do.
5. Write about how you would spend your time if there were no expectations (inner or outer) and money didn’t matter.
6. If you struggle to say no to protect your time and energy, write about why that is. Consider whether or not your propensity to please others is getting in the way of taking care of yourself and/or enjoying your own life.
7. Write about how you would spend your time if you only had a week left. Journal on who you would spend time with, what you wouldn’t spend time doing, and if there are any bucket list items you’d want to revisit. If you could let go of any big regrets or worries this week, what would they be? And don’t forget to write about joy. What would bring you the most joy? Then come back to today and journal on what needs to change in your life so you can bring some of those things you are saving for your last week into your right now.
Use these journaling prompts when you are thinking about simplifying your life, decluttering your stuff and trying to find more time to enjoy and engage in your life. When you have a better idea of what you really want and what’s important to you, it will be easier to let go of clutter and reclaim the time you have.
P.S. Summer School for Simplicity is opening for the last time at the end of June. Learn more here and sign up for the wait list.