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Are you unsure of what to write in your journal to ease those feelings of anxiety?
If so, then you can use the following 29 journaling prompts for anxiety to free your mind from troubled thoughts.
Many people live in a perpetual state of anxiety.
One anxious thought often leads to another, and then another, until the person is surrounded by these thoughts. It becomes difficult to revert to a worry-free state of mind once these anxious thoughts take over.
In moments like this, journaling can help reduce anxiety. Studies have shown that writing about how a person feels has the potential to ease anxiety in people who have suffered from traumatic events (see information here).
Journaling prevents people from drowning in their own fearful thoughts. It also allows them to see their own strengths and discover nuances of their personalities.
Journaling also helps people find solutions to problems they have, as well as accept and learn to let go of things beyond their control.
Journaling Prompts for Anxiety (A Quick Infographic)
Looking for simple list of prompts you can use right away? If so, here a quick infographic that contains all the information we cover in this blog post. (That said, you might want to read below for a full explanation of each prompt.)
29 Journaling Prompts for Anxiety
Here are some writing prompts to help you on your journey.
1. What was the most difficult experience you had before, and how were you able to overcome it?
Recalling challenging times makes us see how far we’ve come, and might just inspire us to be grateful for all that has happened.
2. List three things that scare you the most, and the reasons why.
Facing the things that scare us lessens their power to make us anxious.
3. Recall three positive things that happened to you today and write them down. Be as detailed as possible.
Recalling positive things that happened in the day improves mood and motivation.
4. Reply to your inner critic’s opinions about your actions and decisions.
If it’s calling your attention to all the wrong things you’ve done, this is the time to focus on the right things you’ve accomplished, and to dismiss your inner critic’s poor opinion of you.
5. How are you feeling right now? Describe how you feel in writing.
Do you like how you’re feeling right now? If not, how would you like to feel? What can you do to change how you’re feeling?
6. List down all of the things that you’re worried about right now. Make the list as long as possible.
Putting all your worries out into the open prevents them from occupying too much space in your head.
7. Write a letter to three of your greatest supporters.
Think of the people who support you. Choose three of them. Then write a letter to each one detailing the ways they support you and telling them how much you appreciate them. You don’t have to mail the letters if you don’t want to.
8. What are the three things you’d love to be doing for the rest of your life?
Writing down the things you’d love to do even without receiving any compensation for them will help you reconnect with your passions.
9. Make a list of the compliments you’ve received from others.
Writing down the compliments you’ve gotten from others helps boost confidence and gives hope.
10. What are five moments in your life when you can say you were truly happy?
A study showed that people—especially teenagers—who recall happy memories are more resilient and less prone to depression.
11. Think back to a moment when you experienced failure. What lessons can you take from it?
Failure is necessary. It is considered the greatest teacher we’ll have in this life. Without it, we will be incapable of reaching for greater achievements.
12. Write a letter to yourself. Make it a love letter.
Discover how uniquely wonderful you are as you write about the admirable qualities you have.
Write a love letter for yourself.
13. If you’re prone to anxiety attacks, write down all the strategies you’ve used in the past that helped you cope with a flare up.
This list will help you realize that you’ve always managed to survive an attack, and will give you hope to overcome the condition.
14. Is your anxiety trying to tell you something? What is it?
Taking a closer look at your anxiety helps you discover the underlying reasons for your anxious thoughts, and hopefully motivates you to deal with them in a healthy way.
15. Describe the thing or situation that you look forward to every day.
Writing about things that give us joy anchors us and gives us strength to move forward.
16. List three of the greatest lessons you’ve been given by your anxiety.
Having anxiety changes our outlook about life. Writing about this can help you discover the new you that’s emerging.
17. List at least 10 activities you can do to take better care of yourself.
This is an action plan to help you remember that you (your health and well-being) are important.
18. What values are important to you?
Knowing which values you think are important helps you define your personal boundaries.
19. List down your anxiety triggers.
Knowing your triggers can help lessen the effect of symptoms during a flare up, or completely prevent them.
20. Think of someone who has caused you pain. Write him or her a letter of forgiveness.
Letting go of anger and resentment frees up our energy to be happier and more present in our own lives.
21. List down the questions that are constantly running through your head right now, and then try to answer each one.
The brain cannot engage in other thoughts while you’re trying to think of answers to questions you’ve posed for yourself. It’s a way to stop your tendency for rumination.
22. Write down your favorite inspiring quotes or song lyrics that motivate you.
Quotes are wonderful tools for taking you out of your head and spurring you into action.
23. List down the things that you are grateful for. Make the list as long as you can.
Practicing gratitude increases our happiness and makes us healthier, both in mind and body.
24. What is it that you need to let go of? Write your reasons for holding on to it.
Recognizing that we are hanging on to memories—especially painful ones—gives us the opportunity to finally let them go when we see how they are holding us back or causing our anxiety.
25. Write a letter to one or both of your parents. You don’t have to give the letter to them.
Writing to your parents can help clear up old issues or make you arrive at an understanding about the primary caregivers in your life.
26. Write two long-term goals. Brainstorm and write down your ideas for achieving them.
Goal-setting can help overcome some symptoms and aspects of anxiety. Write down your plan of action as clearly as possible.
27. Visualize that you are free from anxiety. Write down the details of this kind of life.
When you envision a life that’s different from what you have right now, your whole being works toward achieving it.
28. List 10 things that make you smile.
Recalling things that bring joy to us lifts our moods and changes our outlook.
29. List down three affirmations you can say to yourself today.
Positive affirmations can build our sense of self-worth and rewire our negative thinking, changing it to something positive.
Final Thoughts on Journaling Prompts for Anxiety
There you have it—29 journaling prompts for anxiety to help you achieve a sense of peace.
It is a challenge to live with any anxiety disorder. However, the outlook is not bleak. Anxiety can be overcome. The fact that you’re reading this article is proof that you’re taking control of your life.
One of the ways to overcome anxiety is to keep a journal. We hope that the writing prompts found in this post will be instrumental in your recovery.
Also, if your feelings of anxiety threaten to overwhelm you and affect your quality of life, it would be a good idea to seek professional help.
And if you want to see additional information on this topic, then check out our article on the 45 affirmations for anxiety.
Finally, if you want a simple way to reduce your stress and anxiety, then try writing these 35 mindfulness journaling prompts to live more in the present moment.