Is your pen mightier than the sword?
Grab a pen and your favorite journal or notebook (or device) and your beverage of choice. Let’s sink into calm with a few writing prompts. Today, I’m focusing on list prompts that can be as simple or detailed as you want. Choose based on the time and energy you want to spend investing in your self right now. Don’t actually have time right now? Bookmark this page for later or email it to yourself using the Sharing buttons below the post.
Quick recap from yesterday’s post, “What Use Is Journaling?” – I find relief in getting the anxious words and wandering thoughts out of my mind and onto the page. Second, writing things down allows me to clarify what’s really important to me, and consider which ideas or interests I want to pursue. Journaling serves an important role (maybe even the most important) in my self care and wellness practices.
Here are your writing prompts, based on those found in 52 Lists for Calm: Journaling Inspiration for Soothing Anxiety and Creating a Peaceful Life. They’re separated into the categories Be Present, See Your Self, What’s Working and What Isn’t, and Release. Feel free to mix and match the prompts you need most today.
- Set a timer for 5 minutes (or even 10) and list everything stressing you out right now. When time’s up, close your journal and be done thinking about these things for now. If you miss the feeling of anxiousness, know you can always come back to the stressful items on this list. 😉
- List the songs that help you feel comfort, peace, and calmness. (Feels Like Home to Me – Dawson’s Creek version comes to mind.)
- BONUS: List the feisty, yelling, metal, punk rock-type songs (or any genre that expresses frustration in a way that resonates with you) that get the tension out so you can feel peace and calmness. For an upbeat one, I like Bowling for Soup’s 1985, while Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down (Swinging) from Fall Out Boy is a great stress reliever. I’d love to hear your picks in the comments below!
See Your Self
- List the things about yourself (habits, history, preferences, challenges) that you feel shy or worried about expressing.
- List the times you’ve benefited from slowing down, or saying no. (Ever gotten an angry response from someone you told “no” that immediately made you feel better about not agreeing to their request?!)
What’s Working and What Isn’t
- List your daily, weekly, or monthly routines that bring you ease or peace of mind. If you’re unsure, list any you’d be open to trying, like laying out your clothes or work for the next day, sitting down with your planner once a week to prioritize, or a monthly home/ space refresh (maybe cleaning out your wallet or planning a simple way to celebrate the next holiday).
- List the negative narratives you repeat to yourself in your mind. If you notice yourself slipping into one of these ruts, try changing your physical location and doing something different (ex. walking to another room and getting a glass of water).
- List the things you’re looking forward to repeating in your life.
- List the words you associate with calm.