Last Updated on December 1, 2023
We could all use a little more happiness! If you think you experience more negative emotions than positive ones, you’re probably looking for happiness anywhere you can. Luckily, these journal prompts for happiness are right here to help you soak up all the good that you do have.
Sometimes, it really can feel like nothing is going right in your life. Especially if you think you’re stuck in a series of bad events, it’s easy to get caught up in that and not be able to see the bigger picture. In times like these, it’s important to focus on what you can control.
Do what you can to at least make your mindset a happy place, even if things around you aren’t so happy.
Journaling is one of the best practices for improving your mindset and working through the tough emotions. If all else fails, these journal prompts for happiness have your back! Let’s check ‘em out.
What does it really mean to achieve happiness?
This is a question I actually can’t answer for you! Despite what you might have been led to believe, happiness is based on personal perception. In fact, psychologists suggest that a better name for “happiness” is “subjective well being.”
This “subjective well being” is your overall personal feelings about your present life. A better measure of your happiness would be to ask yourself: “am I experiencing more positive emotions, on average, than negative emotions?”
If you aren’t experiencing more positive emotions than negative, or you’re unsure, this may call for re-evaluating some things in your life. To start reflecting on how you can better-achieve happiness, these journal prompts for happiness are a great place to begin!
What do you write in a journal for happiness?
If your goal is to experience happiness more often, here are a few ideas for what to write in your journal!
- Follow these journal prompts for happiness
- Do a brain dump each time you had a good day (check out my ultimate brain dump trigger list here!)
- Record happy memories as they occur
- Reflect on all the positive parts of your life
- Write about the things you’re looking forward to in the next week, month, or year
Using your journal as a tool to vent about bad days also has its benefits that you shouldn’t miss out on. However, you should aim to balance the negative entries with positive entries when you can. Focusing your attention on the positive usually encourages more positivity!
Benefits of Journaling for Happiness
So, how will using these journal prompts for happiness help you? Here are some key benefits that really make my journaling practice so worth it!
- Repetition really can retrain your brain – Studies show that practicing positive affirmations regularly can retrain your brain to choose positive self-talk. The same can be applied to regularly journaling for happiness. The more you incorporate happy language into your inner-dialogue, the more happy you will think!
- Shifts in perspective – piggybacking off of the last point, choosing to seek out positivity can shift your perspective over time. If you were to dwell on the negative more often than the positive, your outlook would soon follow. This is why it’s important to reflect on positive things in your writing!
- Happiness will start to feel more “natural” – with enough practice, your brain won’t have to work so hard to shift into a positive mindset. Happy thoughts will become second nature!
- You’ll learn to see the positives in a negative situation – if it feels like one little thing ruins your whole day, you might need to work on this skill! The more you journal for happiness, the more you can practice seeing all sides to a situation. Maybe you didn’t get what you wanted, but an upside still presented itself. Letting the upside fuel you to keep going is a positive coping skill.
55 Journal Prompts for Happiness
- Name 3 things that make you feel grateful about today.
- What is the best thing that’s happened to you this year?
- Who is someone in your life that always cheers you up?
- Describe your happy place in detail.
- What is a little joy that you look forward to everyday?
- Has happiness been easier or harder to experience as you’ve gotten older?
- What makes you happy in your home environment?
- What makes you happy at work?
- Describe your favorite memory with a friend this year.
- What is your favorite season and what makes it so special?
- What is your favorite day of the week and why do you look forward to it?
- What makes you happy about how far you’ve come in your personal growth or mental health?
- What is your favorite trait about yourself?
- Which childhood memory makes you happy?
- What is something you’re looking forward to this week? This month? This year?
- Name a time where you were really proud of yourself. What was it for and how did you feel?
- What is a major life experience you’re most grateful for?
- What is something you can do today to make you feel happy?
- What is a self care activity you love to turn to when you feel down? (self care activities here!)
- Who is someone in your life that you love? What do you love about them?
- What is your comfort song or a song that boosts your mood?
- What TV show or movie always makes you laugh?
- Write down a positive affirmation you could use to keep you going this week. (positive affirmation ideas here!)
- If you had to picture your dream life, what would it look like?
- What is something you currently have in your life that would be part of your dream life?
Want to make gratitude journaling even better? Grab my gratitude journal!
My printable gratitude journal has everything you need to develop life-changing positive habits that make self love easier!
With morning, evening, weekly, and monthly gratitude exercises, you’ll stay accountable! Jam-packed with thought-provoking journal prompts and activities to keep you focused and on track.
More Prompts for Happiness Journaling
- What is a skill you’re proud to have?
- What is something you’re really good at?
- What food do you always look forward to eating?
- What is one positive habit you can add into your routine this month?
- What does “happiness” mean to you personally?
- What is a goal of yours that lights you up when you imagine achieving it?
- What is a really good thing that happened to you recently?
- What would the “perfect day” be for you?
- What is the best act of kindness you’ve given?
- What is the best act of kindness you’ve received?
- What positive things do you want to remember about this month or year?
- What made you laugh today?
- Name 5 things you have to smile about today.
- When you’re at your happiest, what are you doing?
- What is something in your life you have a deep appreciation for?
- What is a lesson you’re grateful for learning?
- What brings you comfort?
- What is something you might take for granted?
- What makes you happy about the city, state, or country you live in?
- Which holiday makes you the happiest?
- What is your favorite place to go in your town?
- What are some of your favorite hobbies? (hobby ideas here!)
- What’s the best book you’ve ever read and what did you like about it?
- What is your favorite time of day? What do you love to do during that time of day?
- How do you spend your weekends or free time in a way that makes you happy?
- What was a negative situation you encountered that turned out to be positive, or at least had a silver lining?
- Describe a time where you felt really comfortable and at ease.
- What are some freedoms you have that make you really happy to have?
- What can you do to add more happiness into your life?
- How can you make more time for the things you love?
How do you start a happy journal? Here’s 5 tips.
- Grab a journal! It can be as basic or as fancy as you like! Use a blank spare notebook, the notes app on your phone, or a super fancy-shmancy aesthetic journal.
- Choose an “easy” time of day. As in, a time of day you know you can consistently spare a few minutes of your time. This could be first thing in the morning as you sip your coffee, or 10 minutes before you turn the lights out for bed.
- Practice mindfulness as you write. Don’t worry about what you’re going to do after you put down your journal, what you’re going to make for dinner, or that email you didn’t respond to yet. Aim to fully immerse yourself in your journal and focus on how you feel in the present moment.
- Make it a habit. Don’t just pick your journal up once a month! Truly integrate it into your daily routine. If not everyday, then at least a few times a week. Journaling at the same time everyday will make it easier to “lock it in” to your routine.
- Explore the good side of a negative situation. You don’t need to fake happiness or positivity. However, seeing the “silver lining” in a bad situation, if there is one, can be a powerful coping tool to achieve acceptance about something.
How to use these journal prompts for happiness
Want to use these journal prompts for happiness to your advantage? Here’s some ideas on how to use ‘em!
- After a bad day – if you need a little pick-me-up after a challenging day, you can use these prompts to help you reflect on the positive memories or the “bigger picture” of overall positivity in your life
- First thing in the morning – have you ever opened up the wrong social media app or news article first thing in the morning? Did it make for a crummy start to your day? The things we consume first thing in the morning are impactful, so try starting your day with these journal prompts for happiness instead!
- Make it a Monday routine – starting off your week with happiness sets the tone for your entire week.
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